Over the past six months, two New America programs, Digital Impact and Governance Initiative (DIGI) and Public Interest Technology (PIT), researched a high-level framework for approaching the development of digital public goods using open source software (OSS) principles and practices to maximize the reuse of existing software. Open source principles are an integral part of well-designed digital solutions. The Framework outlines what open source software is, the benefits and risks associated with it, and provides steps for using open source tools in your organization. While there are other important principles for building digital public solutions, such as user inclusion and open data, we focused on the value of open source software in this report.

Times are troubling, but they may also present a window for change as governments conceive and implement new digital solutions. Between responding to the pandemic to administering benefits and managing public health to valuing human rights and respecting civic engagement, governments can and should do better supporting communities. Innovative jurisdictions both here and abroad are proving that it is possible to iterate quickly and build tech that works. Open source solutions may not be the only path to better government services, but the platforms can improve public transparency, responsiveness, and accountability. Open source can be part of the solution to building a better government and fostering a stronger level of trust in public institutions.

Full Agenda TBA

The State of Open Source and Government
This panel will cover the key concepts to prioritize when pursuing open source government solutions and discuss examples of open source success stories

Using Open Source Software During a Global Crisis
This panel will explore how governments have used or reused open source solutions during our current global crisis to speed innovation, resilience, and responsiveness

Speaker list in formation, confirmed speakers include:

  • Laura Kogler, Head of Engineering, Code for America
  • Robin Carnahan, Fellow, Georgetown University, Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation
  • Raylene Yung, Co-Founder and CEO, U.S. Digital Response (USDR)
  • Angelica Quirarte, Assistant Secretary, California Government Operations Agency
  • Cecilia Muñoz, Vice President for Public Interest Technology and Local Initiatives at New America
  • Tomicah Tillemann, Executive Director of the Digital Impact and Governance Initiative (DIGI) at New America
  • Hana Schank, Director of Strategy for Public Interest Technology at New America
  • Mark Lerner, New America Fellow

About Transformation

Transformation is a groundbreaking online event series examining how innovation and technology can reshape our institutions in a post-pandemic world. Each month, we bring together key leaders revolutionizing the structures that power our societies. The series explores breakthroughs that are making economic and governance systems more efficient, transparent, and accountable. Together, we’re creating a blueprint for building more resilient societies during and beyond the coronavirus pandemic.