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OSEPA Open Source Policy Statement

Summary of Project Achievements from 1.1.10 – 31.12.10

The 1st European Conference (http://conferencia.osepa.eu/en/), “Open Source Usage and Impact in Public Administrations: towards a more efficient Europe”, during 1-2.12.10 at Badajoz of Spain completed successfully. The conference explored the strategic and policy-making aspects of administrations’ transition to Free/Open Source Software (FOSS). It gathered high-profile experts, (one of the keynote speakers being K. Gerloff, president of the Free Software Foundation Europe), elected representatives and IT managers of public administrations, as well as delegates from competence centers and FOSS developers and communities. The conference resulted in the signing of the Manifesto for open source software and public administrations by participating politicians. The Manifesto is presenting the main advantages of FOSS for Public Administrations and establishes a commitment by the signatories to promote awareness-raising campaigns for open source software usage by public administrations.

A noteworthy alliance has been also established between the OSEPA project and the Open Source Observatory and Repository for European public administrations (OSOR) (www.osor.eu). Through this collaboration, OSEPA aspires to disseminate the project results to wider audiences Europe-wide and to explore opportunities for running events and activities together with relevant FOSS-centered stakeholders. The OSEPA consortium had also the opportunity to distinguish between the developed and less-developed on FOSS policies countries by monitoring and gathering the relevant data. This gave the consortium a clear vision of the areas that needs to put more effort in order to influence FOSS policy reform.

The two interregional workshops (in Malmo, Sweden and Riga, Latvia), the three study visits (in Stuttgart, Germany, Malmo, Sweden and Badajoz, Spain) and the one site visit (Riga, Latvia) organized by OSEPA in 2010, facilitated the exchange and transferring of experience and successful practices among OSEPA partners and other participants, such as politicians, experts, open source software communities, and willing to learn individuals. In these events issues of licensing and ways of transferring good practices were explored. The economic benefit of FOSS was also stressed and supported by statistical evidence. Finally, role-model European regions revealed such as Badajoz and Valmiera and encouraged to roll out their knowledge experience and enthusiasm to other regions