Standards Researcher and Technical Author

February 28, 2024

We are looking for a person with a background in qualitative research and technical authoring of standards to help develop the Standards that the IOP Alliance stewards.


We are looking for one or more individuals for the role of standards researcher and technical author to help our community write open standards for data, knowledge and know-how related to hardware and manufacturing.

We are interested in recruiting people to be part of our team, so we are less interested in companies (such as management consultancies or outsourcing firms). The contractual arrangement can be as staff or as consultants, including through their own consultancy companies.

The minimum contract duration is 2 months, and the current maximum is 18 months.

The time commitment is a minimum of 4 days per month (20% FTE) and the maximum is full- time.

This means that we may choose to appoint several people on shorter, part-time contracts to author different standards, or we may choose to appoint one person full-time on a longer-term contract to author all the standards. In short, we want to be flexible so that we don’t miss out on hiring great people for our different initiatives because of any contracting constraints.

In your application, please let us know which arrangement you would be interested in.

We are a small team working fully remotely across five countries supporting a global community.


The COVID pandemic has revealed how fragile and inefficient the global manufacturing paradigm and supply chain are in emergency situations. What if we could manufacture PPE, medical devices, or anything, locally anywhere? What if we reimagined manufacturing?

Given the current and emerging technology we have today, what would production look like if we reconfigured it from scratch? We believe the answer lies in sustainable, globally networked, local manufacturing. Join us and be part of the future of manufacturing!


Our mission

The Internet of Production Alliance (“IoP Alliance”) brings together people from around the world to build open infrastructures enabling anyone, everywhere to participate in production.

Our vision

We believe that the future of production lies in decentralized manufacturing based on shared knowledge, allowing us to deliver products faster, made from locally sourced materials and with less ecological impact.

Who we are

We are global Alliance of people and organizations building the knowledge and tools to enable this future. And we want you to join us.

Project description

Since its launch in 2018, the IOP Alliance has released 2 open data standards, part of a series of 5. Open Know-Where (“OKW”) and Open Know-How Design & Documentation (“OKH-D&D”) were created by the IOP Alliance working groups, constituted as a network of people and organisations working together voluntarily within a light coordination structure.

The next 2 years will see a great leap for the Alliance: the first dedicated team has been hired, a foundation is being registered, work on further standards has begun, and ambitious goals of growing the membership of the IOP Alliance and the adoption of OKH and OKW have been set.

In this context, we are hiring a person to the effort in documenting further standards. These include standards for: designs and documentation, portability, interactivity, electronic components, materials and components, skills, business models and contracts.


  1. Engage with expert level communities, including scoping and consultation activities on the development of the processes for scoping the standards
  2. Identification of potential stakeholders in relevant organization and sectors
  3. Interviewing relevant experts and conducting qualitative analysis of responses
  4. Ensuring coherence between the family of IOP Alliance standards
  5. Advising on the design of working groups to ensure the optimal make-up of expertise
  6. Write the specification(s) for the standards being developed, in line with the decisions made by the relevant working groups
  7. Establish and manage feedback channels within the working groups and with the wider community, ensuring changes to drafts are clearly and regularly communicated to encourage feedback
  8. Help document decisions taken by the working groups to ensure there is a trail showing how the standard was created, making it easier to evolve and improve

Person Specification

We are committed to building a diverse team and strongly encourage application from all backgrounds, genders and all regions of the world.

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent working experience in Information Management Systems, Information Science, Librarianship, Computer Science or other relevant disciplines
  • At least 3 years’ experience working in standards development and / or adoption
  • Extensive experience in documentation and facilitating community decision making
  • Extensive experience in qualitative research

Skills and Experience

The required skill levels in this role (awareness, working, practitioner, expert) are based on the Digital, Data and Technology Profession Capability Framework (

  • Stakeholder relationship management. You know how to direct the strategic approach for stakeholder relationships, establishing and promoting the meeting of stakeholder goals. You can influence key senior stakeholders and provide an arbitration function. (Relevant skill level: expert)
  • Inclusive research. You can understand the diversity of users of the relevant standards. You know how to include all kinds of stakeholders in appropriate research activities. You can advocate for inclusive practices and help design and deliver standards that work for all users. (Relevant skill level: expert)
  • Research skills. You have experience of, and can help us adopt, a wide range of research methods. You can plan research and advise colleagues on the choice and application of research methods to assure best practice. (Relevant skill level: practitioner)
  • Society and technology. You understand the social and technological context for the IOP Standards and can align research and documentation activities accordingly. (Relevant skill level: practitioner)
  • Communication skills. You can mediate between people and mend relationships, communicating with stakeholders at all levels. You know how to manage stakeholder expectations and facilitate discussions across high risk and complexity or under constrained timescales. You can speak on behalf of or represent the community to large audiences inside and outside of the Alliance. (Relevant skill level: expert)

Other skills

  • You are a problem solver you enjoy working with people from all over the world
  • You are diligent with strong attention to detail
  • Highly collaborative with experience in promoting consensus
  • You have a positive attitude with the ability to encourage others
  • You are a motivated self-starter, with experience working with remote teams
  • You have a passion for innovation, good documentation and quality
  • Languages: Excellent written and spoken English (other languages highly desirable)

Experience with any of the following would be highly desirable:

  • The maker movement and Open Hardware
  • Manufacturing processes

Application Process

  • We are reviewing applications on a rolling basis. Should you be interested in this position, we recommend that you send your application without delay.
  • Applications should include:
  • A cover letter discussing how you fulfil the profile criteria and your relevant
  • A CV/resume including 2 references
  • Please send your application to:


Commitment: Full-time or part-time depending on profile and interest

Duration: We are open to considering a timeframe based on your expertise and availability. It could be a 2-month contract to develop one of the standards, up to a maximum of 18 months to develop several standards.

Management: the role reports to and is managed by the Alliance Technical Coordinator.

Compensation: 20-100% FTE at 200-350 USD per day depending on experience and duration

Members of the Internet of Production Alliance act as fiscal sponsors for the Internet of Production Alliance projects and staff. The contract may be transferred once an Internet of Production Foundation is established.


Further information in the links below.

IoP Alliance website:
Field Ready’s blog post on OKW:

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