The State of the Octoverse

Over the past year, 10M new developers joined the GitHub community, contributing to 44M+ repositories across every continent on earth. Behind the world’s code is a global and growing team of contributors, and 80% of them are contributing from outside the US.

This year, we’ve seen that software development is, more than ever, a community endeavor. The Octoverse is growing more interconnected as it becomes easier to find and build on work from others around the globe. And some of the top open source projects not only have thousands of contributors—they’re dependencies for millions of repositories.

How developers work is also changing fast, with new ways for people to work together across passion projects, open source software, and at companies everywhere more easily and securely than ever before. To celebrate 365 days of achievements, let’s look back at the code and communities built on GitHub this year.


Throughout our Octoverse report, you’ll see a few key terms and phrases come up. These provide a framework for how we collect and describe our data.

  • 2019: A year in this report is the last 365 days from the last Octoverse release, October 1, 2018 to Sept 30, 2019.
  • Developers: Developers are individual user accounts on GitHub, regardless of their activity.
  • Location: Country information for users is based on their last location, where known. For organizations, we take the best known location information either from the organization profile, or the most common country organization members are active in. We only use location information in aggregate form to look at things like trends in growth in a particular country or region. We don’t look at location information granularity finer than country level.
  • Open source projects: Open source projects are public repositories with an open source license.
  • Organizations: Organization accounts represent collections of people on GitHub. These can be paid or free, big or small, businesses or nonprofits.
  • Projects and repositories: We use projects and repositories interchangeably, although we understand that sometimes a larger project can span many repositories.

The expanding Octoverse

No matter what you’re building, you’re part of the largest developer community in the world, and it’s getting bigger—and more productive—every year.

  • 40m+ developers on GitHub, including 10M new users in 2019.
  • 44m+ repositories created in the last year—and 44% more developers created their first repository in 2019 than in 2018.
  • 87m+ pull requests merged in the last year—and 28% more developers opened their first pull request in 2019 than in 2018.
  • 20m+ issues closed in the last year. That’s a lot of decisions made, bugs fixed, and boxes checked.

At school

The next generation of developers is in school around the world, and this year, more than 760K are learning on GitHub.
  • 1.7m total students have learned to code on GitHub, 55% more than last year.
  • 31k total teachers have used GitHub in their courses to teach real-world developer workflows, 33% more than last year.
  • 761k active students learned and built with the GitHub Student Developer Pack.
  • 19.8k active schools used GitHub in their curricula across the globe in high schools, universities, bootcamps, and more.

At work

Our data shows an increasingly interconnected world, and developers at work are no exception. This year, we’ve seen that not only do companies use GitHub, they also contribute to open source and take part in the developer community. Almost 70% of Global Fortune 50 companies have made a contribution to open source in the last year.
  • 2.9m+ organizations brought people together in public and private repositories. GitHub Enterprise Cloud users alone worked in organizations from 70+ different countries around the world this year.
  • 35 of Global Fortune 50 companies have made contributions to open source in the last year, and 29 are building the software behind their businesses on GitHub Enterprise.

A global team

The world’s code is created by an increasingly global community. In fact, most GitHub users (nearly 80%) come from outside of the United States.

The world of open source

Open source is built by a global team of maintainers, developers, researchers, designers, writers, and more. On average, each open source project on GitHub welcomed contributors from 41 different countries and regions this year.

By total contributors outside the United States

Every year since 2014, we’ve seen more open source contributions from outside the United States.

2014201520162017201820190.5M1M1.5M2M2.5MOutside of the USUS

Top 20 regions outside the US by open source use (clones and forks)

After the United States, open source use picked up speed in China, India, and Germany this year. Developers in China forked and cloned 48% more projects than last year.

United Kingdom
Hong Kong (SAR)
Republic of Korea

What’s in a contribution?

In this report, we define contributions as any substantive action that generates content on GitHub, like creating an issue, opening a pull request, or commenting on an issue or pull request.

