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The free and open source software group

Today, software has become indispensable in all fields of scientific research, as a research tool as well as a research product and an object of research.

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The modes of free and open development (“open source“) apply to the sphere of software (as well as to that of physical equipment), methodologies and principles that are at the heart of the open science initiative that the Committee for Open Science aims to promote and support. This involves making results openly available to as many people as possible, facilitating their reproducibility, capitalizing on the work carried out and the possibility of making improvements without redoing work. They are therefore essential to scientific progress.

In compliance with the principles of collaborative subsidiarity and production promoted and disseminated by free, open communities, all of the group’s missions will be carried out in synergy and collaboration with the categories of actors able to contribute their expertise and cooperation. These include regulatory authorities, third-party experts, scientific communities (researchers and support staff), promotion and dissemination structures, European and international counterparts, etc.

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  • To propose scientific production metrics adapted to open and free development modes. Within this framework, to study the mechanisms for indexing free, open software and hardware and the production of indicators which can measure the penetration of these development modes into the scientific community ;
  • To monitor initiatives relatives to free and open development nationally and internationally particularly in the field of scientific research ;
  • To help the Committee for Open Science answer questions from the scientific community ;
  • To support the growth of software and hardware development modes in the different scientific and support communities and particularly :
    • To contribute to the production and dissemination of methodologies for reference and best practices related to free, open production and the governance of projects including elements concerning their indexing, long-term preservation, promotion, dissemination and conservation as heritage ;
    • To propose action plans to enable higher education and research ministries and organizations to promote free, open development modes in research support actions (calls for projects, etc.).
photo Roberto Di Cosmo
Professor of computer science, leader of the Software Heritage initiative
photo Roberto Di Cosmo
Roberto Di Cosmo
Professor of computer science, leader of the Software Heritage initiative

Roberto Di Cosmo, professor of computer science, works at Inria to lead the Software Heritage initiative.

Traditionally, his research interests lie at the crossroads between functional programming (and its pure core, lambda computation), logic, category theory, game theory and parallel and distributed programming. More recently, he has become interested in the application of formal methods for solving the problems presented by the large masses of software that are available in the Free Software Universe. In this context he has set up and coordinated the European Mancoosi project.

Roberto Di Cosmo contributed to the creation of IRILL, an initiative to research and innovate on free software. In 2014, he developed the vision that led to the creation of Software Heritage, a long-term initiative to collect, preserve and make readily available the source code of all software ever written.

For the past twenty years, he has been involved in an activity of science popularization aimed to raise awareness among the various actors in society of the dangers of computer monopolies. He has concentrated on promoting alternatives, particularly free software, of which France is a major player.

photo François Pellegrini
Professor of computer science and a member of the college of the National Commission for Computing and Liberties
photo François Pellegrini
François Pellegrini
Professor of computer science and a member of the college of the National Commission for Computing and Liberties

François Pellegrini is a professor of computer science at the university of Bordeaux and a member of the college of the national commission for computer science and liberties (CNIL).

One of his specialties is law (and, to a lesser extent, economics) of free software.

During his term as Deputy Vice-President in charge of digital issues at the University of Bordeaux, he initiated the project of an open access “journal factory” for scientific publications, whose governance is being extended to other institutions.

  • Mélanie CLÉMENT-FONTAINE (Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin)
  • Thierry LEGOU (CNRS/INSHS)
  • Camille MAUMET (Inria)
  • Patricia MIRABILE (Sorbonne Université)
  • Patrick MOREAU (CNRS)
  • Gabriel SCHERER (Inria)
  • Nicolas THIERY (Université Paris-Sud)
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