Prof. Robert Kraut

Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA

"Commitment and Coordination in Open Source Production: Studies in Wikipedia"

(Vortrag im Rahmen der "Distinguished Lecture Series" des "Max Planck Instituts für Software-Systeme")

Online production communities are increasingly important, creating commercially valuable software (e.g., Linux), generating scientific data (e.g., and building history's largest encyclopedia (Wikipedia). Motivating and coordinating the volunteers who do this work is a serious problem for many communities. This talk will review empirical research, primarily based on data from Wikipedia, that examines some of the interpersonal and managerial tactics that online production communities use to socialize new community members, to coordinate the work of volunteers and to motivate them. Our research indicates, for example, that broad-based participation is primarily valuable when a subset of the volunteers does the lion's share of the work, but is less valuable when work is distributed more evenly among them. It suggests that group goals help both motivate and socialize participants. It identifies the types of interactions between new community members and old-timers that foster commitment and continued participation. The talk will also review the CrowdForge system for coordinating the micro-contributions of Amazon Mechanical Turk workers, so that they can accomplish complex and highly interdependent projects.

Bio: Robert Kraut is Herbert A. Simon Professor of Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon University. He received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Yale University in 1973, and has previously taught at the University of Pennsylvania and Cornell University. He was a research scientist and manager at AT&T Bell Laboratories and Bell Communications Research for twelve years. Dr. Kraut has broad interests in the design and social impact of computing and computer-mediated communication. He conducts research on everyday use of the Internet, technology and conversation, collaboration in small work groups, computing in organizations and contributions to online communities. He is the lead author on a new book from MIT Press on Evidence-Based Social Design: Using the Social Sciences as the Basis for Building Online Communities. He has served and chaired National Research Council committees on technology and work in small groups. More information about Professor Kraut is available at Professor Robert Kraut

Zeit: Dienstag, 08. März 2011, 11:00 Uhr
Ort: TU Kaiserslautern, Bau 57, Rotunde