IBM Corp. has expanded its relationship with the Brazilian government by signing a cooperation agreement to spend $1 million on the creation of a Knowledge and Technology Center to promote and develop the use of open software and standards.
The agreement builds on a statement of common interest signed by IBM and Brazil in October 2003 to help the growth of Linux and other open source software, and sees the technology giant working with Brazil’s Information Technology Institute, the Ministry of Culture, and the University of Brasilia.
Known locally as the Centro de Difusao de Tecnologia e Conhecimento, or CDTC, the center will be set up at the University of Brasilia and will support collaborative development and technological migration projects for public agencies and small companies. IBM and ITI will jointly manage the CDTC and define its strategies and priorities.
As well as Linux, the CDTC will also promote the OpenOffice.org alternative to Microsoft Corp’s Office productivity suite. Its first task will be to train 700 public service professionals from the Education Technology Nuclei, a government program aimed at supporting schools and education facilities, in order to explain the potential benefits of open software and standards.
The CDTC will also provide a development laboratory for open software testing, a library of open software knowledge, classroom training, a portal for access to CDTC knowledge for public agencies and the public, a call center to support government agencies and small businesses using open software, and an operating team including government experts, managers, and IBM trainees.