2021 Annual Eclipse Foundation Community Report
Welcome to the tenth annual Eclipse Foundation Community Report. Comments and feedback on the style and content would be appreciated at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Except where otherwise noted this report covers the period April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Executive Director’s Summary: A Transformative Year
- Who We Are
- 2021 Strategy
- Key Board Decisions
Executive Director’s Summary:
A Transformative Year
Welcome to the 2021 Eclipse Foundation Community Report!
I’ve had the pleasure of serving the Eclipse community as Executive Director since its inception in 2004. Over that time, the changes to the open source community at large, the Eclipse community in particular, and the Foundation itself have been extraordinary. I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to see the growth and evolution of the Eclipse community over my 17 years with the Eclipse Foundation.
2020-21 has been a transformative year in almost every aspect.
Certainly, the global pandemic has had a dramatic impact on the Foundation as well as all of our 300+ member organizations and our thousands of committers and contributors. First and foremost, I extend my best wishes to all, and hope that all in our community, and their families, have been, and continue to be safe. Also, the pandemic has brought to a very quick halt the opportunity for us to meet one another at various conferences, meetings, and events. After this long hiatus from travel, I look forward to seeing our community members again in the not-too-distant future.
Important Project Milestones Achieved
I am proud of the major accomplishments achieved by our community over the 2020-21 period. Many of our most visible projects have seen important milestones. Notably, the Simultaneous Release of the Eclipse IDE and packages continues to evolve; since switching to a cadence of quarterly releases in 2018, 12 quarterly releases of the Simultaneous Release have been completed on schedule, and with enhanced features benefitting the IDE’s millions of users. Jakarta EE 9 was released in December 2020, representing a significant milestone for the enterprise Java ecosystem. Eclipse SUMO has emerged as the most active Eclipse Foundation open source project. There were also major releases in our IoT and edge communities, our cloud tools community, and many other technical areas.
In total, 515 project releases were completed over the past 12 months. As of March 2021, the Foundation has stewardship of over 260 million lines of code in the Eclipse repositories. The Eclipse Foundation codebase is conservatively valued at over $13 billion using the industry standard COCOMO model.
We have also seen the Eclipse Foundation Specification Process (EFSP) being used more widely. In addition to Jakarta EE, it is now adopted by the MicroProfile, Sparkplug, and AsciiDoc specification projects. Further validation of the EFSP came from the migration of OSGi specifications from being overseen by the OSGi Alliance to now being housed at Eclipse Foundation and using the EFSP.
Working Groups Continue to Thrive
Working groups continue to play a growing role in how members engage at the Eclipse Foundation. In total, we have 17 working groups as of March 31, 2021. As a proof point of the importance of these working groups in bringing members together to work collaboratively in support of Eclipse Foundation projects, more than 140 Member organizations now participate in one or more working groups. These working groups are enabling new initiatives to flourish.
To call out just two new working groups formed in early 2021, the Adoptium Working Group has been formed as the successor to AdoptOpenJDK, and will play a valuable role in the Java ecosystem going forward. The Eclipse IDE Working Group has been formed to augment the incredible work done by our Committers on the Eclipse IDE and the Simultaneous Release, and to ensure the long-term vibrancy of the IDE.
New Initiatives at the Foundation
Lastly with respect to our technical initiatives, many of the activities emanating from Eclipse Foundation projects and working groups are leading to significant, innovative services being hosted at the Foundation as their vendor neutral home. For example, the OpenVSX Registry is hosted by the Eclipse Cloud Development Tools Working Group, and provides a marketplace for VS Code extensions that is operated in a vendor neutral, transparent manner. The Jakarta EE Compatible Products site provides a comprehensive landing area for industry and is seeing widespread use. As open source continues to grow in significance in the marketplace, the opportunity for the Foundation to provide innovative services through our working groups will continue to increase in value.
Eclipse Foundation as a European-based Association
For the Foundation and our members, a big part of our year has been in redomiciling the Foundation as a European-based, international nonprofit association incorporated in Belgium. This shift reflects and capitalizes on our unique position as the preeminent European-based open source community with global reach. This pivot of our corporate structure has been a major lift in terms of both effort and positive impact — and one that we see as being beneficial to all our projects and members over the coming years.
