Quotation Schirg, Florian. 2014. Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in Emerging Countries - A Qualitative Case Study on the Role of Users in Policy Development in Southern India. 12th Annual Open and User Innovation Conference, Harvard Business School, Cambridge, Boston, Vereinigte Staaten/USA, 28.07.-30,07.




A prosperous ICT sector stimulates macroeconomic growth, employment; enables access to markets, increases competitiveness, augments social inclusion and facilitates political participation. (UN ICT-Taskforce 2005). Many see FOSS as strategic tool for developing economies to foster growth, reduce the digital divide and advance the development of ICT. (e.g. Rajani et al. 2003, Weber 2003, Ghosh 2004, Debroy & Morris 2004, Proenza 2005, Miscione et al. 2008) Ghosh (2003) highlights the potential to fight poverty; it offers sustainable economic viability, open platforms to gain ICT-competencies, adaptability and cost advantages. FOSS-friendly open-standard policies offer opportunities: long-term strategic independence, security concerns in governmental core areas, avoiding lock-in effects, or local value creation. FOSS augments the contestability of markets if open standards prevail, as a potential threat disables the monopolist to fully exert power in product and prize policy. (Mundhenke 2007) New business models offer opportunities to build professional capacity, access information, conduct social and policy research, and improve environment, agriculture and healthcare. (Dougherty 2006) The guiding question was: Does FOSS influence the Indian economy, its development and its social environment? Ghosh (2003) showed how FOSS solves the issue of software license costs in countries with low purchasing power: Basic licenses require average workers in Burundi to work 67 months, in India this exceeds 14 months, in the US that is merely 0.19 of a month to earn the equivalent. A rational agent in a low income country consequently should recur to FOSS to avoid the high opportunity costs. Thus, the second research question was: Does the specific economic situation increase use of FOSS in India?


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Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Paper presented at an academic conference or symposium
Language English
Title Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in Emerging Countries - A Qualitative Case Study on the Role of Users in Policy Development in Southern India
Event 12th Annual Open and User Innovation Conference
Year 2014
Date 28.07.-30,07.
Country United States/USA
Location Harvard Business School, Cambridge, Boston
URL http://www.hbs.edu/faculty/conferences/2014-oui/


Schirg, Florian (Former researcher)
Institute for Strategy, Technology and Organization IN (Details)
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