Where open source is growing

Open source is becoming even more global as developer communities grow across Asia and Africa. We’ve also seen contributions in places we haven’t before, from Anguilla to Antarctica.

By percentage growth of open source projects

Digging in, these regions powered open source growth around the world. Iranian developers had the second-highest growth in open source projects created in public repositories, and we're advocating for this growing community to have the broadest possible access to GitHub.

Nigeria – 59%
Iran – 44%
Kenya – 44%
Indonesia – 42%
Greece – 41%
Pakistan – 41%
Saudi Arabia – 41%
Republic of Korea – 40%
Tunisia – 40%
Morocco – 39%

By percentage growth of open source contributors

This year, contributor growth was fastest in Hong Kong (SAR), Singapore, and Japan.

Hong Kong (SAR) – 101%
Singapore – 77%
Japan – 60%
Republic of Korea – 46%
Netherlands – 37%
Switzerland – 36%
Indonesia – 35%
Taiwan – 34%
Turkey – 33%
Romania – 33%

Overall contributions

Contributions are ramping up—and not just in open source. Looking at public and private contributions, developer communities in Asia grew fast in 2019. Thirty-one percent of Asia’s total contributors call China home, but developers are contributing more across the continent.

Where contributors come from, by continent

Since 2014, an increasing number of contributors have come from outside the US. And Asia’s contributor community has surpassed ones in Europe and North America in annual growth.

Like open source, the overall community has become more globally distributed every year. This year, 80% of contributors to public and private repositories came from outside the US.

Asia Europe North America South America Africa Oceania 2019 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 4M 3.5M 3M 2.5M 2M 1.5M 1M 0.5M 0

Continents, ranked by adoption of free private repositories

We rang in 2019 by introducing free private repositories, allowing developers to work across as many private repositories as they need on job applications, side projects, or experiments that might not be ready for public eyes, yet. And so far, it’s made a global impact—even as far as Antarctica!

Since they launched in January 2019, we’ve seen 80% of free private repositories created outside of the US. Thirty-six percent were created in Asia, mostly by developers in India, China, and Japan.

Europe North America Asia Oceania Africa South America

Fastest growing regions on GitHub by percentage increase in contributors

Hong Kong (SAR) remained at the top of this list for the second year. And Japan has continued to climb.

Percentage increase in contributors to all repo types YOY with more than 20k contributors in 2018
  1. Hong Kong (SAR) 175%
  2. Singapore 111%
  3. Indonesia 90%
  4. Ireland 83%
  5. Japan 83%
  6. Turkey 77%
  7. Netherlands 73%
  8. Nigeria 73%
  9. Pakistan 71%
  10. Portugal 68%

Regional spotlight: Africa

Code and creativity are in no short supply across Africa. Developers here created 40% more open source repositories this year than last—a higher percentage growth than any other continent.

Fastest growing African countries on GitHub by contributor (more than 10K contributors in 2018)

Larger developer communities, like those in Morocco, Kenya, and Nigeria, saw up to 70% more contributors this year than last year.

  1. Morocco 65%
  2. Kenya 54%
  3. Nigeria 50%
  4. Egypt 49%
  5. South Africa 40%

Fastest growing African countries on GitHub by contributor (less than 10K contributors in 2018)

Africa’s smaller communities saw even faster growth in 2019, particularly in Mayotte and Guinea-Bissau.

  1. Mayotte 638%
  2. Guinea-Bissau 550%
  3. Seychelles 369%
  4. Chad 322%
  5. Niger 260%
  6. Sierra Leone 219%
  7. Rwanda 207%
  8. South Sudan 171%
  9. Congo (DRC) 169%
  10. Somalia 162%
Projects and dependencies

The interconnected community

Millions of developers make up an increasingly interconnected community building software the world relies on. And nowhere are we better able to see our connections than in our repository dependencies, where a single package can support millions of other projects.

