To Contribute or Not to Contribute, an Exploratory Study on the Determinants for Contributing in OSS Projects
23 Pages Posted: 13 Jul 2009 Last revised: 30 Oct 2009
Date Written: July 1, 2009
This empirical study explores what the determinants for contributing are among individuals who belong to projects created for the development of Open Source Software. Our goal is to verify if current theoretical conjectures actually explain differences in individual contribution behaviour, and to explore other plausible explanations. Among the motivators for contributing, we report the search for recognition, the complementarities with own work, and the skills or capacities for contributing. The presence of many team members discourages contribution, while the number of outsider contributors increase participation.
Keywords: Cooperation, Public Goods, Free-riding, Altruism, Collectives, Networks, Open Source Products, Software Industry.
JEL Classification: H41, H42, D64, L14, L17, L86, P32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation