There is a rich landscape of organizations building and sharing custom software between government agencies, some dating back decades, and some mere months old. Among the younger organizations, one of the most interesting is the United Kingdom’s LocalGov Drupal.
LocalGov Drupal went from an idea to a 16-member organization in less than three years, combining outsourced software development with contributions by member governments. They’ve worked in the open the whole time, iteratively shipping functioning software for their members’ benefit. And all of this has been funded by a compelling national government initiative created for exactly this sort of work. It all adds up to a good collection of best practices all present in a single project, with an openly available record of its creation.
This report provides an overview of LocalGov Drupal, recounts the history of the project, highlights the notable methods employed by the project team, and distills all of this into lessons that other cooperatives and funders can draw from.