Ahead of the parliamentary elections in Greece last week, the Greek Free/Open Source Software Society (GFOSS) contacted all political parties to ask about their positions [in Greek] with regard to open software, open data, open hardware and open government. The four parties to respond all came out generally in favour of openness. Some of them were even able to present very detailed planning on how to improve the current institutional and legislative framework and outlined how openness could help reconstruct Greek productivity.
GFOSS calls this the most mature response they have ever received.
Clearly, the political dimensions of openness, as well as its place, are crystallizing. Some parties put more emphasis on improving openness via public infrastructure and organisation; others put their trust in the open market. Overall, however, there is the general perception that openness may help to improve the everyday life of the people, and the idea that the availability of more knowledge to the citizen is a key element in the transparency of public sector operations. Furthermore, it is clear to all parties that openness and sharing do not hinder but rather strengthen economic activity and production value.
Interestingly, parties were able to talk about cutting-edge technologies such as open hardware. They all appear to agree on these being pivotal to the new production model the country needs, and that openness is to be maintained, strengthened and protected. Finally, they realize that the use of open education, both as a tool and a topic, can have a multiplier effect.