The purpose of the IETF

This is based on an IESG retreat held just before the London IETF, August 2001, with some connection to other sources.

Main point

The purpose of the IETF is to create high quality, relevant standards for the Internet

The common purpose that brings the IETF together is that "The Internet must work".
We have a shared vision of a common, ubiquitous, open networking infrastructure that can be used for a multitude of purposes, bringing the benefits of communication to bear on a variety of tasks.
A large part of making the Internet work is the job of others, and NOT IETF business - because others do it better.
This includes:

However, we seem to have a common view that no other body is doing a better job of creating standards for the "core of the Internet".
We have a number of limitations in the standards area too: But - there is an area "in the middle" that is not covered adequately by any other standards organization, and for which we believe that the IETF has unique expertise that it can bring to bear on the problem.
The borders of this area are intentionally fuzzy - if something turns out to be a real problem that needs an Internet-based solution, we want to be able to bring our expertise to bear on it - IF that is of benefit to the Internet.

This "warm and fuzzy" does not translate real easily into measurable work items. But we can try.

Metrics for IETF success

In any situation where you need to know whether you are doing good or doing bad, you have to measure. And what you measure will have a direct influence on what you optimize for. Therefore, the metrics to measure the IETF matter.

Metrics for IESG success

At the "high order bit", the IESG succeeds if the IETF succeeds. We must then look at what the IESG can do to contribute to the IETF metrics, and see if there are metrics that we can use to see if the IESG is succeeding. Examples: A problem in the first 2 bullets is that we have a quality control problem - if the WG proposals or the WG consensus documents are not high quality, speed will drop like a stone - and SHOULD. We need metrics to capture this, somehow.