Letter from OpenForum Europe’s New Executive Director

10 January 2022

Author: Astor Nummelin Carlberg

We begin the new year – OpenForum Europe’s 20th year of operations – with exciting momentum, both for openness in digital policy and for our organisation. As we move into the next decade of OFE, I feel privileged to take on the role of Executive Director, with Sachiko Muto elevated to the role of Chair. 

In this moment of energy and optimism both for our organisation and within the Open Source community, it is my pleasure to invite you to our flagship conference: The EU Open Source Policy Summit 2022 taking place February 4.

The new level of ambition of this year’s conference reflects the increased importance given to ‘Open’ by policymakers across not just Europe but the world. The last decade has shown that open and collaborative innovation is no longer a theoretical concept. ‘Open’ lowers the barriers to competition, boosts innovation and increases welfare, while letting end-users maintain control and autonomy. Now, during the current decade, is when Europe and the world will have to deliver together.

This year’s conference also reflects the rising ambition level of OFE as an organisation when it comes to further moving the dial on these crucial issues. My predecessors Graham Taylor and Sachiko Muto have both contributed enormously to building a respected and trusted think tank. More importantly, they have been crucial in increasing the understanding of openness in digital policy and moving the conversation forward in Europe. I look forward to working, together with you, to continue their efforts.

The growing political recognition of openness is also seen in the caliber of speakers we are excited to welcome to this year’s summit, such as Minister Amélie de Montchalin, Maria Francesca Spatolisano and 25+ high-level speakers.

I would like to express my gratitude to our Board for their trust in me, and to both Sachiko and our outgoing Chair Graham Taylor for supporting me and the team during this transition. What they built and what I now take over is an organisation that is the only one of its kind, bringing together policy makers, academics and industry practitioners with the specific focus on open innovation and technologies. Pragmatic collaboration is built into our think tank’s DNA, but with a stable and unwavering footing in our Openness Principles

Last but absolutely not least, I would like to extend a huge thank you to the supporters and partners of OFE that together with the team has made all of our work and successes possible. Some of you have been with OFE from the start, and we especially thank you for your continued support. We are always looking for organisations and companies that share our vision, mission and principles to partner with us to take the necessary next steps to stay attuned to the times and maintain our role as a trusted partner in the transformational work needed across Europe.

I believe I speak for the full OFE team and our supporters when I say that we look forward with great anticipation to the future.

Happy New Year!

Astor Nummelin Carlberg