Blog post

New Research: A CIO’s Perspective On Open Source

By Mark Driver | January 31, 2011 | 0 Comments

I’ve just published a new research note on a “CIO’s Perspective On Open Source”.  Gartner clients can get the full report here.

I’ve included the highlights below but as usual the real ‘meat’ of the analysis is in the full report….

A CIO’s Perceptive On Open Source

An open-source governance program is the key to maximizing open-source software (OSS) IT value and minimizing risk. The CIO’s office is the key to successfully executing this effort within the enterprise.

Key Findings

  • The presence of open source is inevitable within mainstream mission-critical IT portfolios.
  • OSS assets can affect IT initiatives in positive and negative ways through gains or losses in such things as efficiency, productivity, functionality and security.
  • The principal risks of open source are driven by unmanaged software assets that can introduce technical and legal challenges (e.g., security, intellectual property management and audit compliance).
  • The IT benefits of open source are driven by a confluence of cost optimization, flexibility and innovation when managed properly.
  • Above all other considerations, the successful execution of an open-source governance program drives the difference between positive and negative impact.
  • The CIO’s office is uniquely qualified to sponsor a corporate governance open-source program, enforce it within the boundaries of IT and promote it across business units as well.


  • Educate IT and business leaders regarding the positive and negative aspects of open-source assets within the corporate technology portfolio.
  • Establish an open-source governance program that is sponsored by the office of the CIO and promoted by a cross-disciplined team of key IT and business leaders. Its mission will be to minimize potential risks and maximize the value afforded by open-source solutions.
  • Within this program, focus first on eliminating the potential loss of IT value through risk associated with unmanaged (or undermanaged) open-source assets. As soon as the program is established, expand its scope to more aggressively leverage open-source solutions for positive IT value benefits (when and where appropriate).

A CIO’s Perspective on Open-Source Software

The Gartner Blog Network provides an opportunity for Gartner analysts to test ideas and move research forward. Because the content posted by Gartner analysts on this site does not undergo our standard editorial review, all comments or opinions expressed hereunder are those of the individual contributors and do not represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management.

Comments are closed