Category Archives: Announcement

OpenSym 2018 Call for Papers (regular papers)

Submission deadline: March 15, 2018, 23h59, any time on Earth

All the submissions are done via the EasyChair platform, here:

About the Conference

The 14th International Symposium on Open Collaboration (OpenSym 2018) is the premier conference on open collaboration research and practice, including open source, open data, open science, open education, wikis and related social media, Wikipedia, and IT-driven open innovation research.

OpenSym is the only conference that brings together the different strands of open collaboration research and practice, seeking to create synergies and inspire new collaborations between people from computer science, information science, social science, humanities, and everyone interested in understanding open collaboration and how it is changing our society.

This year’s conference will be held in Paris, France on August 22-24, 2018.  A Doctoral Symposium will take place on August 21, 2018.


We are looking for submissions on, but not limited to, the following topics:

  • Open Collaboration Research, esp. Wikis and Social Media
    • Novel open collaboration technologies ranging from entirely new socio-technical systems to MediaWiki extensions
    • Wikis in corporations, academia, non-profits, and other organizations
    • Online collaboration using social media technologies (e.g., Wikis, Blogs, Twitter)
    • Theoretical work on open collaboration
    • Digital divides and open collaboration technologies
  • Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS)
    • FLOSS development communities, including both software engineering aspects and human factors
    • FLOSS development processes, such as code reviews, joining process, etc.
  • Open Data, Open Access, and Open Science
    • Open data quality, standards, measures and metrics
    • Open data and open science methods, applications and prototypes
    • Best practices and case studies for Open Data and Open Science
    • Repositories, networks and working platforms for open scientific communication, collaboration, exchange and access to open knowledge
  • Open Education
    • Tools and methods for managing, storing and sharing of Open Educational Resources (OER)
    • Open online learning environments such as MOOCs
    • Enabling individual learning paths
    • Connecting formal and informal learning
    • Supporting self-paced learning and co-construction of knowledge
    • Development of new knowledge or products (e.g. Maker Spaces), collecting data (e.g. Citizen Science) or discussing political topics (e.g. e-participation).
  • IT-Driven Open Innovation
    • Architecture and design of open innovation systems
    • The role of IT-artifacts in open and collaborative innovation activities
    • Implementation of open innovation platforms in corporate IT landscapes
    • IT security, intellectual property and personal anonymity in open innovation
    • Open innovation and GLAM
  • Open Policy/Open Government
    • Open policy formulation and design
    • Implications of open policies for governments
    • Implementation of open policies
    • Measuring the success and impact of open policies
    • Best practices and cases studies of open policy/government
    • Openness in various public initiatives (e.g. Smart Cities, Internet of Things etc.)
    • Open Law
  • Wikipedia and Wikimedia Research
    • Participation in Wikimedia communities
    • Group Dynamics and Organization in Wikipedia and related projects
    • Readership/Engagement on Wikipedia and related projects
    • Technical Infrastructure and Design in Wikimedia projects
    • Evaluating Content of Wikimedia projects
    • Knowledge Diffusion, Outreach, and Generalization

Submission Information and Instructions

All the submissions are done via the EasyChair platform, here:

Paper Presentation: OpenSym 2018 will be organized as a one track conference in order to emphasize the interdisciplinary character of this conference and to encourage discussion.

Submission Deadline: The research paper submission deadline is March 15th 2018. Submitted papers should present integrative reviews or original reports of substantive new work: theoretical, empirical, and/or in the design, development and/or deployment of novel concepts, systems, and mechanisms. Research papers will be reviewed to meet rigorous academic standards of publication. Papers will be reviewed for relevance, conceptual quality, innovation and clarity of presentation.

Paper Length: There is no minimum or maximum length for submitted papers. Rather, reviewers will be instructed to weigh the contribution of a paper relative to its length. Papers should report research thoroughly but succinctly: brevity is a virtue. A typical length of a “long research paper” is 10 pages (formerly the maximum length limit and the limit on OpenSym tracks), but may be shorter if the contribution can be described and supported in fewer pages—shorter, more focused papers (called “short research papers” previously) are encouraged and will be reviewed like any other paper. While we will review papers longer than 10 pages, the contribution must warrant the extra length. Reviewers will be instructed to reject papers whose length is incommensurate with the size of their contribution. Papers should be formatted in ACM SIGCHI paper format. Reviewing is not double-blind so manuscripts do not need to be anonymized.

