EIFL FOSS Program July 2010 – January 2012 Free and Open Source Software Simon Ball EIFL FOSS Program Manager
EIFL-FOSS: The Advantages Licence fees for commercial software applications can be a barrier to the development of a modern ICT infrastructure in libraries Libraries in developing and transition countries require affordable, up-to-date software that can be adapted to suit local needs and languages
EIFL-FOSS: What we do A wide range of free and open source software (FOSS) applications is available for libraries, but staff often lack the IT skills required EIFL supports the deployment of FOSS and provides the necessary training, enabling libraries to achieve significant cost savings EIFL aids advocacy of FOSS to library directors and decision-makers
EIFL-FOSS: The History EIFL-FOSS has been working for 3 years already, with a series of pilot projects to develop skills and a tools knowledgebase on ILS software (Koha, Evergreen) as well as some support work with the Greenstone network in Africa
EIFL-FOSS: Priorities 1 Advocate FOSS benefits to library managers / directors / decision-makers These people are key to embedding FOSS in libraries, and the EIFL-FOSS program will target this area as a priority.
EIFL-FOSS: Priorities 2 Promote engagement with FOSS development and user communities Respond to community need for areas requiring support for FOSS skills training Raise awareness and understanding of FOSS use in libraries
EIFL-FOSS: Priorities 3 Extend network of librarians who can serve as FOSS champions But ALSO seeking a second network of FOSS advocates who can effect change at library director level – not necessarily technical but influential. Aim is to have a FOSS Coordinator or a FOSS advocate (or both) in each member country.
EIFL-FOSS: Work Plan 1 Two of the original ILS projects will be taken forward to uncover further issues relating to advocacy to senior management and issues relating to collaboration and expansion of networks of expertise
EIFL-FOSS: Work Plan 2 Further projects will be undertaken in other areas where FOSS has the potential to enhance activity. Examples include: <ul><li>Access To Resources eg resource management tools such as CUFTS, dbWiz, Shibboleth, GODOT
Disability Access to library systems eg Access Apps, distant or mobile phone access for those who cannot get to libraries (not just for disability reasons) </li></ul>YOUR suggestions of which areas may be useful to investigate would be most welcome.
EIFL-FOSS: Work Plan 3 Further projects will be undertaken to advance senior management awareness of potential FOSS solutions. The aim is to produce a toolkit for advocacy that can be used by library staff to provide the necessary information to decision-makers to effect a change where possible.
EIFL-FOSS: Work Plan 4 Advocacy, partnership and dissemination activities will take place alongside the project work, to strengthen links between the EIFL-FOSS network and key related communities across the world.