As part of their efforts to raise awareness and promote the application of free and open source software (FOSS) in public and private organizations, the Information Technology Authority (ITA) and Sultan Qaboos University represented in the FOSS Capacity Building Program Team has conducted the fifth workshop, under the theme of “the application of FOSS in the IT infrastructure at the Ministry of Health –opportunities and challenges”, Wednesday 10th April 2019  morning at Sas Center for Mobile Apps Development.

This workshop comes among a series of capacity building workshops on FOSS solutions to achieve the program objectives as agreed earlier in 2017 between the Information Technology Authority (ITA) and Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) represented by the college of engineering.

The workshop was attended by IT specialists and managers from government and private entities. During the workshop, a number of systems and applications used successfully and effectively at the ministry of Health were showcased including SAMBA open active guide presented by Faiza Aljabri, director of IT Infrastructure Department, and network monitoring system (Zabbix) presented by Tamam Alsharqi, network Technician. The workshop also included a presentation entitled “FOSS Development in Ministry of Health” delivered by Shaikha Alnomani, a programmer at Ministry of Health. The presentations were also followed by open discussions where participants exchange feedback.

It is worth to mention that the FOSS Capacity Building Program is the result of cooperation and joint efforts between the Information Technology Authority and Sultan Qaboos University to build competencies and develop free and open source software in order to enhance the strategic partnership between the two parties and to implement the recommendations of the study on the adoption and dissemination of free and open source software in the Sultanate.

The program seeks to achieve a number of objectives including intensifying awareness on the benefits of using FOSS solutions in different administrative systems in government and private organizations and its role in promoting innovation and entrepreneurship. It also aims at building competencies through training in specialized software and open source systems and developing the skills required for localization to benefit locally. In addition, it seeks to encouraging entrepreneurs to develop solutions and applications based on free and open source software, developing solutions and applications for public and private institutions based on free and open software, and Providing technical consultancy for projects that adopt free and open source solutions and applications in the public and private sectors.