25 August 2023 3575 reads

Call for Nominations for the RDA Technical Advisory Board (TAB) 2023

The RDA is seeking candidates for the annual TAB election, to be held in November 2023.  TAB Terms are for three (3) years. We encourage participation from RDA members at all stages of their careers.

The Technical Advisory Board (TAB) is an essential and crucial governance board within the Research Data Alliance (RDA), providing the organization with invaluable technical oversight, vision, guidance, and advice. A volunteer position, TAB membership is a rewarding experience, offering an opportunity to engage with colleagues worldwide and understand the activities and visions in the field of FAIR data, open research and open science.

The RDA is calling the community to action to ensure that TAB has the diversity and balance necessary to execute its tasks, specifically in the areas of geography and expertise. 

Nominations will be accepted until 23:59 UTC 13 November 2023. Please see below for more details. For additional questions related to TAB, please contact enquiries@rd-alliance.org

What does TAB do?

TAB is responsible for the technical direction of the RDA and provides technical expertise and advice to the Council, as well as helping to develop and review RDA Working and Interest Groups and Communities of Practice to promote their impact and effectiveness.  Among other tasks, TAB Members:

  • engage with the RDA membership and feed their ideas and TAB perspectives into RDA processes and strategies;
  • evaluate proposed Communities of Practice (CoP), Working Groups and Interest Groups;
  • act as liaisons to endorsed Communities of Practice (CoP), Working and Interest Groups;
  • facilitate relevant communication and coordination across the various CoPs, WGs and IGs; 
  • work with RDA Working Groups to promote adoption and effectiveness of their Outputs; and
  • provide strategic insight into the current and future direction of the RDA, and each member’s own strengths are drawn upon regularly.

Much more information is available in the document TAB: What we do and how we do it on the RDA Website.

Why are we looking for new TAB Members?

The RDA conducts TAB elections on a yearly basis, coinciding with the year's even-numbered Plenary. At these times, a set of TAB members rotates off after their 3-year-terms come to an end.

Four of the RDA TAB members’ terms are ending in 2023. Three other seats are currently unfilled.  Please note that current members of RDA's Council, Secretariat, Regional Advisory Board and Organisational Advisory Board are not eligible for TAB membership.  

Who does TAB need?

The 2023 election to TAB will elect 7 members including 1 new seat to increase the number of TAB members (for a 3-year term) and 2 seats for 1 year (until end 2024) to fill vacancies. Some TAB members ending their term in 2023 are eligible for re-election.

There are balance criteria to ensure that disciplines and regions are adequately represented. 

The Regional criterion is no more than 6 but no fewer than 3 TAB members from each of:

  • The Americas
  • Europe and Africa
  • Asia and Oceania

The additional criterion of Discipline is applied to achieve a sufficient breadth of expertise. The Discipline criterion is based on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) classification (see https://www.oecd.org/science/inno/38235147.pdf for the sub-classifications under each category).

The major categories are:

  • Natural sciences
  • Engineering and technology
  • Medical and health sciences
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Social sciences
  • Humanities

No more than 5 TAB members can be from any of the listed disciplines. There is no minimum number of TAB members required per discipline.

In summary the table below outlines the compostion of TAB at the time of the elections.

A more complete description of the entire TAB Election Process and application of the balancing criteria is available via the TAB RDA page, https://rd-alliance.org/about-rda/our-leadership/rda-technical-advisory-board.html

What experience is needed?

The RDA welcomes a diverse TAB membership. You might have some years of strategic leadership and experience behind you which is part of the role, however equally important is a solid knowledge of the research data landscape, emerging global challenges and themes. We encourage nominations from professionals at all stages of their career. Read more about what the Roles and Responsibilities are for TAB here.


  • Any current RDA member may self-nominate or be nominated by others. 
  • Not sure if you are an RDA member?  Do you have an account on our website (rd-alliance.org)?  Yes? Then you’re a member!  If not, sign up now!
  • Know someone who would be perfect for the role?  Encourage them to apply!

Here’s how to apply

  • To apply, please fill in the candidacy form.
  • Each candidate must have a minimum of three (3) RDA members willing to second their nomination. Seconders must send a simple one-sentence statement to the RDA Secretariat (enquiries@rd-alliance.org) stating that they support the nomination of the candidate.
  • Applications and seconds are due by 23:59 UTC on 13 November 2023.
  • For each candidate with a complete nomination package, i.e., completed candidacy form and supporting statements from 3 seconders, their statement and photo will be posted on the RDA website.  Note that the seconders will not be posted.
  • Elections will open on 21 November 2023 and close on 7 December 2023.  All RDA members are strongly encouraged to vote.

Still have unanswered questions?

Current TAB members will be happy to discuss the time commitments, working procedures, and other elements of TAB membership. Find a list of current and past TAB members here: https://rd-alliance.org/about-rda/our-leadership/rda-technical-advisory-board.html

Additional information is available from the RDA Secretariat at enquiries@rd-alliance.org.