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The Promise of Research on Open Source Software

Author

Listed:
  • Georg von Krogh

    () (Department of Management, Technology, and Economics, ETH Zurich, Kreuzplatz 5, 8000 Zürich, Switzerland)

  • Eric von Hippel

    () (Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 50 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139)

Abstract

Breaking with many established assumptions about how innovation ought to work, open source software projects offer eye-opening examples of novel innovation practices for students and practitioners in many fields. In this article we briefly review existing research on the open source phenomenon and discuss the utility of open source software research findings for many other fields. We categorize the research into three areas: motivations of open source software contributors; governance, organization, and the process of innovation in open source software projects; and competitive dynamics enforced by open source software. We introduce the articles in this special issue of Management Science on open source software, and show how each contributes insights to one or more of these areas.

Suggested Citation

  • Georg von Krogh & Eric von Hippel, 2006. "The Promise of Research on Open Source Software," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(7), pages 975-983, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:52:y:2006:i:7:p:975-983
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.1060.0560
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Josh Lerner, 2005. "The Scope of Open Source Licensing," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(1), pages 20-56, April.
    2. Franke, Nikolaus & Hippel, Eric von, 2003. "Satisfying heterogeneous user needs via innovation toolkits: the case of Apache security software," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1199-1215, July.
    3. Bruce Kogut & Anca Metiu, 2001. "Open-Source Software Development and Distributed Innovation," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 248-264, Summer.
    4. West, Joel, 2003. "How open is open enough?: Melding proprietary and open source platform strategies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1259-1285, July.
    5. Mustonen, Mikko, 2003. "Copyleft--the economics of Linux and other open source software," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 99-121, March.
    6. William C. Merrill & Norman Schneider, 1966. "Government Firms in Oligopoly Industries: A Short-Run Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(3), pages 400-412.
    7. 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.
    8. von Krogh, Georg & Spaeth, Sebastian & Lakhani, Karim R., 2003. "Community, joining, and specialization in open source software innovation: a case study," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1217-1241, July.
    9. Dam, Kenneth W, 1995. "Some Economic Considerations in the Intellectual Property Protection of Software," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(2), pages 321-377, June.
    10. Eric von Hippel, 1998. "Economics of Product Development by Users: The Impact of "Sticky" Local Information," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(5), pages 629-644, May.
    11. Egon Franck & Carola Jungwirth, 2002. "Reconciling investors and donators - The governance structure of open source," Working Papers 0008, University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU).
    12. Zeitlyn, David, 2003. "Gift economies in the development of open source software: anthropological reflections," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1287-1291, July.
    13. Harhoff, Dietmar & Henkel, Joachim & von Hippel, Eric, 2003. "Profiting from voluntary information spillovers: how users benefit by freely revealing their innovations," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(10), pages 1753-1769, December.
    14. Dahlander, Linus & Magnusson, Mats G., 2005. "Relationships between open source software companies and communities: Observations from Nordic firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 481-493, May.
    15. Mikko Mustonen, 2005. "When Does a Firm Support Substitute Open Source Programming?," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(1), pages 121-139, March.
    16. Bonaccorsi, Andrea & Rossi, Cristina, 2003. "Why Open Source software can succeed," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1243-1258, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Alexy, Oliver & Reitzig, Markus, 2013. "Private–collective innovation, competition, and firms’ counterintuitive appropriation strategies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 895-913.
    2. Boris van Leeuwen & Theo Offerman & Arthur Schram, 2013. "Superstars need Social Benefits: An Experiment on Network Formation," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-112/I, Tinbergen Institute.
    3. repec:eee:eecrev:v:94:y:2017:i:c:p:221-239 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Offerman, Theo & Schram, Arthur & Van Leeuwen, Boris, 2014. "Competition for status creates superstars: An experiment on public good provision and network formation," IAST Working Papers 14-16, Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST).
    5. Girish Mallapragada & Rajdeep Grewal & Gary Lilien, 2012. "User-Generated Open Source Products: Founder's Social Capital and Time to Product Release," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 31(3), pages 474-492, May.
    6. Sanandaji, Tino & Lakomaa, Erik, 2016. "Care, Commons and Entrepreneurship," SSE Working Paper Series in Economic History 2016:2, Stockholm School of Economics.
    7. Stam, Wouter, 2009. "When does community participation enhance the performance of open source software companies?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 1288-1299, October.
    8. Tuba Bakici & Esteve Almirall & Jonathan Wareham, 2011. "Motives for Participation in On-Line Open Innovation Platforms," DRUID Working Papers 11-14, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    9. Ramon Casadesus-Masanell & Gastón Llanes, 2011. "Mixed Source," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(7), pages 1212-1230, July.
    10. Llanes, Gastón & de Elejalde, Ramiro, 2013. "Industry equilibrium with open-source and proprietary firms," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 36-49.
    11. Fershtman, Chaim & Gandal, Neil, 2011. "A Brief Survey of the Economics of Open Source Software," CEPR Discussion Papers 8434, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    12. Chandra, Yanto & Coviello, Nicole, 2010. "Broadening the concept of international entrepreneurship: 'Consumers as International Entrepreneurs'," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 228-236, July.
    13. Stefano Colombo & Luca Grilli & Cristina Rossi-Lamastra, 2014. "Network Externalities, Incumbent’s Competitive Advantage and the Degree of Openness of Software Start-Ups," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 44(2), pages 175-200, August.
    14. Jana Gallus, 2016. "Fostering Voluntary Contributions to a Public Good: A Large-Scale Natural Field Experiment at Wikipedia," Natural Field Experiments 00552, The Field Experiments Website.
    15. Krishnamurthy, Sandeep & Ou, Shaosong & Tripathi, Arvind K., 2014. "Acceptance of monetary rewards in open source software development," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(4), pages 632-644.
    16. Raasch, Christina & Lee, Viktor & Spaeth, Sebastian & Herstatt, Cornelius, 2013. "The rise and fall of interdisciplinary research: The case of open source innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(5), pages 1138-1151.
    17. Lettl, Christopher & Rost, Katja & von Wartburg, Iwan, 2009. "Why are some independent inventors 'heroes' and others 'hobbyists'? The moderating role of technological diversity and specialization," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 243-254, March.
    18. Stefan Haefliger & Georg von Krogh & Sebastian Spaeth, 2008. "Code Reuse in Open Source Software," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 54(1), pages 180-193, January.
    19. repec:eee:respol:v:46:y:2017:i:5:p:970-983 is not listed on IDEAS

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