Smart Grid Interoperability Panel charts future – same role, new structure


John D. McDonald,
Chair, SGIP
Governing Board
Gaithersburg, MD, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — July 12, 2012 – The Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) has mapped out its future path with the decision by the governing board to transition from a federally funded public-private partnership to a self-financed legal entity that retains a working partnership with government.

This transition, which has been envisioned since the creation of the SGIP in 2009, will gain momentum over the next six months. Official launch of the new organization is planned in January 2013.

The SGIP was established by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to support the development of smart grid standards in the U.S.

The new organization, which informally is called “SGIP 2.0,” will provide the structure and continuity needed to maintain the mission, i.e. “to provide a strong framework for coordination of all stakeholders of the smart grid to accelerate standards harmonization and development.”

Likewise the basic principles – openness, balance, consensus, harmonization – and responsibilities will be maintained, and will continue to be carried out in the working groups that have proved to be effective to date – the PAPs (Priority Action Plans), standing committees, DEWGS (Domain Expert Working Groups), and working groups.

Under the business plan that has been approved, SGIP 2.0 will be a tax-exempt, not-for-profit membership organization. Funding will come multiple and diverse sources, including membership dues, sponsorships, and grants from government, endowments, and foundations. The two categories of membership are participating members and observing members, with two levels of privileges.

The day-to-day leadership and management of SGIP 2.0 will be provided by a full-time dedicated executive director under the supervision and guidance of the Board of Directors. Additional resources will include a small full-time staff and a larger set of outsourced resources.

“While important as a milestone, this is only the beginning of the next stage of the transition and implementation process,” said John D. McDonald, chair of the SGIP Governing Board in a written message. “We have the opportunity – and the obligation – to work together to shape the standards that will ensure interoperability in the smart grid.”