Intrinsic Motivation versus Signaling in Open Source Software Development
AbstractThis papers sheds light on the puzzling fact that even though open source software (OSS) is a public good, it is developed for free by highly qualified, young, motivated individuals, and evolves at a rapid pace. We show that when OSS development is understood as the private provision of a public good, these features emerge quite naturally. We adapt a dynamic private-provision-of-public-goods model to reflect key aspects of the OSS phenomenon. Apart from extrinsic motives (namely signaling), the present model also contains intrinsic motives of OSS programmers, such as play value or homo ludens payoff, userprogrammers’ and gift culture benefits. Such intrinsic motives feature extensively in the wider OSS literature and contribute new insights to the economic analysis
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 06-7.
Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: 01 Sep 2006
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: The Aarhus School of Business, Prismet, Silkeborgvej 2, DK 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
Phone: +45 89 486396
Fax: +45 8615 5175
Web page: http://www.asb.dk/departments/nat.aspx
More information through EDIRC
open source software; public goods; homo ludens; war of attrition;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
- L31 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Nonprofit Institutions; NGOs
- L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-04-21 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2007-04-21 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-INO-2007-04-21 (Innovation)
- NEP-PBE-2007-04-21 (Public Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bilodeau, Marc & Slivinski, Al, 1996.
"Toilet cleaning and department chairing: Volunteering a public service,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 299-308, February.
- Marc Bilodeau & Al Slivinski, . "Toilet Cleaning and Department Chairing: Volunteering a Public service," Public Economics 9405001, EconWPA.
- Bilodeau, M. & Slivinsky, A., 1994. "Toilet Cleaning and Department Chairing: Volunteering a public service," Cahiers de recherche 94-01, Departement d'Economique de la Faculte d'administration à l'Universite de Sherbrooke.
- Justin Pappas Johnson, 2002. "Open Source Software: Private Provision of a Public Good," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(4), pages 637-662, December.
- Hendricks, Ken & Weiss, Andrew & Wilson, Charles A, 1988.
"The War of Attrition in Continuous Time with Complete Information,"
International Economic Review,
Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(4), pages 663-80, November.
- Hendricks, Kenneth & Weiss, Andrew & Wilson, Charles, 1987. "The War of Attrition in Continuous Time with Complete Information," Working Papers 87-03, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
- Lerner, Josh & Tirole, Jean, 2003.
"The Scope of Open Source Licensing,"
IDEI Working Papers
219, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- Jürgen Bitzer & Philipp J. H. Schröder, 2002.
"Bug-Fixing and Code-Writing: The Private Provision of Open Source Software,"
Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin
296, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Bitzer, Jurgen & Schroder, Philipp J.H., 2005. "Bug-fixing and code-writing: The private provision of open source software," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 389-406, July.
- Bliss, Christopher & Nalebuff, Barry, 1984. "Dragon-slaying and ballroom dancing: The private supply of a public good," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1-2), pages 1-12, November.
- Lerner, Josh & Tirole, Jean, 2002. "Some Simple Economics of Open," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 197-234, June.
- David P. Myatt & Chris Wallace, 2002. "Equilibrium Selection and Public Good Provision," Economics Series Working Papers 103, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Bitzer, Jurgen, 2004. "Commercial versus open source software: the role of product heterogeneity in competition," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 369-381, December.
- Lindenberg, Siegwart, 2001. "Intrinsic Motivation in a New Light," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(2-3), pages 317-42.
- Hertel, Guido & Niedner, Sven & Herrmann, Stefanie, 2003. "Motivation of software developers in Open Source projects: an Internet-based survey of contributors to the Linux kernel," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1159-1177, July.
- Jürgen Bitzer & Philipp J.H. Schröder, 2005. "The Impact of Entry and Competition by Open Source Software on Innovation Activity," Industrial Organization 0512001, EconWPA.
- Josh Lerner & Parag A. Pathak & Jean Tirole, 2006. "The Dynamics of Open-Source Contributors," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 114-118, May.
- Jürgen Bitzer & Wolfram Schrettl & Philipp J.H. Schröder, 2005.
"Intrinsic Motivation in Open Source Software Development,"
Development and Comp Systems
- Bitzer, Jurgen & Schrettl, Wolfram & Schroder, Philipp J.H., 2007. "Intrinsic motivation in open source software development," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 160-169, March.
- Bitzer, Jürgen & Schrettl, Wolfram & Schröder, Philipp J. H., 2004. "Intrinsic motivation in open source software development," Discussion Papers 2004/19, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Helle Vinbaek Stenholt).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.