PyTorch Governance

Governance Philosophy and Guiding Tenets

PyTorch adopts a governance structure with a small set of maintainers driving the overall project direction with a strong bias towards PyTorch’s design philosophy where design and code contributions are valued. Beyond the core maintainers, there is also a slightly broader set of core developers that have the ability to directly merge pull requests and own various parts of the core code base.

Beyond the maintainers and core devs, the community is encouraged to contribute, file issues, make proposals, review pull requests and be present in the community. Given contributions and willingness to invest, anyone can be provided write access or ownership of parts of the codebase.

Based on this governance structure, the project has the following core operating tenets by which decisions are made and overall culture is derived:

  1. Code contributions matter much more than corporate sponsorship and independent developers are highly valued.

  2. Project influence is gained through contributions (whether PRs, forum answers, code reviews or otherwise)

Key people and their functions

Project Maintainers

Project maintainers provide leadership and direction for the PyTorch project. Specifics include:

  • Articulate a cohesive long-term vision for the project

  • Possess a deep understanding of the PyTorch code base

  • Negotiate and resolve contentious issues in ways acceptable to all parties involved

PyTorch Maintainers:

Core Developers

The PyTorch project is developed by a team of core developers. You can find the list of core developers at PyTorch Governance | Persons of Interest.

While membership is determined by presence in the “PyTorch core” team in the “PyTorch” organization on GitHub, contribution takes many forms:

  • committing changes to the repository;

  • reviewing pull requests by others;

  • triaging bug reports on the issue tracker;

  • discussing topics on official PyTorch communication channels.


There is a group of people, some of which are not core developers, responsible for ensuring that discussions on official communication channels adhere to the Code of Conduct. They take action in view of violations and help to support a healthy community. You can find the list of moderators here.

Decision Making

Uncontroversial Changes

Primary work happens through bug tracker issues and pull requests on GitHub. Core developers should avoid pushing their changes directly to the PyTorch repository, instead relying on pull requests. Approving a pull request by a core developer allows it to be merged without further process. Core Developers and Project Maintainers ultimately approve these changes.

Notifying relevant experts about a bug tracker issue or a pull request is important. Reviews from experts in the given interest area are strongly preferred, especially on pull request approvals. Failure to do so might end up with the change being reverted by the relevant expert.

Controversial decision process

Substantial changes in a given interest area require a GitHub issue to be opened for discussion. This includes:

  • Any semantic or syntactic change to the framework.

  • Backwards-incompatible changes to the Python or Cpp API.

  • Additions to the core framework, including substantial new functionality within an existing library.

  • Removing core features

Project Maintainers ultimately approve these changes.


Q: What if I would like to own (or partly own) a part of the project such as a domain api (i.e. Torch Vision)? This is absolutely possible. The first step is to start contributing to the existing project area and contributing to its health and success. In addition to this, you can make a proposal through a GitHub issue for new functionality or changes to improve the project area.

Q: What if I am a company looking to use PyTorch internally for development, can I be granted or purchase a board seat to drive the project direction? No, the PyTorch project is strictly driven by the maintainer-driven project philosophy and does not have a board or vehicle to take financial contributions relating to gaining influence over technical direction.

Q: Does the PyTorch project support grants or ways to support independent developers using or contributing to the project? No, not at this point. We are however looking at ways to better support the community of independent developers around PyTorch. If you have suggestions or inputs, please reach out on the PyTorch forums to discuss.

Q: How do I contribute code to the project? If the change is relatively minor, a pull request on GitHub can be opened up immediately for review and merge by the project committers. For larger changes, please open an issue to make a proposal to discuss prior. Please also see the PyTorch Contributor Guide for contribution guidelines.

Q: Can I become a committer on the project? Unfortunately, the current commit process to PyTorch involves an interaction with Facebook infrastructure that can only be triggered by Facebook employees. We are however looking at ways to expand the committer base to individuals outside of Facebook and will provide an update when the tooling exists to allow this.

Q: What if i would like to deliver a PyTorch tutorial at a conference or otherwise? Do I need to be ‘officially’ a committer to do this? No, we encourage community members to showcase their work wherever and whenever they can. Please reach out to for marketing support.


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