Research On Open Source Software (Seminar)


Master course

Units / cycle

4 ECTS / every fall term


Open source software is being used by small and large companies, governments and other organizations in many business-critical systems. Nowadays there are more than a million open source projects on the software market being developed and maintained by paid and unpaid individuals as well as professional software companies and industry players. Research about technical aspects of open source software, business models, management and governance practices as well as community dynamics and contributor's motivations is abundant.

In this three-day course master students of information systems get an introduction into current research about open source, read and present academic papers on open source, and write an own working paper about a specific topic of their interest. These topics may cover issues about open source in the industry, reuse of open source components, business models with open source, inner source development within the pharma sector and many more.

Learning objectives

  • Participants get an overview of current research on open source software.
  • Participants understand the sources of data within open source projects and learn how to analyse them scientifically.
  • Participants learn how to use appropriate theory and methodology to develop an individual research paper.



Institute of Information Systems, Room 111, Engehaldenstrasse 8, Bern

Time / dates

  • Introduction to research on open source software, selection of papers by students
    Tuesday, 19 September 2017, 14h - 17h

  • Academic paper presentations by students and discussion of research proposals
    Thursday, 17 October 2017, 14h - 17h (time depending on # of students)

  • Submission of working papers to the group
    Thursday, 28 November 2017

  • Presentation and discussion of working papers
    Tuesday, 5 December 2017, 14h - 17h (time depending on # of students)




  • Presentation of academic paper on open source software research
  • Written working paper
  • Participation in discussions during the course