In particular, I want to call out the members of the Eclipse Foundation Board for the many dedicated hours they put into this initiative, as well as the organizations who led this initiative, be it with financial, legal, or community outreach support. This redomiciling has been a unique project, one of which I’m proud and from which I have certainly enjoyed the learning journey. More details about the redomiciling are available here.
In conjunction with redomiciling, the Board and Membership at Large approved updates to the Eclipse Bylaws in the fall of 2020. These changes better align the Foundation with European-based not-for-profit practices, as well as streamline our membership structure. Of note, we now have four classes of membership (vs. the six we had previously), where the predominance of our corporate members are now in the Contributing Member class. What has been retained is the commitment to all Committers being welcome and encouraged to be Members of the Foundation. This direct, active involvement of our Committers in our governance is fairly unique to Eclipse Foundation, and better ensures that matters that are important to committers remain front and center in governance decisions. The Board further approved updates to other policies, notably the Eclipse Foundation Intellectual Property and Antitrust policies. All our governance documents are available on our governance page.
A New Approach to This Report
We have decided to condense the format of this year’s Annual Community Report. In year’s past, this report served as an encyclopedic update on all things happening at the Eclipse Foundation. While a valuable reference document, it seemed like the wrong forum to try and capture such depth in detail and likely not as valuable to most readers. This year, we are using this publication as a means to provide our community members with a more succinct and (hopefully!) useful summary that you can, in turn, use to communicate to your stakeholders about what’s happened at the Foundation. Of course, you can continue to rely on our many other marketing and communications channels to understand what lies ahead.
Who We Are
The Eclipse Foundation’s mission is summarized as follows:
The Eclipse Foundation’s purpose is to advance our open source software projects and to cultivate their communities and business ecosystems.
The dedication to this purpose makes the Eclipse community a unique open source community. We believe the Foundation’s ongoing success comes from this unique combination of a consistent interest in building open source code and community, and a sustained commitment to creating a commercially successful ecosystem around that code to the benefit of our community.
Our vision for the Eclipse community is:
To be the leading community for individuals and organizations to collaborate on commercially friendly open source.
As established by the Board of Directors, the strategic goals of the Eclipse Foundation for 2021 represent a continued drive towards meeting our vision for the Eclipse community.
Communicate the Eclipse Foundation’s differentiated value
The Foundation continues to flourish, and to occupy a unique
position in the open source world. The Eclipse IDE and the
Simultaneous Release continue to be a flagship set of projects, and
the technologies delivered by those projects continue to be used by
literally millions of developers worldwide. Indeed, new innovations
are continuously added by our developer community, and many of our
members recently came together to form the Eclipse IDE Working Group
in support of the IDE.
While the Eclipse IDE is well known globally, the Eclipse community is much larger, broader, and richer than the IDE. We are stewards of approximately 400 open source projects, and the significance of many of these projects and their importance in the overall open source marketplace continues to grow. Today, the value proposition of bringing new projects to the Eclipse Foundation, and the ongoing evolution of those projects under the Foundation’s stewardship, is more compelling than ever. We continue to offer strong intellectual property management services for all projects. We also offer infrastructure to our projects that better ensure long-term viability and vendor-neutrality, both of which are of strategic importance to our members. We also provide a much richer set of services around marketing and communications, telling the stories of our projects and our members in a way that is of great value to both. Overall, the Foundation’s clear differentiator is its focus on commercial-friendly open source, and the fact that our antitrust, IP policies, and governance structure all drive benefit to our projects, members, and community.
- Establish the Eclipse Foundation as the preeminent European OSS organization. The redomiciling of the Eclipse Foundation as a European-based, international not-for-profit association has immediately positioned the organization as the largest European-based open source foundation when measured by projects, members, or committers. Now that the governance transition is complete, we are actively working as part of many major European open source initiatives that will have global reach in terms of their impact. We have been pleased to see the positive engagement thus far by so many of our Members, including both European-based Members and others from around the globe.
- Promote working groups as an effective model for open governance, collaboration, marketing, and industry adoption. The Eclipse Foundation’s Working Group model, based on the Eclipse Foundation Working Group Process, has evolved into an effective, lightweight governance structure that enables member organizations to come together to drive shared interests in Eclipse projects and promotion of Eclipse technologies and open specifications. A primary focus of the Foundation staff continues to be on enabling both new and existing members to effectively engage and collaborate using this lightweight governance structure to carry out meaningful activities that drive adoption of our projects, promote participation in those projects, and generally drive the business value related to those open source projects.
