Nextcloud founder earns European Free Software Award

Nextcloud wins the European SFS award

Earlier today, our founder Frank Karlitschek accepted the honorary SFS Award for ongoing contribution to the mission of Free Software. The award is a highlight of the 20th annual SFSCON dedicated to promotion and implementation of FOSS in Europe and beyond. Image source: NOI Techpark

A big day for the Nextcloud community

European SFS Award is a big part of the South Tyrol Free Software Conference (SFSCON), an event centered around promotion and implementation of the Free Software culture.

Each year, the award is presented to an individual who, according to the SFS community, has made a meaningful impact in advancing the principles and adoption of free software in their respective communities and in the broader software industry.

In the 2023 edition, Frank Karlitschek earns the honor, dedicating the award to everyone participating in the Nextcloud project.

I accept this award in the name of Nextcloud, our dynamic and dedicated community, and a hardworking team of bright individuals who made it happen. Today, we all win!

Frank Karlitschek
Founder and CEO of Nextcloud
Frank Karlitschek

In previous years, the European SFS Award has been given to the pioneers of Free Software representing a wide array of backgrounds including software engineering and research, open source project coordination, and free software advocacy. To the Nextcloud community, this is a milestone that recognizes our collective impact on the FOSS industry and the European IT as a whole.

“He is not only a gifted technologist, but also a champion of the idea of digital freedom as a universal right. With his work he lives the ideals of transparency, privacy, and individual control over digital information, but he also laid the foundation for a diverse and engaged community.”

Rafael Barbieri, LUGBZ member, quoted in the FSFE press release
European SFS Award winner: Frank Karlitschek, founder of Nextcloud
Image source: NOI Techpark


SFSCON is one of Europe’s most established annual events focused on Free Software that has a history dating back to 2004. The event’s mission is the promotion of FOSS in digital infrastructures, as a means of creating the environment for better innovation and healthy competition. The event takes place in person in South Tirol, Italy.

The conference brings together everyone involved: education and research organizations, software developers, Free Software foundations, and decision makers of all levels. Its program covers dedicated tracks for development, AI, cybersecurity, community activities, lawmaking, and more.

At SFSCON 2023, Frank takes the spotlight among the Main Track talks, presenting “What the AI revolution means for Open Source, Open Tech and Open Societies” and becoming a part of the Software Freedom” roundtable. Björn Schließle, computer scientist and Nextcloud’s co-founder, contributes to the Artificial Intelligence Track under the “Nextcloud – did you know?” title.

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