Open Source Software
This has been a long-standing research interest (e.g. Feller & Fitzgerald 2000 (a Best Paper award winner), Feller & Fitzgerald 2001; Feller & Fitzgerald 2002). Given the paradoxical nature of OSS (successful global software development for free), much research tended to focus inward on the OSS phenomenon, studying motivation and inward on the phenomenon, studying the motivations of individual developers to contribute to OSS projects, or the characteristics of specific OSS products and projects. In contrast, my research has sought to look outward to investigate the implications of the OSS phenomenon. This has resulted in a number of research sub-topics, including:
- Organizational adoption of OSS – successes and failures, lessons learned (e.g. Fitzgerald & Kenny 2004; Fitzgerald 2009; Fitzgerald et al 2011)
- OSS 2.0 – the transformation of OSS into a commercial hybrid form (Fitzgerald 2006)
- Opensourcing – whereby proprietary software companies release an OSS version of what was hitherto proprietary software and seek to establish an OSS community to support. This requires collaboration and co-opetition between proprietary companies and OSS communities and presents difficult challenges in that the company and the community (often comprised of SMEs) are typically competitors in the particular domain (Agerfalk and Fitzgerald 2008).
- Open Source Service Networks (OSSNs) – an emergent form of collaborative network among SMEs organised on OSS principles that can compete successfully against the major traditional companies. The governance of OSSNs differs from the traditional model in that the network must ‘police’ itself in the absence of traditional sanctions available as part of the traditional organizational structure (Feller et al 2008)
- How OSS is influenced by software engineering practices, and what lessons does OSS provide for software engineering (Fitzgerald 2011)
- Inner Source, which refers to the adoption of OSS development practices and principles within an organization for in-house software development (Stol et al 2011)
- Time-based release managment for OSS – an alternative to traditional commercial release management strategies which are often based on marketing new functionality. In contrast, the predicatability of time-based release management can offer several quality and sustainability advantages for OSS projects (Michlmayr & Fitzgerald 2013)
Feller, J. & Fitzgerald, B. (2000) A Framework Analysis of the Open Source Software Development Paradigm, in W. Orlikowski et al (Eds) Proc. of 21st International Conference on Information Systems, (ICIS2000), Australia, 2000. |
(This paper won the ICIS Best Conference Theme Paper award).
Feller, J. and Fitzgerald, B. (2002) Understanding Open Source Software Development, Addison-Wesley; UK (Serialised in Linux Business Week in 2002) | Link
Feller, J, Finnegan, P, Fitzgerald, B and Hayes, J (2008) From peer production to productization: a study of socially-enabled business exchanges in open source service networks, Information Systems Research, Vol 19, No. 4, pp.474-493. |
Fitzgerald, B (2009) Open source software implementation: anatomy of success and failure, International Journal of Open Source Software Processes, Vol 1, No 1, pp. 1-19. (lead paper in inaugural issue) |
Fitzgerald, B, Kesan, J, Russo, B, Shaikh, M and Succi, G (2011) Adopting Open Source Software: A Practical Guideline, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA. | Google Scholar
Stol K.J, Ali-Babar M, Avgeriou P, Fitzgerald B (2011) A comparative study of challenges in integrating Open Source Software and Inner Source Software, Inform. Softw. Technol. (2011), doi:10.1016/j.infsof.2011.06.007. |