Abstract - The Information Society 26(1)

Software as Risk: Introduction of Open Standards in the Danish Public Sector

Sofie Blinkenberg Federspiel and Benedikte Brincker

In June 2006 the Danish parliament passed a resolution introducing open standards for software in the public sector. Open standards ensure interoperability in software. The introduction of open standards facilitates the spread of alternative software solutions, such as open source software, into environments (e.g. the public sector) that have hitherto been dominated by software produced by the proprietary software industry. This article analyses the political process that led to the passing of the resolution. We argue that the concepts of risk and governmentality associated with Ulrich Beck and Mitchell Dean allow us to theorise about this process. In so doing, we draw attention to the significance of the notion of risk in the context of public sector software.


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