Posted by: commonsresource | June 9, 2010

Another BRIC in the wall – Brazil sees Open Source as Their Secret Weapon

Earlier this morning, TweetDeck alerted me to Alan Shimel’s Brazil Wants To Be The Next India and Open Source Is Their Secret Weapon post on his Open Source Fact and Fiction blog on Network World’s Open Source Subnet. In his post, Alan references Angelica Mari’s Open source could be Brazil’s real advantage post on the ComputerWorld Management Matters blog.

While I would strongly encourage you to read both short posts, the gist of the analysis is well stated in Angelica’s summary of Flavio Grynzpan’s opinion of the Brazilian IT Industry:

In essence, his opinion is that despite Brazil’s potential as an outsourcing destination, the country simply cannot compete with other countries such as India in terms of wage arbitrage. The fact that many people in the IT industry don’t speak English fluently – even though that is rapidly changing – is another significant issue. Grynzpan reckons that Brazil has to find a unique selling proposition and its vast pool of knowledge in open source software could be the real advantage of the local IT industry and could lead to the country becoming a global leader in that segment.

Or as Alan points out

there is an inordinate amount of expertise around using and developing open source solutions in the country. The government and business leaders believe that this open source expertise will prove very valuable to potential customers wanting software solutions built quickly, efficiently and securely. By building on open source know how, the Brazilians think they can compete with the likes of the big outsource firms in India and China.

And as Alan also points out, this perspective offers an interesting lesson for the US (and Canada).  It is also a wake-up call to the other BRIC countries of India, China, and Russia on the strategic importance of open source software based development.  All in all, another BRIC in the wall!

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