ICIS 2013 Workshop – Openness and Transparency Research

The Workshop on Openness and Transparency Research was held Sunday Dec 15, 2013, hosted by University College Cork’s Technology-Enabled Organizational Transparency and Openness Project (TOTO), co-located with the International Conference for Information Systems (ICIS) 2013 in Milan, IT, and funded by the Lewis Charitable Foundation (USA).

The purpose of this discussion-driven, interactive workshop was to bring together researchers investigating the diverse array of IS-enabled organizational openness and transparency phenomena, to share ideas and experiences and to frame the agenda for future research in these areas.


The workshop explored four key areas of open phenomena:

  • Development & Design: Free/Libre/Open Source Software, Open Hardware, Open Design (e.g. 3D Printing), Open APIs, ”The Programmable Web”, and related phenomena.
  • Knowledge & Scholarship: Open Content, Open Data, Open Access, Open Courseware, Citizen Science, and related phenomena.
  • Resources & Effort: Crowdfunding, Volunteer Computing, Crowdsourced Microwork, Crowdsourced Information Processing, and related phenomena.
  • Ideas & Innovation: Open Innovation, Collective Intelligence, Crowdsourced Problem Solving/Ideation, Product/Service Co-creation, and related phenomena.


  • Taking Stock:
    • Areas of Empirical Strength and Weakness: Do we have the right kind of data to understand phenomenon X? What critical data remain uncollected/unexplored? Are we measuring the right things? Etc.
    • Areas of Methodological Challenge and Opportunity: What are the data sources, data collection methods and data analysis methods that have worked well in the past? What are the sources and methods that have yet to be exploited but should be? Etc.
    • Areas of Analytical Consensus and Discord: Where empirical data are abundant, do we share a common interpretation of what they mean? What are the key areas of agreement/disagreement in our research community? Etc.
    • Areas of Theoretical Richness and Paucity: What are the theories that shape openness and transparency research? What external theories should we be applying more vigorously? What emergent theories should we seek to create? Etc.
  • Building a Common Language: Cross-topic discussion focused on forging a common vocabulary of concepts, labels and relationships between open phenomena.
  • Building a Common Agenda: Cross-topic discussion focused on mapping out the “horizontal” streams of inquiry that will help the global research community pursue a comprehensive and cohesive research agenda across and between the variety of openness and transparency phenomena.