This paper reviews the main theoretical and practical arguments in favor and against government policies supporting Free/Open Source Software (F/OSS). Using information gathered from the OSOR.eu website, we build an original dataset about public interventions related to F/OSS, showing that across Europe public adoption and advisory are the most common policies. Our analysis suggests that, to evaluate in a meaningful way rationales, motivations and consequences of such public interventions, one has to properly distinguish between the various roles played by policy makers and the different categories of software involved. We provide empirical evidence that F/OSS support is stronger in countries i) where e-government services are more largely available, and ii) where the domestic software industry is lagging behind. This evidence supports common views among F/OSS advocates.

Public intervention for free/open source software

COMINO, Stefano;
2011

Abstract

This paper reviews the main theoretical and practical arguments in favor and against government policies supporting Free/Open Source Software (F/OSS). Using information gathered from the OSOR.eu website, we build an original dataset about public interventions related to F/OSS, showing that across Europe public adoption and advisory are the most common policies. Our analysis suggests that, to evaluate in a meaningful way rationales, motivations and consequences of such public interventions, one has to properly distinguish between the various roles played by policy makers and the different categories of software involved. We provide empirical evidence that F/OSS support is stronger in countries i) where e-government services are more largely available, and ii) where the domestic software industry is lagging behind. This evidence supports common views among F/OSS advocates.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11390/867941
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