Mayor Ude wants
Nellie Kroes and Joaquín Almunia, Vice President of the European Commission and
Commissioner responsible for competition, to make sure that public
administrations use free and open source software "so that public
knowledge remains accessible in the future."
As head of the
German association of municipalities, Munich's
mayor wrote to Commissioner Kroes to ask her to "remain committed to the
use of open standards for electronic documents and to the use of free and open
The mayor urges
Kroes to make compulsory the use of open document standards for all of the EU's
public institutions. The exclusive use of open standards safeguards that data
remains accessible, regardless of the software used to create the documents, he
writes. "A pan-European commitment to the use of these standards would
make the cooperation between authorities in Europe
easier, reduce the workload and help to save costs."
With this advocacy
letter, Ude goes against a recommendation published in June 2011 by the
Inter-Institutional Committee for Informatics, that EU institutions should continue to
use a proprietary office document format. This, he writes, hinders smooth
cooperation between public authorities.
invites the European Commission to take Munich
as an example. The city is moving its entire IT infrastructure, applications
and office communication over to open standards and free and open source
software. "Using free and open source software allows you to install an
innovative and secure IT infrastructure, offering a sustainable access to all
or many IT applications."