M.Sc. Hanna Mäenpää defends her doctoral thesis Organizing and Managing Contributor Involvement in Hybrid Open Source Software Development Communities on Tuesday the 23rd of June 2020 at 12 o'clock in the University of Helsinki Metsätalo building, Auditorium 2 (Unioninkatu 40, 2nd floor). Her opponent is Professor Nina Helander (University of Tampere) and custos Professor Tomi Männistö (University of Helsinki). The defence will be held in Finnish. It is possible to follow the defence as a live stream at https://helsinki.zoom.us/j/67883961164?pwd=cXVJdkdYMXBFdkhBQlNObnlONkptZz09.
The thesis of Hanna Mäenpää is a part of research done in the Department of Computer Science and in the Empirical Software Engineering research group at the University of Helsinki. Her supervisors have been Professors Tommi Mikkonen and Tomi Männistö (University of Helsinki).
Organizing and Managing Contributor Involvement in Hybrid Open Source Software Development Communities
Open Source Software (OSS) products have become an essential component in the value-creation mechanisms of commercial software development. Therefore, Open Source Software development communities have transformed into hybrid environments, where strong professionalism, commercial direction, and the original common-good ethos intertwine. For organizations that hope to create new, or engage with existing OSS development communities, it is essential to understand this balance to create a successful collaboration.
This thesis addresses the many opportunities and pitfalls of organizing and managing OSS-development model-based communities. It presents mixed-method case studies of large, established, and commercially influenced OSS development projects, that are orchestrated by a central organization. This evidence describes how differently the organization and governance of hybrid communities can be configured. It illustrates how a community's participatory options and knowledge flows can be used to leverage its openness. Management challenges of these complex environments are described, and practitioner-proven means for alleviating them are presented.
Mäenpää finds that the hybrid OSS developer community can be organized as an environment for serious, goal-oriented work, and as an environment for experience-based learning. She highlights how important it is to consider what value each in- and outflow of knowledge brings to both the orchestrator, and to the community's contributors. Similarly important is to determine the extent to which orchestrators should interact with the community's processes, and by what means they could support the community's contributors in achieving their goals. This contribution aims at inspiring new Open Innovation strategies for software producing organizations, that want to either engage with existing or create new, hybrid, OSS development model-based communities.
Availability of the dissertation
An electronic version of the doctoral dissertation is available on the e-thesis site of the University of Helsinki at http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-951-51-6193-2.
Printed copies will be available on request from Hanna Mäenpää: email@example.com.