- Attract and foster new projects, specifications, and working groups focused on emerging technologies. As open source continues to become ever more strategic to our member organizations, the Eclipse Foundation continues to cultivate and onboard strategic and emerging industrial and commercial technologies. Building on our open specifications process, we continue to put a significant emphasis on attracting new open specification initiatives, and now have five working groups engaged in publishing open specifications under the Eclipse Foundation Specification Process.
- Cultivate the growth of our existing projects, communities, working groups, and ecosystems. Continuing the overall growth and vibrancy of the Eclipse community is a constant focus and a key differentiator for the Foundation in the marketplace. The growth of the community comes from broader adoption of the technologies and enabling new ways for individuals and organizations to participate. The Foundation now conducts or facilitates dozens of virtual community events of all sizes. This model has allowed for each individual Eclipse project community, be it large or small, localized or regionally diverse, to extend its reach. We have also introduced a variety of marketing and communications channels, each of which is aimed at enabling more people to learn about Eclipse technologies, to more effectively adopt those technologies, and to participate in the community. Our working groups in support of cloud native Java, IoT, edge computing, automotive, etc. further advance this cultivation of growth.
- Continuously increase value for all its membership classes. As part of the Foundation’s constant drive to enhance member value, we recently introduced new initiatives to focus more on the economic benefit of participation. We are launching a new program to highlight the benefits of participation to entrepreneurs and the entrepreneurial-based initiatives of our Members, providing insight and guidance on leveraging the Foundation’s unique characteristics that benefit these initiatives. We have also started hosting our own GitLab service. Based in Europe, this service provides valuable choices for hosting projects and tooling that are appealing to many Members, notably to our Committers, who form a critical class of membership at the Foundation that is quite unique and uniquely beneficial to our ecosystem. And we are launching other initiatives to better enable all of our own members to highlight, via their own channels, the overall benefit of participation in the Eclipse Foundation to their stakeholders.
- Increase and diversify our membership, contributors, and revenue sources. Aligned with the six strategic goals listed above is an explicit goal to increase and diversify our revenue sources, as well as to continually diversify our membership. In 2020-2021, led by participation in Jakarta EE, we have seen an increase in the number of Asia-based organizations that have become members, as well as an increase in participation of Java User Groups. Both of these represent a broadening of Jakarta’s global community, and impact. Our overall revenue growth continues to be driven largely by the creation of, and participation in, working groups. We expect this trend to continue for the foreseeable future.
Key Board Decisions
Over the past year, the Board has made a number of strategic decisions designed to enable the Foundation to achieve its objectives and fulfill its mission.
- Approval of steps to support the Foundation’s international strategy. In March 2020, the Board took the strategic decision to redomicile the Foundation as a European organization. Throughout 2020/21, the Board executed on this strategy, culminating in the creation in November 2020 of Eclipse Foundation AISBL, an international not-for-profit association based in Brussels. The Board further approved the creation of Eclipse Foundation Canada as a means of streamlining the Foundation’s operations, recognizing that the majority of the Foundation’s staff are based in Canada. All of these changes were made without an impact to overall membership revenues, with a number of Members that were supportive of the move contributing additional funds to support the initiative, and further showing their support for the strategy. More information regarding the details of the Foundation’s international strategy can be found at https://www.eclipse.org/europe/.
- Adoption of new bylaws. In support of the redomiciling of the Foundation as a Belgian-based organization, the Board approved new bylaws and associated membership agreement. The bylaws have been modernized to meet the needs of the growing and evolving Eclipse community. The new bylaws have streamlined the classes of membership from six classes to four classes: Strategic, Contributing, Associate, and Committer.
- Approval to enable the Foundation to enter into an OpenJDK Community TCK License with Oracle. The Board approved the Foundation to enter into an agreement with Oracle that will enable the Eclipse Foundation to host and distribute Java SE compatible distributions of OpenJDK. This decision paved the way for the formation of the Adoptium Working Group in support of this initiative. By doing so, the Foundation continues to play an ever-important role in the open source Java community.
