OPEN! Methods and tools for community-based product development is a research project which started in March 2016. It is co-financed by the German and the French national research foundations DFG and ANR for a period of three years.

“This project aims at:

  • understanding open source product development, showing concrete evidence of this emerging practice and delivering detailed description of the phenomenon;
  • modeling the open source product development process as an alternative to well-anchored industrial product development processes;
  • providing concrete process support in the form of methods and IT-tools. It will particularly be focused on the concept of a open design platform.

The P2P Lab is a consulting partner to this research project.

Contents of the wiki

All along the project, we will use this wiki to share results and data with the open source hardware community. Check for example the following pages:

  • The page “Open-O-meter” defines a scale for measuring the “openness” of open source hardware.

Research programme

The aim of the project is to characterize current practices of open source product development in order to develop concrete guidance to support design process efficiency of open source product development projects. This guidance shall particularly consider:

  • the organizational and business environment of open design projects: What business models can be built based on open design? What are the motivational drivers of project contributors and what are the different roles they may play? How is governance implemented? Through what regulation mechanisms are decisions taken?
  • the open source product development process: What can ensure an efficient distribution of design tasks in a loosely-coupled organization? What validation mechanisms ensure the approval or rejection of individuals` contributions? How to ensure that contributions converge and let emerge a sufficiently designed product?
  • the supporting information systems: What structure of product data information is adapted to a decentralized organization of design tasks? What capabilities should offer an online collaborative design platform to support the efficient collaboration of distant designers? What is the typology of information and intermediary objects to be stored and edited online to ensure building a common understanding between project contributors?

This will be addressed through the development of:

  • a formalized open source product development process for coordinating individual efforts of community members towards a finished product design;
  • online tools enabling collaborative engineering, thus supporting simultaneously the three functional spaces of collaboration: communication (e.g. chat, wiki), cooperation (e.g. concurrent text editing) and coordination (e.g. task allocation through workflows).”

More information about this research project can be found here.

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.