[OSGeo-Discuss] Training and certification

Tyler Mitchell tmitchell at osgeo.org
Fri Jun 10 00:18:36 PDT 2011

I appreciate all these varied viewpoints, so keep them coming!  It's not my recommendation, so I don't have anything to defend thankfully ;-)

Stepping back, I wonder if maybe the high response on this survey question more reflects an innate need that some feel is not being currently met.  That is, how wide really is the grasp of current trainers to meet the global demand?  

I know that I'm not familiar with all of the various trainers out there, but how geographically disbursed are they and how many students do they reach each year?  Not expecting an answer but certainly makes me wonder if that's what respondents were thinking too.  Certainly also makes me want to start cataloguing trainers ... hmmm.

Thanks for the thoughts.. hope there are more!

On 2011-06-10, at 12:08 AM, Cameron Shorter wrote:

> On 10/06/2011 4:07 PM, Paolo Cavallini wrote:
>> Il 09/06/2011 21:38, Tyler Mitchell ha scritto:
>>> Anyone else thinking about this or want to weigh-in on what their thoughts were?
>> If this competes with the activities the professionals and enterprises are currently
>> offering, -1. We want OSGeo to support our work, not to compete with it. This would
>> have a number of negative consequences, IMHO.
>> All the best.
> Like Paolo, I'm very nervous about OSGeo taking on a training role for the same reasons.
> Providing good training is a difficult business, which is provided by many of the OSGeo businesses who back OSGeo. If OSGeo starts to act as a business by providing such training, then OSGeo will start competing against its' core supporters. This has the potential to fracture the very strong OSGeo community, which is a bad thing.
> And while in principle, the idea of OSGeo providing a trusted, unbiased training certification program, I think a very quick review of the business case behind it will make it unfavourable. Either the training program will be of low quality and low credibility, or it will attach such high cost to courses that the courses will be harder to sell.
> Creating certification takes a lot of work, which needs to be resourced. I might be wrong, but I can't see volunteers stepping forward to build a certification program, at least not in the immediate future. Maybe some Governments might step up (as has been done for certifying OGC standards), but I expect governments will have better things to spend money on. The other group who could write a certification program are training organisations themselves. But I don't think these training organisations are likely to make much extra money with a certification in place. And I don't think trainees are likely prepared to pay an extra 30% for their course in order to see a "certification" stamp. (And that 30% is just to pay for certification development, before OSGeo makes a profit).
> I'd like to be proven wrong, but I don't think we are ready for OSGeo certification, and I think it is bad business for OSGeo to compete with OSGeo companies by providing training directly.
> -- 
> Cameron Shorter
> Geospatial Solutions Manager
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