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UK government embraces open source

Open Source - growth
Open Source - growth

The UK government is going to embrace open source, announcing an open standards plan that could herald a move away from proprietary software.

In a move that some suggest could save £600 million a year, open source software will be adopted 'when it delivers best value for money' with the government avoiding being 'locked into proprietary software'.

The government's action plan:

  • Ensure that the government adopts open standards and uses these to communicate with the citizens and businesses that have adopted open source solutions

  • Ensure that open source solutions are considered properly and, where they deliver best value for money are selected for government business solutions
  • Strengthen the skills, experience and capabilities within government and in its suppliers to use open source to greatest advantage
  • Embed an open source culture of sharing, re-use and collaborative development across government and its suppliers
  • Ensure that systems integrators and proprietary software suppliers demonstrate the same flexibility and ability to re-use their solutions and products as is inherent in open source.

The move to open source will occur when there is "no overall cost-difference between open and non-open source products."