ESOP, which represents Portugal’s open source services providers, will try to persuade towns and cities in the country to pool their efforts on this type of software, taking a cue from Belgium, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden.
The trade group will contact villages, towns and cities that actively use open source. This could include Seixal, Resende, Idanha-a-Nova, Mondim de Basto, Ponta Delgada and others. The group is considering to organise a workshop, and invite one or more representatives from other countries and the European Commission’s ISA² Programme.
ESOP plans to invite:
- Belgium’s Imio, an IT service provider set up in 2011 by the Walloon government, that now offers open source services to 75% of municipalities in the region;
- Denmark’s OS2, a partnership of local public service and open source service providers that services 75 of the countries 98 municipalities;
- France’s Adullact, and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté;
- The Dutch Common Ground initiative; and
- Sweden’s KIVOS, in which ten municipalities in the west of the country pool resources to develop open-source-based ICT solutions.
ESOP hopes the meeting will kick-start the country’s local administrations to join forces. “We already promote the use of open source in municipalities, and linking them to communities in other member states is an opportunity to raise awareness,” says Paulo Ribeiro, ESOP’s vice-president.
Meanwhile, the town of Seixal, which is using open source across its departments, is ready to accept ESOP’s invitation and looks forward to the workshop. “Only through cooperation will it be possible to achieve this goal,” says Rute Solipa of the city’s IT department. “Seixal is available to host and promote open source conferences and meetings, sharing and learning models.”
Earlier this month, ESOP representatives met with Adullact at the ‘Open Source beyond 2020’ conference, organised by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Informatics (DIGIT) and the Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (CONNECT).