This policy formalizes criteria and a community-driven, transparent process by which open-source software projects can gain, lose, and maintain certain types of affiliation with the OBF.
Establishing an affiliation between an open source software project and the OBF is intended to have value for both the project and the OBF. It stands to promote a project's overall health and long-term sustainability, which is among the OBF's primary objectives. The user and developer communities of affiliated projects constitute the primary pool of volunteers for OBF as an umbrella organization.
That notwithstanding, it is not the OBF's mission to serve primarily as a project hosting or resource provider for bioinformatics open-source projects. Instead, as an umbrella organization the OBF's focus is on projects that serve, or have the potential to serve, a large variety of bioinformatics research applications and users. Therefore, the group of projects with some status of affiliation with the OBF is expected to always be limited in number. In keeping with the potential benefits of affiliation for a project, the criteria formalized here aim to maintain OBF's focus and mission.
Projects differ in terms of their activity, community, audience, and wider impact on bioinformatics. Also, over time, projects change, become more active, or less relevant and even dormant. This policy aims to provide mechanisms through which projects' affiliations can reflect such dynamics.