Due to the growing interest shown by society and businesses in free software, and in keeping with UPC’s unfaltering commitment to this technology, UPC’s Board of Management launched the Free Software Chair to serve as a vehicle for all the initiatives undertaken by the University in this area.
The Chair, which was created in September 2004, aims to raise awareness of open-source software at UPC and in society at large. At UPC, the Chair aims to promote the use and development of open-source software, both amongst the teaching and research staff and administrative and service staff as well as amongst the student body. Beyond the university community, the Chair aims to channel the needs and interests of companies, government and society towards UPC’s team of experts, who will be able to offer them solutions crafted around free software.
The Chair, the first of its kind to be created at a Spanish university, is open to any and all projects as long as they promise to respect the philosophy regarding the development and use of open-source software as it is accepted by the international community of developers and users. The Free Software Chair also organises courses, seminars, workshops, working sessions and other actions relating to awareness-raising, and promotes agreements, projects and consultancy.
Precedents to the creation of this chair include the organisation of various editions of the Working Sessions on Free Software, UPC’s support of the declaration against the patentability of software in Europe (signed in May 2004) and the creation of the “lafarga.UPC.es” platform, in addition to other actions aimed at lending support to the development and democratisation of technology.