An exploration of the diffusion dynamics of Open Source Software (OSS): An Agent-Based Computational Economics (ACE) approach
Despite the rising popularity of Open Source Software (OSS), there is limited understanding of the factors that affect the diffusion of OSS at the organizational level. Review of the literature suggests that previous empirical and analytical studies on this subject matter though valuable in their own respect, either did not address the full spectrum of critical factors in one model or did not investigate the impact of critical factors in enough detail leaving some gaps in the literature. In an effort to bridge these gaps, this dissertation develops a model to (a) jointly investigate the effect of critical variables other than price on the diffusion dynamics of OSS, (b) investigate the effects of social networks or inter-organizational relationships on the diffusion dynamics of OSS, (c) propose a new software price discounting scheme and compare its effectiveness against traditional software price discounting schemes on the diffusion dynamics of OSS. An Agent-Based Computational Economics (ACE) approach is adopted to develop a comprehensive simulation model to investigate the aforementioned research problems. Although, desktop operating system software is used as an exemplar to investigate the diffusion of its open source and proprietary alternatives, the framework proposed in the dissertation is general enough to be applied in the investigation of diffusion of other kinds of software as well.
0489: Information Technology
0723: Information science