  • 3.6m+ repositories depend on each of the top 50 open source projects, on average. Projects like rails/rails, facebook/jest, and axios/axios are used by millions of other repositories.
  • 203 package dependencies, on average, support every public and private repository with an enabled dependency graph. Open source projects have an average of 180 package dependencies. But this number can range from just a few packages to more than 1,000.
  • 350k+ people made 5M+ contributions to the top 1K projects this year (ranked by number of stars).
  • 1.3m+ first-time contributors joined the open source community this year and made their first-ever contribution towards an open source project.

Average package contributors and dependencies by package language

The top 50 open source packages in every language ecosystem (JavaScript, Python, Ruby, etc.) have an incredible number of dependent projects. For example, despite having an average of less than 40 direct contributors each, popular npm packages can be dependencies for millions of other repositories.

Top 50 packages (for each package manager)
Avg. dependent projects Avg. direct contributors
Maven packages
167k 99
pip packages
78k 204
npm packages
3.5m 35
NuGet packages
94k 109
RubyGems packages
737k 146

Top 10 open source packages with the most dependent projects

A closer look shows that more than four million repositories depend on lodash/lodash, expressjs/express, and visionmedia/debug, respectively.


Your packages, at home with your code

In May 2019 we launched GitHub Package Registry, making it easier to reuse any package as a dependency in a project by downloading it straight from GitHub. Learn more →

Project spotlight: TensorFlow

As one of the most popular projects on GitHub, TensorFlow can show us how open source projects connect the larger software community. The average number of community contributors to repositories that depend on Python packages is around 19K. And TensorFlow’s community is no exception. Thousands of people contribute to its dependencies, like Numpy, Pytest, and more.
  • 9.9k contributors have contributed to TensorFlow in the last year, creating pull requests, opening issues, and more.
  • 2.2k direct contributors have made commit contributions to TensorFlow in the last year.
  • 25k community contributors have contributed to TensorFlow dependencies in the last year.
  • 46k dependent repositories now rely on TensorFlow, building on the project’s network of dependencies.

Contributors in the TensorFlow dependency graph

The number of contributors to TensorFlow quickly expands when we credit the community of people contributing to its dependencies.

Direct contributors 2,238 3rd-degree community contributors 7,413 5th-degree community contributors 17,129 7th-degree community contributors 23,266 Community contributors 25,166

Community-powered security

Code reuse helps everyone build software faster than ever, but it also puts developers at risk of distributing security vulnerabilities from their dependencies. When a potential vulnerability is found, we see maintainers, developers, researchers, and an ecosystem of tools work together to keep code safe.
  • 7.6m+ security alerts remediated this year by developers, maintainers, and security researchers across the community.
  • 209k+ automated fixes merged into GitHub repositories via pull requests opened by Dependabot since our launch in May 2019.

Securing software, together

We all play a role in securing the world’s code: maintainers, researchers, and security teams. In 2019, GitHub welcomed Dependabot and Semmle, two teams bringing the community together to make software more secure for everyone. See how →

Top and trending projects

Open source projects are growing on GitHub, from one-line programs to projects with nearly 20,000 contributors. The open source repositories created this year make up 30% of all open source projects on GitHub.

Top open source projects by contributors

This year, popular open source projects are topping 10K contributors. Two have been on this list since 2016: microsoft/vscode and ansible/ansible. New in 2019 are flutter/flutter, firstcontributions/first-contributions, and home-assistant/home-assistant.

Number of contributors to open source projects
  1. microsoft/vscode 19.1k
  2. MicrosoftDocs/azure-docs 14k
  3. flutter/flutter 13k
  4. firstcontributions/first-contributions 11.6k
  5. tensorflow/tensorflow 9.9k
  6. facebook/react-native 9.1k
  7. kubernetes/kubernetes 6.9k
  8. DefinitelyTyped/DefinitelyTyped 6.9k
  9. ansible/ansible 6.8k
  10. home-assistant/home-assistant 6.3k

Fastest growing open source projects by contributors

Kits and frameworks for building apps and websites across languages and platforms are seeing contributor growth this year. Since its 1.0 release in December 2018, flutter/flutter has climbed to #2.

