Government Open Source Mandates Drive Postgres Adoption Worldwide

February 19, 2016

Contributed by Keith Alsheimer

The explosion in data created by mobile devices, the Internet of Things and social media are causing governing bodies worldwide to find new ways to accommodate and harness information productively. Doing this requires the ability to scale data management infrastructure significantly as well as the agility to add to and adjust deployments nimbly to meet ongoing demands. Commercial data management software with its high license and maintenance costs and vendor lock-in makes it difficult for government IT managers to effectively meet these challenges. Open source database management systems like Postgres have improved dramatically over recent years to rival commercial alternatives in performance and security at enormously reduced cost of ownership and with flexible annual subscription based business models.

In order to take full advantage of the power of open source, governments need “commercial grade” suppliers to provide the support, tooling, services, training and additional features required to deploy mission critical environments in large scale. Therefore, governments that seek to expand usage of Postgres and comply with new open source policy initiatives have turned to EnterpriseDB® (EDB™) and EDB Postgres to meet new imperatives while turning their data centers into platforms of innovation. By doing so, they are able to transform their data centers, reducing spend and redirecting budget to data initiatives that support mission-critical business goals.

With nearly 10 million downloads in the past five years, PostgreSQL has become the standard open source database replacement for traditional vendors such as Oracle. EDB enhances open source PostgreSQL with additional performance, scalability, and security capabilities that governments require to succeed with open source database management.

In the United States alone, more than 150 federal Civilian, Defense, and Intelligence agencies have deployed EDB Postgres. These include many in the Department of Defense (DoD), such as the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), as well as the Army, Navy, and Air Force. This represents a significant increase in recent years in the United States, while EDB’s global government business has also grown with a CAGR of 65% over the past three years.

Global Policy Actions

Recent policy actions that help drive the increasing adoption of EDB Postgres worldwide include:

  • In the United States, the Obama Administration, through The Open Government Partnership, called for federal agencies to develop open source software policies. Government CIOs also face greater scrutiny in technology spending under the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA).
  • The European Union, through a resolution of the European Parliament, called for EU institutions to replace proprietary software with open source in order to reinforce technological independence.
  • The French government passed the Digital Republic Bill, which addresses a broad range of Internet and digital rights issues and features several high-profile initiatives for governments and schools to adopt open source software.
  • In India, the government issued a formal policy, the Policy on Adoption of Open Source Software for Government of India, which calls for central and local governments to consider open source software for new projects and for migrating existing projects.
  • In 2014, the UK Government joined the D5 Charter with partners Estonia, Israel, New Zealand and South Korea. The Charter laid out a series of commitments to support digital transformation of government and public services. Speaking to CIO, Andrew Meyer, the program head of the UK’s Health and Social Information Centre, which is overseen by the UK’s National Health Service, stated, “Open source can support the enterprise, and NHS is a huge enterprise.”
  • Also in the United Kingdom, EnterpriseDB is an approved supplier on the UK Government GCloud Framework, which is being pushed more into the mainstream of public sector procurement. This inclusion endorses EDB Postgres adoption and allows public sector organizations to buy services without having to participate fully in the competitive procurement process.

Budget Transparency

Many policy initiatives, particularly FITARA in the United States, call for greater transparency in financial relationships with vendors. Many governments are finding that years of working with traditional vendors have produced a complex web of licenses that are difficult to track, and that budgeting is difficult.

EDB Postgres satisfies calls for greater budget transparency through its subscription model. EDB Postgres is sold as a comprehensive subscription that includes (i) the database and management; (ii) integration and migration suites across multiple deployment options; and (iii) support and upgrades, with no additional per-feature, per-user costs. Governments that seek greater clarity in budgetary reporting have a simpler task counting subscriptions than trying to track complex licensing structures. 

Most importantly, EDB Postgres enables governments to take full advantage of the power of open source to better and more flexibly meet the growing data needs of their organizations.

For more information on how EDB can help your organization satisfy a particular mandate or transform your data center to redirect spend to new, most strategic initiatives, contact us at

Keith Alsheimer is Chief Marketing Officer at EnterpriseDB. 

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