|Investigating recognition-based performance in an open content community: a social capital perspective|
|Authors:||Chitu Okoli, Wonseok Oh|
|Citation:||Information & Management 44 (3): 240-252. 2007.|
|Publication type:||Journal article|
|Google Scholar cites:||Citations|
|Added by Wikilit team:||Added on initial load|
|Article:||Google Scholar BASE PubMed|
|Other scholarly wikis:||AcaWiki Brede Wiki WikiPapers|
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As the open source movement grows, it becomes important to understand the dynamics that affect the motivation of participants who contribute their time freely to such projects. One important motivation that has been identified is the desire for formal recognition in the open source community. We investigated the impact of social capital in participants' social networks on their recognition-based performance; i.e., the formal status they are accorded in the community. We used a sample of 465 active participants in the Wikipedia open content encyclopedia community to investigate the effects of two types of social capital and found that network closure, measured by direct and indirect ties, had a significant positive effect on increasing participants' recognition-based performance. Structural holes had mixed effects on participants' status, but were generally a source of social capital.
"Our study therefore investigated how social capital ,  J. Coleman, Social capital in the creation of human capital, American Journal of Sociology 94 (1988) (S95–S121).,  and  in the community influenced an OSS participant's recognition-based performance. Because open source communities operate under social structures , social capital theory provided a valuable perspective for understanding how participants leveraged social resources to achieve their performance objectives. More specifically, we asked: Do the virtual connections through which open content participants operate influence their performance?
We addressed this question by examining the activities of Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org, a general encyclopedia), currently the largest open source content community, because its members span every aspect of the human demography and anyone with Internet access may access and contribute to it ,  and ."
|Topics:||Contributor motivation, Policies and governance|
|Theories:||"The principle idea of social capital theory is simple and straightforward: social relationships, norms, and values  attached to social capital determine the performance of individuals, groups and organizations who are part of a socially or economically connected network  P.C.B. Lee, Social support and leaving intention among computer professionals, Information & Management 41 (2004) (3), p. 323. Article"|
|Research design:||Statistical analysis|
|Data source:||Wikipedia pages|
|Collected data time dimension:||Longitudinal|
|Unit of analysis:||Edit, User|
|Wikipedia data extraction:||Dump|
|Wikipedia page type:||Article, Article:talk, User, User:talk|
"Despite much interest in the development of open source software, little research has been performed in this area. In particular, due to the difficulty of data collection, few empirical studies have been attempted. Based on the perspective of social capital, we examined empirically the extent to which network closures and structural holes in the network influenced participants’ performance. Our approach may help address one issue that is often cited as a key challenge to open source community stakeholders: how to keep the interest of participants and motivate them to continue to contribute. Economic incentives might dilute the original spirit over which OSS communities are established and may have negative consequences. One alternative for maintaining members’ interests is to construct or adjust the network structure to attract participants and improve its social capital resources. Furthermore, OSS leaders should fine-tune or reconfigure their network to be efficient with equilibrium between the network closures and structural"
""Economic incentives might dilute the original spirit over which OSS communities are established and may have negative consequences. One alternative for maintaining members’ interests is to construct or adjust the network structure to attract participants and improve its social capital resources.""