A structural element that allows a context of activity to interact with another context of activity.
The interface specifies how processes in one activity context are translated into processes in another activity context. It allows interoperability between different contexts of activity or organizations, projects, ventures. See also networks of networks.
The legal structure of an organization is an interface, allowing it to interact with other organizations in its ecosystem, including the government or governmental institutions, as well as the market (firms).
The interface is part of the organizational structure. It must be considered at the same time with other structural elements such as culture and ethos, methodologies, and infrastructure, because all these elements are interrelated and form a holistic system. In other words, it cannot be considered in abstraction of these other structural elements.
Example of Sensorica
Sensorica is an OVN, represented legally in Canada as a non-registered association. See Code civile section V, 2267. As such, it is impossible for sensoricans to sign a contract with an institution, government, private firm or other. Another problem is that in an association legal liability rests with the members of the association, i.e. the affiliates of the network. To interact with the institutional world Sensorica has created legal interfaces such as the Custodian and the Exchange firm.
In short, the Custodian is a non profit organization that acts as a trust for all the assets shared by network affiliates, including physical spaces, equipment and tools, consumables, and even digital assets such as web domains, online services of all sorts, including contend and repositories of content, including financial services (fiat and crypto accounts / wallets). Any liability associated with the use of these assets is absorbed by the Custodian. Thus, if someone gets hurt in a shared space (the Sensorica lab) the Custodian takes on the blame and uses its insurance to repair the damage. The Custodian is also used to acquire grants and distribute them to network affiliates to conduct their activities. When the network interfaces with the market, by offering a service or a product, the Exchange firm, which is a limited liability corporation absorbs the liability associated with the commercial activity. The Exchange firm and the Custodian can also sign contracts with institutions, public or private.