Portuguese public sector recognised by the Open Source Award

Public sector institutions recognised for their involvement in Open Source in Portugal

Published on: 16/12/2020

The Portuguese Prémio Abertura Award 2020 was presented at the Open Source Lisbon conference on 11 November by the Portuguese Open Source Businesses Association, ESOP. While the winner is a private sector entity, the runner up prize has been awarded to the public sector players: the Portuguese Central Bank and the Informatics Institute of Social Security for their implementations of Open Source solutions for their citizen-facing needs.

The first runner up is Banco de Portugal, the country’s central bank. It was recognised for the implementation of an Open Source solution used to support the Statistics Portal of the Bank. The Portal provides access to over 300.000 statistical series, infographics and texts on Portuguese and the euro zone economy. Thanks to the new solution users have better access to the data, can search and cross-check the data from different domains more easily and export content based on their needs.

The second distinguished public institution  is Instituto de Informática (Informatics Institute of Social Security) for its implementation of the Social Security app that had over 125.000 installations in its first 6 months. The app was created to enable citizens to access their social security data and services more easily. The Institute is known for its use of Open Source for its infrastructure needs and a long-lasting commitment to developing and implementing in the open.

The award was introduced in 2009 by ESOP in order to distinguish organisations that have been dedicated to using or promoting Open Source Software in the country and since then many public sector entities were nominated and awarded the prize which shows the high level of commitment of the Portuguese public sector to Open Source solutions. As a matter of fact, public sector implementations of Open Source solutions outnumbered the private sector in terms of nominations for this award which might be showing the overall positive trend on usage of Open Source in Portuguese public sector.

Paulo Ribeiro (Vice President, ESOP) explains that there are several reasons for such a high number of public institutions that have been distinguished for their use and involvement in Open Source throughout the years. One of them is that it is often easier to identify the usage of Open Source solutions in the public sector thanks to higher transparency than in the private sector, but also that public sector institutions are highly involved in Open Source in Portugal, appreciating its adaptability and flexibility. 

More information about the award and the recognised entities is available on ESOP website.