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An Analysis of the Dynamics of the Legitimation Processes of Innovations in Open Source Software:

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posted on 08.06.2021, 14:49 authored by Soran Nouri
Within the Open Source Software (OSS) literature, there is a lack of studies addressing the legitimation processes of innovations that are born in OSS. This study sets out to analyze the legitimation processes of innovations within the deliberations of the Drupal project. The data set constitutes 52 rational deliberation cases discussing innovations that were proposed by members of the community. Habermas’s Ideal Speech Situations (ISS) is used as the framework to view Drupal’s rational deliberations from; in fact within the 52 cases that are examined in this thesis, there were no violations to the guidelines of the ISS in the deliberations. The Communicative Action Theory, Influence Tactics theory and the theory of Validity Claims are aspects of the framework that is used to code and analyze the conversations. These aspects allow for an effective conceptualization of the dynamics of the Drupal deliberations. This thesis was able to find that legitimation processes of innovations in open source software were influenced by the type, complexity and implications of the innovations on the rest of the community. Also, bug fixes, complex innovations and innovations that have implications on the rest of the software will result in a long (in terms of number of comments) legitimation process. Also, it is empirically backed in this study that in open deliberations that aim at achieving mutual understanding towards a common goal, the communicative action type and the rational persuasion influence tactic are the most common methods for innovators to interact with the community.





Master of Management Science


MBA in Management of Technology and Innovation

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type