Additional detail may be found on the HICSS primary web site:


This mini-track covers all aspects of the Open Movement phenomena, such as:

The mini-track continues seven earlier HICSS mini-tracks addressing the trend towards the adoption of open strategies for peer production, collaboration and knowledge creation. This year its scope includes the software technology track's interest in new and emerging technical aspects of open systems. The mini-track solicits interdisciplinary research about these topics, both in the software development field, and addressing the challenging questions raised by these open movements for many different research fields.

The mini-track presents work in a variety of open phenomena, each with distinctive features and issues: FLOSS, Open Content, Open Access Publishing and Open Communities. Firstly, FLOSS is a broad term proposed for naming software released under some kind of free or open source software license. Currently, development and adoption of FLOSS projects spans a wide range of applications and critical infrastructure. Secondly, Open Content refers to published content (e.g., articles, engineering designs, pictures or any other type of multimedia) released under some form of open license, allowing the content to be modified and redistributed. Examples of Open Contents are Wikipedia and MIT’s Open Courseware. These principles have also been extended to fields such as scientific collaboratories. Thirdly, Open Access Publishing means publishing of works in a way that allows access to interested users without financial or other barriers. Examples include a variety of Open Access journals as well as a variety of institutional or topical paper repositories. Finally, around all types of projects we often find an active and even devoted community of developers, users, leaders, authors and readers, exhibiting complex interactions with each other. Some of the aforementioned projects comprise both types of Open Communities (developing FLOSS and also open content, e.g., Wikipedia and Creative Commons). We also find other Open Communities of users in successful large projects, supporting interactions among users, and also with open multimedia contents provided by users themselves, e.g., YouTube, MySpace,, Diggit, Twitter and Facebook.

Researchers from a variety of disciplines have turned their attention to the phenomenon of FLOSS, Open Content, Open Access Publishing and Open Communities, frequently presenting them as an intriguing new form of Internet-supported work and collaboration. However, open collaboration and peer production create new challenges, as team members typically work in a distributed environment, in which contributors can come from many independent organizations, many working as volunteers rather than employees. The empirical literature on software engineering, programmers and the social and technical aspects of software development suggests that such teams would face insurmountable difficulties in developing quality code or coherent information collections, yet in fact some of these teams have been remarkably successful. Study of these open projects may thus provide guidance for improving the performance of these teams and of distributed collaborations more generally.

As well, open development is an important phenomenon deserving of study in its own right. Millions of users depend on systems such as Linux and the Internet relies extensively on FLOSS tools, Furthermore, there exists a clear trend in Public Administrations all over the world (with some remarkable cases like Australia, The Netherlands and Spain) towards the promotion and widespread adoption of FLOSS technologies. But as Scacchi notes, “little is known about how people in these communities coordinate software development across different settings, or about what software processes, work practices, and organizational contexts are necessary to their success”. Wikipedia has quickly become an extensive and widely-used if sometimes controversial resource. Some studies, like the one presented by Giles in Nature suggest that, despite the apparent heterogeneity of the group of authors behind Wikipedia, the accuracy of some of its articles could rival with other traditional encyclopedic projects like Encyclopedia Britannica, but we lack a deep understanding of the conditions of its production that lead to such outcomes.

This mini-track will provide a place for research and conceptual work to address a variety of questions, such as examining the implications of open content from technical, economic and policy perspectives. As well, the mini-track welcomes studies of the deployment of FLOSS and OC studies, exploring the motivations of individuals to contribute to projects. Studies of the structure and function of open teams and communities are also in the scope of this mini-track, including analysis of the social networks created by those communities and their evolution over time. In addition to studies of specific communities, we seek papers that draw connections across different settings to pose more general questions and explanations or to explore the design and analysis of novel systems.

We have chosen these specific focuses because recent workshops and conferences addressing the FLOSS phenomenon, including HICSS 43, have identified the need for further research on the process of software engineering in FLOSS, the need to compare FLOSS to other software engineering paradigms and models, and also the need to find similarities and differences between FLOSS development and other kinds of open development . Other commentators have suggested the need to study the work practices and social and organizational elements of open projects, as a model for distributed work. In the same way, HICSS has seen an increase of papers on FLOSS, OC, OA and OC Communities scattered across a variety of tracks. There is much intersection between studies of OC development, motivations and impact and those of FLOSS development. Combining these overlapping areas will provide for a great interdisciplinary discussion of the various forms of Open Movements.

Possible topics for this mini-track include:




[Optional] From now until June 1

Prepare Abstracts. Then, contact minitrack chairs for guidance and indication of appropriate content.


Authors submit full papers by this date, following the author instructions ( All papers will be submitted in double column publication format and limited to 10 pages including diagrams and references. HICSS papers undergo a double-blind review (June15 - August15).


Acceptance notices are sent to authors. At this time, at least one author of an accepted paper should begin visa, fiscal and travel arrangements to attend the conference to present the paper.


Manuscripts that have been “conditionally accepted” (A-M Accepted with Mandatory Changes) must be re-submitted by the authors to the Peer Review Site. 


Authors submit final version of papers following submission instructions posted on the HICSS web site. At least one author of each paper must register by this date with specific plans to attend the conference.


Papers without at least one registered author will be pulled from the publication process; authors will be notified.





For the latest information, visit the HICSS web site at: