A call on public administrations to practice what they preach and support open document formats

OFE Press Release - 15th September 2014 - Today marks the start of the Global Legislative Openness Week, an annual celebration of open, participatory legislative processes. For the occasion, we join a number of organisations in signing an open letter addressed to all national legislatures around the world to make parliamentary information open by default. Opening up legislative, and more generally governmental information is not only crucial to improve transparency and accountability, but also enables third parties to leverage the potential of that information through the development of applications and services that address public and private demands.

Full Text of the Release


OFE statement calling on STM Publishers to withdraw their model licenses

OFE Statement August 8th 2014 - OFE joined 57 other organisations in calling for the International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical (STM) Publishers to withdraw their model licenses and work with the community within the Creative Commons (CC) framework to build a scholarly literature that is compatible with wider human knowledge on the web. 

Full text of the statement

 

UK Government announcement - Open document formats selected to meet user needs

OFE Press Release July 23rd 2014 - OFE's UK Chapter welcomes this key policy announcement.  It is a fundamental step in implementing the Government's Open Standards Principles.
For the first time ever there is a default open format for Government documents.

The implications of a successful implementation will be widespread.  The potential is there to catalyse change well beyond central government. The Cabinet Office deserves every credit for a thorough and informed approach to being an intelligent adopter of standards.  This policy can deliver simpler user centric ICT decisions, more cost effective archiving, easier e-inclusion programmes and improved collaboration between government departments and between departments and the outside world.  If ever there was an organisation that runs on documents, it is the machinery of government.  An open foundation to the digital workings of government should be applauded.

The OFE UK Chapter volunteers look forward to supporting this policy through our activities and celebrating its success.

More:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/open-document-formats-selected-to-meet-user-needs

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/open-standards-for-government/sharing-or-collaborating-with-government-documents


Public procurement of ICT products in Europe still afflicted by references to brand names

OFE Press Release 15th July 2014 - For the sixth consecutive year, OpenForum Europe examined the EU Member States' practice of referring to specific trademarks when procuring for ICT products. In our latest report released in July 2014, we found that 22% of all tender notices issued contained an explicit references to specific brands – an increase of 5% since our previous report published in October 2013. This figure indicates a trend of continued discrimination

Link to OFE Procurement Monitoring Report  2013 – 2nd  Snapshot

 

 

Society is ready for a data-driven economy. Is European legislation keeping the pace?

OFE Brussels - 4th July 2014 - In a statement released today, OpenForum Europe (OFE) comments on the recently published Commission Communication on Big Data (“Towards a thriving data-driven economy”).  We welcome the Commission's actions regarding key developments which will enable a better harnessing of the benefits of a digital society. However, we express some concerns on specific areas. 

 We believe that the legislative framework should aim at providing a safe, flexible environment enabling open innovation. Open standards are a key component of this environment, and we applaud the Commission for pointing out their important role here. We hope to see the Commission working hand in hand with the industry to clarify the standards landscape on a number of big data areas.

 Full Text of the release

 

A step forward for Net Neutrality in Europe

OFE Statement - Brussels - 4th April 2014 - OpenForum Europe welcomes the historic vote on the new telecom package that took place in the European Parliament on April 3rd and congratulates MEPs and the Commission for their efforts to safeguard the Open Internet in Europe. In an unusually short period of 6 months, this initial phase of the legislative process managed to deliver a solid basis for the Council of the EU to work on. We have explained before why we believe that iron-clad guarantees for net neutrality are needed to ensure continued innovation and fair, open competition in the online ecosystem. The Internet is an enormous engine for growth and access to knowledge, and key to its success has always been the possibility for anyone, anywhere to freely create and share content with every other user on the network.
Full Text of the Release

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uk chapter  - LAUNCH

 

Open Forum Europe UK Chapter

 OFE (Openforum Europe) launches a formal UK Chapter, firmly endorsing the UK Cabinet Office's Open Standards Principles. The new Chapter is looking to support the Principles within central government and the diffusion of the ideas and benefits to the entire public sector and those engaged with it. In order to facilitate this, the UK Chapter has been set up to allow wider and easier interchange between community volunteers and supporters and the public sector.

Read more...

 
OpenForum Academy is an independent programme established by OpenForum Europe. It has created a link with academia in order to provide new input and insight into the key issues which impact the openness of the IT market.

OFE Round Table - Ensuring the security of critical ICT Infrastructure after Heartbleed: Should we leave it to the Community or does Government have a role?

OpenForum Academy (OFA) Round Table discussion on the security of critical ICT Infrastrucutre was held on 26 June 2014, at Silken Berlaymont Hotel, Brussels. Report is now available.

Round Table Report



Discriminatory practices continue to plague IT public procurement across Europe

 

For the fifth consecutive year, OpenForum Europe publishes a report on the EU Member States' practice of referring to specific trademarks when procuring computer software packages and information systems.

We found that almost 1 in 5 notices included technical specifications containg explicit references to trademarks.

These results clearly show that there is an entrenched and continuing EU-wide level of discrimination in the purchase of IT supplies. More than ever, there is urgent need for more transparent, open and fair EU and national procurement practices.

 Read more.....

 

In the UK OFE submits written evidence to Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) inquiry on Public Procurement.

Read Paper....

 

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