By Abigail Cabunoc Mayes

Since the Mozilla Science Lab launched two years ago, we’ve tested ways to help the research community work together to build new tools for science. Through our Collaborate platform and code sprints, we’ve seen that despite the interest in scientific software development, sustaining development and doing so collaboratively remain a challenge.

Pulling from the open source community, we’ve begun development on resources to bring some of those lessons and values to the scientific software community. The “Working Open” Project Guide acts as a first cut at norms and protocols for open source community organization and development, unpacking tips to facilitate collaborative learning and contributorship. We want to invest in leaders who can help the research community learn to build software together.

The guide focuses on a few practical ways to get started in open source, such as roadmapping, identifying pathways for new participants, engaging with contributors, open licensing and software citation. We’re also inviting feedback and contributions here.

By working openly, a project lead demonstrates and encourages learning and participation. While mentorship and community engagement are vital throughout the life of a project, a few key steps can jumpstart community involvement. This guide will outline ways to help elevate contributors to work more collaboratively and sustainably in the open.


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Abigail Cabunoc Mayes



Published: 14 Aug, 2015

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