Governance of online creation communities for the building of digital commons: Viewed through the framework of the institutional analysis and development
Working paper: Fuster Morell, M. (2013). Governance of online creation communities for the building of digital commons: Viewed through the framework of the institutional analysis and development. Madison, M. J., Strandburg, K., & Frischmann, B. (2013). Convening Cultural Commons. Oxford University Press. (Forthcoming)
Abstract: This chapter addresses the governance of a specific type of constructed common-pool resource, online creation communities (OCCs).OCCs are communities of individuals that mainly interact via a platform of online participation, with the goal of building and sharing a common-pool resource resulting from collaboratively systematizing and integrating dispersed information and knowledge resources. Previous research of the governance of OCCs has been based on analyzing specific aspects of the governance. However, there has been a gap in the literature, one of lacking a comprehensive and holistic view of what governance means in collective action online. This chapter provides a set of dimensions that define the governance of OCCs. Particularly, most previous work did not consider infrastructure provision in their analysis. This chapter challenges previous literature by questioning the neutrality of infrastructure for collective action. The governance of OCCs is here analyzed through the institutional analysis and development (IAD) framework, building on Madison, Frischmann & Strandburg’s (2010) adaptation of this framework to constructing commons in the cultural environment. References to Schweik and English’s adaptation of IAD to free and open source communities will also be made. The empirical data are drawn from a statistical analysis of 50 cases and four case studies on OCCs (Wikipedia, Flickr, Wikihow& Openesf). The empirical analysis results in a set of models of OCCs governance. The conclusions provide an assessment of the utility of IAD in the analysis of OCCs, and Madison, Frischmann & Strandburg’s adaptation. Additionally, it ends by addressing the defining characteristics of digital commons.