How is the use of Open Source software shifting work outside of traditional organisational boundaries? 

This Round 3 Innovation Fund project investigates the organisational location of OS software to understand OS work from the perspective of employers and their workforce.  

The development of business products and services underpinned by open source (OS) digital infrastructure is widespread.  This also raises important questions about how that work is resourced and managed within and beyond organisational boundaries.  

The research will investigate these questions through case studies of public and commercial sector organisations.

The innovative research design involves web scraping contributor data and qualitative interviews with software developers and senior staff to explore where, why and how OS software reconfigures work practices and cultures within and beyond organisational boundaries.  

It aims to provide valuable insights into both the sustainability of OS digital infrastructure and how digital technologies are transforming work in diverse ways.  


  • Web scraping 
  • Interviews 

Research questions  

  1. How, when and why do different organisations use OS digital infrastructure to deliver product and services?
  2. How do different organisations manage, support and prioritise the OS work of their staff to support digital infrastructure within and beyond the organisation?
  3. How do staff develop and maintain OS digital infrastructure within and beyond organisational boundaries? 


Principle Investigator: Rebecca Taylor 

Co-investigator: Mark Weal 

Project outputs

Unpaid work and the case of open source labour

How can a study of the unpaid labour involved in the development of open source software and code deepen our understanding of unpaid work in today's economy?