Open Source Release Policies

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See also Guidelines for Releasing Open Source and Open Source Usage Policies

Publishing Source Code

List of government policies about creating new open source software -- either by procurement from a contractor or by government developers writing the code themselves. We appreciate any help in updating this list, and of course we do not represent it to be complete.

  • 18F General Services Administration Source Code Policy
  • US Consumer Finance Protection Agency Policy on Open Source - also see their blog post
  • NASA Policy on Open Source
  • United States of America: Open Source Release Policies are somewhat complex at the federal level, but David Wheeler has created a helpful guide, Publicly Releasing Open Source Software Developed for the U.S. Government - This article summarizes when the U.S. federal government or its contractors may publicly release, as open source software (OSS), software developed with government funds. This section is intended for non-lawyers, to help them understand the basic rules they must follow.
  • UK: Government departments, who now have delegated authority from the Controller to license their software and source code using open source licences, and other public sector bodies that are involved in developing their own software and source code are encouraged to make their software and source code available as openly as possible. This requires a flexible approach to licensing. Developers in the public sector may choose to release their software and source code under the Open Government Licence. Alternatively, the Open Source Initiative maintains a list of approved open source licences covering software and source code that developers in the public sector can use. - UK Policy for licensing source code
  • Portland, OR: Open Source Software can enable the City of Portland to use, copy, customize and redistribute software it deploys for government services; - Portland policy (source pdf)
  • Vancouver, BC: License any software applications developed by the City of Vancouver such that they may be used by other municipalities, businesses, and the public without restriction. - Vancouver Policy (source pdf)

Other Resources