Change in contributions to open source projects
  1. aspnet/AspNetCore 346%
  2. flutter/flutter 279%
  3. MicrosoftDocs/vsts-docs 264%
  4. istio/istio 194%
  5. aws-amplify/amplify-js 188%
  6. helm/charts 184%
  7. ValveSoftware/Proton 182%
  8. gatsbyjs/gatsby 179%
  9. storybookjs/storybook 178%
  10. cypress-io/cypress 178%

New projects

These projects aren’t the fastest growing or highest grossing, but the community thought they were star-worthy.

  1. TrillCyborg/fullstack A full-stack boilerplate for you to learn some cool things or build your next app
  2. jesseduffield/lazydocker A simple terminal UI for both docker and docker-compose, written in Go with the gocui library
  3. practicalAI/practicalAI Empowering you to use machine learning to get valuable insights from data
  4. pomber/git-history A way to quickly browse the history of files in any Git repository

Contributions welcome

As of 2019, there’s one more way to contribute on GitHub: you can financially support the developers whose code you depend on through GitHub Sponsors. Learn more about sponsorships →

Top languages

In the last year, developers collaborated in more than 370 primary languages on GitHub.

Top languages over time

This year, C# and Shell climbed the list. And for the first time, Python outranked Java as the second most popular language on GitHub by repository contributors.

201920142015201620172018JavaScriptPythonJavaPHPC#C++TypeScriptShellCRubyObjective C

Fastest growing languages

With Flutter in our trending repositories, it’s not surprising that Dart gained contributors this year. We also saw trends toward statically typed languages focused on type safety and interoperability: the Rust, Kotlin, and TypeScript communities are still growing fast.

Change in programming language use, 2018-2019
  1. Dart 532%
  2. Rust 235%
  3. HCL 213%
  4. Kotlin 182%
  5. TypeScript 161%
  6. PowerShell 154%
  7. Apex 154%
  8. Python 151%
  9. Assembly 149%
  10. Go 147%

Industry spotlight: data science

Although GitHub has traditionally been home to software developers, the world’s code is evolving. Behind Python’s growth is a speedily-expanding community of data science professionals and hobbyists—and the tools and frameworks they use every day. These include the many core data science packages powered by Python that are both lowering the barriers to data science work and proving foundational to projects in academia and companies alike.

Beyond Python, repositories with topics like “deep learning”, “natural language processing”, and “machine learning” have become more popular over the years with growing communities focused on data science. Among the most popular (based on star counts) public repositories labelled with the topic, over half of them are built on numpy, and many of them depend on scipy, scikit-learn, and TensorFlow. We’ve also seen non-code contributions from the data science field, including academic papers.

Growth of Jupyter Notebooks, 2016-2019

How else can we tell data science is growing on GitHub? The use of Jupyter Notebooks (by number of repositories with Jupyter as their primary language) has seen more than 100% growth year-over-year for the last three years.


Growth of natural language processing repositories, 2016-2019

Natural language processing (NLP) is also picking up steam on GitHub, as packages like NTLK lower the barrier to entry for NLP work.


All together now. Software moves fast, as we can see from this year’s global trends, popular projects, and top programming languages. A language with 30 years of history is finding fresh applications, new frameworks are gaining thousands of contributors, and people are committing everything, from Python packages to academic papers, from around the world. And with more ways to manage, integrate, and support new workflows—through apps, GitHub Actions, and more—we can't wait to see how building software evolves next.

Thank you to the millions of people who built together in 2019, for work or for fun, to make software better—more accessible, more secure, and more connected than ever before. You’re creating the code, communities, tools, and technologies that will move our world forward for years to come.