Open Source and InnerSource Skills in Ireland
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Astor Nummelin Carlberg
Open source has been reported to accelerate innovation, improve
code quality, and increase efficiencies within organisations. It is recognised as being central to all future technological advancements. InnerSource, which seeks to leverage open source principles and create communities behind a corporate firewall, is linked to removing silos and bottlenecks, improving collaboration and developer productivity.
Open source is now critical for both the private and public sector. 98% of the world’s software now contains open source software. The European Commission’s Open Source Strategy 2020-2023 identified open source software as an enabler for innovation and the Commission also recently released a study showing that open source software and hardware are key for the region’s digital transformation and can be a major boost to the region’s GDP. Industry reports confirm there is a global shortage of qualified open source and InnerSource talent.
Following a multi-stage study involving a survey and a series of interviews with experts from industry and the public sector in Ireland, we find that there is a broad set of skills required for optimal use and creation of open source software and hardware. Skills required include technical engineering skills as well as non-technical skills such as legal, sales and marketing. Local businesses, international companies based in Ireland, and Irish public sector organisations all report challenges in finding talent locally with the required practical experience to help them deliver their open source and InnerSource priorities.
Investing in developing open source and InnerSource skills would help fulfil the talent needs of Ireland’s organisations. Considering the global talent shortage in this space, it would help position Ireland as a leader in the broader open source and InnerSource ecosystem.