- Approval to enable the OSGi Alliance to contribute its OSGi Specifications to the Eclipse Foundation and for the Foundation to become the successor organization of OSGi Alliance. The Board granted approval to enable the OSGi Alliance to contribute its specifications under the Eclipse Foundation Specification Process, and for the Foundation to be named as the successor organization of OSGi Alliance. This action benefits our Members who support the OSGi specifications, and ensures the long-term viability of those specifications.
- Updates to the Eclipse Code of Conduct. As part of its ongoing drive to continually foster an open and welcoming community, the Board updated the Eclipse Community Code of Conduct to better match the Foundation’s project and community structures.
- Restatement of Eclipse Foundation membership fees to be in Euros. In further support of the redomiciling as a European-based organization, the Foundation took the formal step in October, 2020 to have its fees be stated in Euros rather than U.S. dollars.
- Approval of OpenVSX Registry. The Board passed a number of resolutions that together have enabled the creation and operation of the OpenVSX Registry, including allowing the registry to distribute hosted content under a broad set of open source licenses.
The Eclipse Foundation’s fiscal year end is December 31. Our auditors are the firm Deloitte & Touche, LLP. Our operating headquarters is located in Ottawa, Canada, with the remainder of our team based in various European countries and the U.S. The Eclipse Foundation is now comprised of four organizations:
- Eclipse Foundation AISBL is an international not-for-profit association based in Brussels
- Eclipse.org Foundation, Inc. is incorporated in the State of Delaware, USA as a 501(c)6 not-for-profit
- Eclipse Foundation Canada is a Canadian nonprofit member-based organization incorporated under the laws of Canada
- Eclipse Foundation Europe GmbH is a wholly-owned Germany subsidiary.
The Board approved the 2020 audited financial statements of the Foundation at its April 21, 2021 Board meeting.
The Foundation continues to operate on a solid financial footing while continuing to grow. Despite the challenge created by the global COVID-19 pandemic, membership renewals remained strong, including the renewal of all Strategic Members. The Foundation also welcomed Daimler DSS as a Strategic Member, further demonstrating the importance of the Foundation to the automotive industry in general.
Working group revenue grew in 2020, notably with the introduction of the Eclipse Cloud Development Tools working group. Overall, the Foundation has grown to 17 working groups, with each generating revenues to meet the specific objectives of the working group, and overall strengthening the Foundation’s overall ability to drive member value through its initiatives.
Of note, the formation of the Adoptium Working Group and the Eclipse IDE Working Group in early 2021 both include long-term financial commitments from members to the working group model. Looking ahead to the full 2021 fiscal year, the Board approved a cash-neutral budget that called for an increase of revenues to $7.3M, forecasting a deficit of $0.3M. The forecast approved by the Board is considered conservative, based on the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the global pandemic and its impact on membership.
As a matter of governance, management provides quarterly updates to the Board’s finance committee. Further, all Members are kept up to date regarding the Foundation’s budget through quarterly reports given through its Member Newsletter publications.
Eclipse Foundation Income and Expenses, by Year
In USD millions
As of March 31, 2021, the Eclipse Foundation has 14 strategic members.
Of note, the Eclipse Foundation also counts over 1,694 committers. Committers are entitled to membership in the Foundation, and play a valuable role in Eclipse Foundation governance, including representation on the Eclipse Board and on many working group steering committees.
As of March 31, 2021, the Foundation counts 341 organizations as members. A total of 58 new companies joined as new members of the Foundation from April 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021.
As proof of the continued importance of Eclipse working groups to our membership, fully 93% of our Strategic Members participate in one or more working groups, as do approximately 70% of Contributing Members. Further, approximately 50% of new members that joined in 2020 did so as a direct result of their involvement in one or more Eclipse Foundation working groups. We believe this is proof that engagement in working groups continues to be a significant value proposition for participation in Eclipse Foundation membership.
The Foundation has continued its relationship with OpenHW Group, the Canadian-based open hardware nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering collaboration among global hardware and software designers in the development of open source cores, related IP, tools, and software. All OpenHW Group Platinum, Gold, and Silver members are also Contributing Members of the Eclipse Foundation, and as of March, 2021, this amounted to 49 Contributing Members.
A full list of our members can be seen on our Explore Our Members page.
New Members of the Eclipse Foundation
The new members that have joined the Eclipse Foundation between April 2020 and March 2021 include:
© 2021 Eclipse Foundation - 2021 Annual Community Report