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Monitoring Open Software Development

How to monitor Open Source software development is the question of this article by Clemens.
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© This work by Clemens Blümel is licensed under CC BY 4.0.

Open Source software development is also relevant for innovation which can not be covered by relying, for instance, on patents.

Open Source software development is largely enabled by large digital infrastructures allowing for intense collaboration (Begel, Bosch, & Storey, 2013). The largest provider of such a service is GitHub, offering a wide range of functions that can be employed by its users for collaboration and interaction.

Novel solutions emerge from these platforms and benefit from the knowledge of the crowd. Because of their large user base, novel solutions can emerge in a very short time frame. Also, users can learn from each other and can acquire competencies by following other, more experienced researchers or developers (Dabbish, Stuart, Tsay, & Herbsleb, 2012).

Since these digital platforms provide process generated data emerging from platform afforded user interaction, they can provide valuable information of how invention processes in this realm occur. They allow for visible knowledge production and inventive activity that is not reflected by traditional output indicators.

Of course, retrieving information from these sources is also risky and problematic. User entries are not always curated and there are also coverage problems most of which are not solved. Yet, more research is needed in order to scrutinize to what extent these data sources and process generated data can be used and integrated into larger indicator and monitoring reports of science and innovation activities.

© This work by Clemens Blümel is licensed under CC BY 4.0.
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Openness in Science and Innovation

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