Four associations have recently published the Brno Open Source Declaration (https secure connection not available at the moment), which lays the path for the creation of the Czech National Open Source Programme Office (OSPO). The Brno Declaration has been published following a series of events during the Czech Presidency, namely the announcement of code.europa.eu at the Open Source Driving the European Digital Decade, the Creative Bureaucracy Festival Prague 2022 and the EU public officials CIO Meeting. The Declaration aims at creating and activating the open source community in the public and academic sector to increase collaboration in these sectors.
The Czech public sector is steadily raising its involvement with open source. Through their national open source portal and multiple projects, the Czech Republic has managed to better organise its use of open source in public administrations. The Declaration builds on those past efforts from different public and civil society actors to move towards a more organised form of open source governance, a national OSPO.
Lucie Smolka, Chairwoman of the Committe for Open Cities : “This declaration is a great step towards the establishment of the Czech National OSPO. We are very happy to have been able to cooperate with all the actors of the Czech Open Source community towards this goal.”
Quoting the Open Source Software Strategy from the European Commission, the declaration points at the potential role of the future Czech OSPO to achieve the strategy’s goal. Through a well-organised digital governance and in collaboration with the upcoming Digital and Information Agency, the Czech Republic could be able to better work towards an open and transparent digitalisation process for its public services.
The Declaration also sets the first actions steps towards the establishment of the Czech National OSPO:
1. To sign a Memorandum of Cooperation between the key local and global stakeholders both from public sector and academia willing to work on establishing the Czech National OSPO in Brno.
2. To sign Manifesto of the EU public services OSPO network created by City of Paris and European Commission OSPOs and to be active in the EU OSPO public sector OSPO regular meetings.
3. To start the process of cooperation between Czech and international open source communities to establish a functional cooperation on particular projects (e.g. with Paris, Baltimore or Swedish OSPO) and to support the efforts of the Swedish and Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union in this area in 2023.
4. To further develop the Czech National Open Source Portal code.gov.cz as a key element of further Czech National OSPO activities and to establish functional collaboration between the newly established Digital Information Agency of the Czech Republic (DIA) in 2023.
5. To monitor and to promote the activities and case studies of the Czech Republic in the area of open source towards the public sector and academic institutions.
6. To establish the first virtual and later physical Czech National OSPO office in Brno. Till that time, the “pre-secretariat” of the Czech National OSPO is managed by the NGO Otevřená města (Open Cities).