Field Guide

Bring Your Own Identity

A special case of the three party model where the service provider specifies the technical methods that it will accept, but allows the requester to choose any identity service they like.  The service provider does not set details for identity verification or authentication and simply assumes that the requester has chosen one that’s good enough […]

Winner Take All

“Winner Take All” Three Party Model A special case of the three party model where the service provider wants to allow the requester to use an existing identity, but only accepts authentication from a defined set of providers. Participants sign an agreement with the identity provider, which also allows them to talk to one another. […]


Federations A Federation provides a standard, pre-negotiated set of contracts that allow organizations to recognize identities issued by one another.  A federation agreement might specify user roles, governance, security and verification policies, or specific technical methods. The federation is organized around a Contract Hub, which is responsible for the agreements. Organizations with similar goals or […]

Mesh Federation

Mesh Federation A Mesh Federation provides a legal and policy umbrella so that institutions can interact with one another but does not specify technical methods. Each member organization issues digital identities for its people and the federation agreement provides the legal framework for them to use one another’s resources.  The federation agreement might specify governance, […]