publiccode.yml is a metadata standard for repositories containing software developed or acquired by the Public Administration, aimed at making them easily discoverable and thus reusable by other entities.

By including a publiccode.yml file in the root of a repository, and populating it with information about the software, technicians and civil servants can evaluate it. Automatic indexing tools can also be built, since the format is easily readable by both humans and machines.

publiccode.yml is mandatory for all public software developed in Italy, according to the national guidelines: this enables the Developers Italia crawler to build the national software catalog. The standard is designed to be interoperable internationally, thus the country-specific keys are separated by the core part and are defined in specific sections that each government can rule.

Details carried by a publiccode.yml file include:

  • title and description of the project or product (in one or more languages);

  • development state (e.g., concept, development, beta, stable, obsolete;

  • contacts of the entity who published the codebase;

  • contacts of the maintainer, if any, including the expire date of the maintenance contract;

  • information about the legal context for which the project or product was designed;

  • dependencies

and much more.

See also

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