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To date, numerous open source projects are hosted on many online repositories. While some of these projects are active and thriving, some projects are either languishing or showing no development activities at all. This phenomenon thus begs the important question of what are the influential factors that affect the success of open source projects. In a quest to deepen our understanding of the evolution of open source projects, this research aims to analyze the success of open source projects by using the theoretical lens of social network analysis. Based on extensive analyses of data collected from online repositories, we study the impact of the communication patterns of software development teams on the demand and supply outcomes of these projects, while accounting for project-specific characteristics. Using panel data analysis of data over 13 months, we find significant impacts of communication patterns on project outcomes over the long term.
Date of Conference: 5-8 Jan. 2009