Motivations for Open Source Project Entrance and Continued Participation

Detta är en Magister-uppsats från Lunds universitet/Institutionen för informatik

Sammanfattning: A great number of studies have explored the motivations that drive software developers to devote their time and efforts to contribute to Open Source Software Development (OSSD) projects. Previous studies have stated that both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations are important, however there have been different opinions regarding their relative value. This study further researches OSSD motivations and examines (1) what types of motivations that attract software developers to OSSD projects, (2) what types of motivations that encourage software developers to continue participating in OSSD projects, and (3) how these types of motivations relate to each other in terms of whether some motivations encourage software developers to join and continue to participate in OSSD projects to a higher extent than others, and if the motivations can coexist or crowd out each other. In order to learn more about these questions a web survey measuring different types of motivations (intrinsic, extrinsic, internalized extrinsic) was distributed among developers that contribute to the world's nine largest OSSD projects. Results clearly present similar patterns indicating that OSS developers are highly intrinsically motivated, less internalized extrinsically motivated, and even lesser extrinsically motivated to join as well as to continue participating in OSSD projects. This provides new insights regarding how to treat motivations throughout all phases of OSSD projects. The similarities further strengthen the perception that intrinsic motivations should be prioritized, and thus, since OSS developers are intrinsic by nature, it is important to fulfill developers' intrinsic needs during all phases in OSSD projects. Finally, it can be stated that different types of motivations cannot coexist, intrinsic motivations appear to crowd out extrinsic motivations.

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