Responsible for complete artifact transparency?

Last post 07:44 pm August 17, 2021
by Sascha Cenani
5 replies
01:48 pm August 17, 2021


i stumbled upon a question (see topic) which i was ill equipped to answer.

As the Scrum Guide 2020 describes transparency is vital and due to the fact that our scrum artifacts have specific "owners", my take on this would have been, that the whole scrum team is responsible for making the information in these artifacts as transparent as possible.

According to the creator of this question, the answer "should" be: The Scrum Master.


What would your interpretation suggest?

It is hard for me to interpret such a responsibility from the description in the Scrum Guide 2020.

Maybe this answer is derived from an earlier version of the Scrum Guide?


02:18 pm August 17, 2021

What is the source of this question and the associated answer?

I don't believe that there is a single person responsible for the transparency associated with all of the Scrum artifacts. There are three artifacts in Scrum - the Product Backlog, the Sprint Backlog, and the Increment. I would say that the Product Owner is accountable for the transparency of the Product Backlog, the Developers are accountable for the transparency of the Sprint Backlog, and the whole Scrum Team is accountable for the transparency of the current status of the Increment. However, in all cases, everyone has a role to play, including the Scrum Master.

Specifically, about the role of the Scrum Master in transparency, the Scrum Master should be able to coach the Product Owner and Developers in ways to make the artifacts transparent to the stakeholders and also work with the stakeholders to understand the purpose, intent, and contents of the artifacts. However, the Scrum Master is not directly responsible or accountable for the transparency of the artifacts.

02:52 pm August 17, 2021

What would your interpretation suggest?

I'd suggest that the person responsible for complete artifact transparency is the one who first sees that it is insufficiently complete.

04:27 pm August 17, 2021

Thank you both for your insights.


@Thomas: The question came from the Mikhail Lapshin PSM-quiz.

I imagine such a question will not be part of the real exam ;)

05:39 pm August 17, 2021

If this was from a previous Scrum Guide revision, it would have to be an extremely old version.  I have not seen anything like this in any of the versions I have used.  

The entire Scrum Team is responsible for transparency.  As @Thomas Owens suggests, the level on responsibility is varied depending on the information.  @Ian Mitchell calls out an underlying premise behind recognizing and maintaining the transparency.  

If you do a search in the current revision of the Scrum Guide for the word transparency, you will notice that all references are centered on Scrum artifacts and events ability to achieve transparency.  Since none of the Scrum events or artifacts are a single person's responsibility, it implies that transparency falls on all Scrum Team members.

07:44 pm August 17, 2021

Hi all,

ok so my take "Scrum team" was correct.

Thank you all for your insights :)