Brussels / 3 & 4 February 2024


Defend FOSS: From innovation to world-wide positive change

Open Source technology, practices, and thinking have revolutionized how we innovate, collaborate, and do business. The impact goes beyond our daily work — it is everywhere — we won! But there's a downside: We have forgotten to tell people what makes us and Open Source different.

We must remember how radical and important Open Source is. It is extraordinary that we build international communities of experts sharing our best ideas, building businesses, and creating value.

Open Source — and we — have the potential to create more positive change in the world. And we need to tell the world, again.

At the same time, proprietary systems and vendors are winning pitches in government and elsewhere that should be no-brainers for Open Source solutions.

What comes next, and what do we have to do to make sure we can continue to make a positive difference with Open Source in the future?

This session will explore open source at different scales, from small but meaningful, to vast and vital to our future. What has open source made possible? What have we done with it in the last 24 years?

A look back at our origins, the changes and opportunities open source has enabled from small and personal to large. What could applying open source philosophy and practices — "thinking open source" — bring to society, the world, and the future beyond our daily work and business, from promoting peaceful and democratic societies to providing international development aid?

Openness and sharing, good governance and democracy. Can open source practice teach us how to live in a peaceful, free, and democratic society?


“This session came with the best value I've experienced myself for ages. I'm so glad I went there, the impact of FOSS principles to our societies is totally underrated. It was overwhelming!”


Photo of Mathias Bolt Lesniak Mathias Bolt Lesniak
Photo of Jeffrey A. Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire