Repositories for software and services developed by and for public administrations have multiple advantages, emphasises Elena Muñoz Salinero, head of Spain’s technology transfer centre (Centro de Transferencia de Technologica, CTT). Repositories make it easier to find suitable solutions, reduce costs, and let users share best practices.
On 2 June, Ms Muñoz drew attention to government software repositories at OpenExpo 2016, one of Spain’s annual open source conferences. The CTT is home to one of the larger such repositories in Europe, hosting 338 projects, and providing links to hundreds of other projects on similar platforms hosted by Spain’s regional governments and the European repository at the Joinup eGovernment platform.
Ms Muñoz listed some of the advantages of repositories, including the fact that they:
- aggregate information on eGovernment solutions;
- facilitate learning from the experience of others;
- reduce the time needed for development and implementation;
- increase interaction between eGovernment professionals; and
- allow public administrations to work together.
All of these solutions are available to public administrations, and all those published under open source licences are available publicly, the head of the CTT explained.
Going with GitHub
In April, CTT began promoting its ICT solutions on on GitHub, a cloud-based source code management system. CTT expects that in the future, more of its open source solutions will be developed online and collaboratively, using GitHub. “By using GitHub, we’re encouraging public administrations and the open source communities to work together”, Ms Muñoz said.
Spanish law and policies are nudging the country’s public administrations to share their software solutions, she said, preferably under an open source licence, and if possible the EUPL. Repositories of solutions, enabling reuse, create a common knowledge base, she added. “Public administrations have similar tasks and face similar organisations issues. Addressing these separately leads to multiplication of efforts and un-interoperable services.”