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May 11, 2010

Transfer Summit

Next month I'm giving a couple of talks as part of the Transfer Summit event in Oxford, aimed at bringing together academia and business in Open Source. My own experiences in this area have been on the Apache Wookie (incubating) project, which started out in an academic project (TenCompetence) but is now being incubated by the Apache Software Foundation. Part of this process has involved connecting with a much broader range of organisations, including SMEs and large companies as well as universities and foundations, all of which bring something different to the project.

This meant persuading our Institute to actively commit to supporting our staff engaging in an open community process with no promise of future funding, rather than dumping some code in a repository at the end of the project and hoping somehow that something magical will happen. I had to draft and redraft a business case, all the time making the arguments about risks and opportunities for our management team. However, looking back I can safely say the actual results - in income alone - far exceeded my most optimistic projections.

An OSS strategy has proven for to be extremely successful for our small research unit, in terms of funding, reputation, partnerships, and academic opportunities, and this event is an opportunity for me to tell that story to a wider audience - so do come along if you're interested to find out more.

For more details and to register see

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