Despite its widespread use throughout myriad industries, the economic impact of Open Source Software (OSS) is poorly understood and poorly measured. Further, due to the decentralized nature of the OSS development process, security issues are not always addressed in a timely manner.
The Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard has partnered with the Linux Foundation to establish the Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII) - a network of researchers and practitioners from across academia, government, nonprofit, and industry working to advance the field of open source software. The CII will examine the prevalence, impact, and durability of OSS in the economy via research and engagement with the community that will engender the adoption of beneficial norms and effective practices to enhance the security and efficacy of all OSS projects.
Through the creation of a shared data repository, the CII aims to take a census of all OSS projects in the economy, identify critical open source projects, measure their economic value and work in partnership with OSS leaders and community members to identify security issues and to enshrine security and quality as valued norms and best practices.