Networks of innovation: tracing the structures of flows among not-for-profit open source software foundations, philanthropies and intermediaries, 2004–06
Andersen, Kirsten; McInerney, Paul-Brian (2014)


Foundations are said to spark and facilitate innovation in the non-profit sector. This article offers a structural-institutional analysis of organisational and technological innovation in the non-profit sector. The world of free/open source software (F/OSS) provides the empirical case
with which to study how innovation takes place among organisations and how foundations can contribute to it. Based on a social network analysis of hyperlinks combined with qualitative data from interviews and participant observations, the authors demonstrate how flows of money, knowledge and
technology contribute to innovation within a network. A network consisting of different kinds of foundations and intermediaries that came together from 2004 to 2006 provides a unique example of relationships between foundations and grantees that allowed for the coordination of innovations
without the explicit control of any of its constituent members. The implications of innovation networks for technology adoption in the non-profit sector are discussed.


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