The council of the government of the autonomous province of Trentino on Wednesday morning approved a law on free and open source software and open data. The law instructs public administrations to prepare migrations plans to switch to free and open source software and to make its software applications available as open source.
The new law aims to start promoting and supporting "good practice in the area of ICT". The council of Trentino wants public administrations to use open standards for data and communication, and to develop and use free and open source software.
The text is a combination of proposals submitted by councillors Michele Nardelli of the Partito Democratico (Democratic Party) and Roberto Bombarda of the Verdi (Greens).
According to a report published by the province on Tuesday, councillor Nardelli argues that moving to free and open source software is important because in a digital world the tools are crucial. "The methods of research and technology are changing rapidly, and the information revolution is changing our lives. (Using) this type of software will eliminate barriers, and will give all users the same level of access and rights."
The province also quoted Bombarda, saying that the law sets ambitious goals. "Creating one of the highest levels of use of information technology and services, and at the same time increases the efficiency of public administrations and results in significant savings."
The new law also instructs the province to work on getting schools to switch to this kind of software. "The Province, considering the educational value of free and open source software, content and of open data, promotes its use in education and training."
The province has already started a project to get schools to use tablets computers fitted with free and open source applications. In early June a proposal to start a pilot, submitted by the same two political parties, was approved unanimously.
Trentino is one among many of the country's regions that have laws on free and open source. Last week a similar law was adopted in the Italian region of Puglia. Another is proposed in the region of Calabria.
Discussion on the law, including the law text, by the province of Trentino (in Italian)
Ansa news item (in Italian)
Trento Today news item (in Italian)