IBM is moving to grant royalty-free access to some of its software patent portfolio to be uses in development of open software standards for education and healthcare applications, Big Blue said Monday.

It’s the second time this year IBM has made such a move on its patent holdings. IBM is also providing access for some Linux-based application development.

The healthcare and education initiative will focus on standards for web services, electronic forms and open document formats.

“Healthcare remains one of the greatest challenges for our society and our economy worldwide. Many industries are transforming, using open software standards to create a powerful platform for innovation and industry growth,” said Neil de Crescenzo, vice president of Global Healthcare for IBM Business Consulting Services, in a statement. “Our initiative can help do the same for the worldwide healthcare industry.”

Added Sean Rush, general manager of IBM Global Education Industry: “Fueling innovation and creating a highly skilled workforce requires greater collaboration between students, administrators, industry, school systems and institutions of higher education. IBM is eager to contribute to this collaboration through open standards and industry best practices that drive down costs and provide an environment of learning and advancement. We’re calling on others to join us in promoting the development and adoption of truly open software standards.”

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