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A sustainable project

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In 2014 the developer team explored the question of sustainability, and after carefully weighing up all the options, the software was put forward and accepted for incubation by the Apereo Foundation in September 2014. As the software has developed, and the community of developers has grown, the share of the work being done by the University of Nottingham has fallen and significant pieces of work from other individuals and organisations have been contributed to the project's codebase. Transitioning the software to the Apereo Foundation reflects the ongoing growth of the community and maturity of the software, and removes a number of barriers to adoption for potential users. It removes a single point of failure for the project by placing ownership firmly with the developer community, and brings a more robust framework of governance and decision making to the developers.

We are really excited about the transition to Apereo.

Dear All,


I am really excited to be able to announce that The Xerte Project has been accepted as an incubating project at The Apereo Foundation (https://www.apereo.org/). This is a fantastic opportunity for the project – as you know, The University of Nottingham has led the developments over the years. Over the last few years, with increasing contributions from a growing community of developers it is fair to say that Nottingham's contribution is now a much smaller percentage of the total than it once was. This reflects the growing volume of work, rather than a dwindling commitment on our part, and we remain dedicated to the project as an important platform for innovation, and for the creation and delivery of high quality content to learners here at the University.

As the project has grown, we have turned to questions around its sustainability. We have spent a lot of time over the last eighteen months or so exploring various options: we know that sustainability is a key issue for those looking to adopt the technology in other organisations and we understand that the current situation raises some questions for potential adopters: there is a sense that the project has a single point of failure. As priorities have changed here at the University, and the shape of my team has changed over the years, we do have fewer resources to put into the project than we used to have. We also appreciate that the current situation makes it hard for the project to achieve its full potential. As the only open source tool in its class it really deserves to increase its reach into new sectors and to find ways to generate and use revenue. Also, as the developer community has grown, it is increasingly important to ensure that the project continues to develop within a rigorous framework.

Over the last 18 months we have carefully explored all the options available to us, and we have chosen Apereo for its solid presence in educational technology and its excellent cultural fit with The Xerte Project. I'm really excited about this opportunity, and I'm really looking forward to working with Apereo through the incubation process.

My thanks go to all our users, contributors and developers, without whom the project could not have reached this significant milestone.


Julian Tenney

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