The Economic impact of open source software on innovation and the competitiveness of the ICT sector (EU)

The European Commission Study about the Impacts of FLOSS has now been published. (Direct link to PDF of study)

While there are many interesting things that can be seen from the Executive Summary alone, one paragraph stood out from past conversations with policy makers and educators who had misconceptions about FLOSS.

Proprietary packaged software firms account for well below 10% of employment of software developers in the U.S., and "IT user" first account for over 70% of software developers employed with a similar salary (and thus skill) level. This suggests a relatively low potential for cannibalisation of proprietary software jobs by FLOSS, and suggests a relatively high potential for software developers jobs to become increasingly FLOSS-related.

Whether your issue is job creation (governments) or job training (schools), it is clear that the legacy proprietary-only (and sometimes platform specific, such as Microsoft) proposals are ill advised. FLOSS needs to become a core part of job creation and job training strategies.

(LinuxToday linked to this article)

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European Commission vouches for open source

A CNet news.com article by Richard Thurston also talks about this report.