Posters: As in previous years, OpenSym will also be hosting a poster session at the conference. To propose a poster, authors should submit an extended abstract (not more than 4 pages) describing the content of the poster which will be published in a non-archival companion proceedings to the conference. Posters should use the ACM SIGCHI templates for extended abstracts. An example of a poster abstract can be found here. Reviewing is not double-blind so abstracts do not need to be anonymized.

Paper Proceedings: OpenSym is held in-cooperation with ACM SIGWEB and ACM SIGSOFT and the conference proceedings will be archived in the ACM digital library like all prior editions. OpenSym seeks to accommodate the needs of the different research disciplines it draws on including disciplines with archival conference proceedings and disciplines where authors usually present at conferences and publish later. Authors, whose submitted papers have been accepted for presentation at the conference have a choice of:

  • having their paper become part of the official proceedings, archived in the ACM Digital Library,
  • having their paper published in the conference website only, with no transfer of copyright from the authors,
  • having no publication record at all but only the presentation at the conference.

Response from authors: For the second time at OpenSym, authors will be given the opportunity to write a response to their reviews before final decisions are made. This should be treated as an opportunity to correct any mistakes or misconceptions in the reviews as well as to propose minor changes that the authors can make during the two weeks between notification and the camera-ready deadline.


Important Dates

  • Submission deadline: March 15, 2018 (regular papers),
  • Reviews sent to authors: May 11, 2018
  • Response to reviews from authors due: May 20, 2018
  • Final decision notification: June 15, 2018
  • Camera-ready papers due: June 22, 2018
  • Papers available online: July 13, 2018

Conference Organization

The general chairs of the conference are Nicolas Jullien and Olivier Berger, IMT, France. Feel free to contact us with any questions you might have at

The program chair is Matt Germonprez (University of Nebraska at Omaha). The Organizational Chair is Ghislaine Le Gall (IMT Atlantique). Associate Chairs and program committee members will be listed here as the committee is finalized.

Industry and Community Track

Defined as “collaboration that is egalitarian (everyone can join, no principled or artificial barriers to participation exist), meritocratic (decisions and status are merit-based rather than imposed) and self-organizing (processes adapt to people rather than people adapt to pre-defined processes)”, we are seeking community contributions that best exemplify this definition of open collaboration.

Industry and community contributions can stem from and address the different open collaboration domains such as:

  • Free, libre, and open source software projects and practice
  • Open data projects and practice
  • Open access projects and practice
  • Open Law
  • IT-driven open innovation projects and practice
  • Wikipedia and related Wikimedia foundation projects and practice
  • Open science and education
  • Other open collaboration (wikis, social media, etc.) projects and practice
  • Open innovation in general

Types of Community Track Submissions

The following types of papers can be submitted to the community track:

  • Experience reports long and short: A regular presentation slot (30min) will be provided
  • Workshop proposals: A workshop slot (half-day or full-day) will be provided
  • Panel proposals: A session (90min) discussion slot for the panel will be provided
  • Demo proposals: Space and time is provided during the demo session (90min)
  • Tutorial proposals: A tutorial slot (90min) will be provided at the conference

Submissions are reviewed by the community track committee for their interest to the OpenSym community in general. For questions about community track submissions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

Experience Reports

Experience reports are an integral part of the conference program. These are opportunities to discuss how ideas that sound good on paper (and at conferences!) work in real life. Many attendees want to learn from people on the front lines what it is like to do things like start a company wiki, run an open source project, or build a political campaign using open collaboration systems.

Experience reports are not research papers; their goal is to present experience and reflections on a particular case, and they are reviewed for usefulness, clarity and reflection. Strong experience reports discuss both benefits and drawbacks of the approaches used and clearly call out lessons learned. Reports may focus on a particular aspect of technology usage and practice, or describe broad project experiences.

Short experience reports may be 2-4 pages long, long experience reports may be 5-10 pages long. At the conference, a regular presentation slot (30min) will be provided.


Workshops provide an opportunity for researchers and practitioners to discuss and learn about topics that require in-depth, extended engagement such as new systems, research methods, standards, and formats.

Workshop proposals should describe what you intend to do and how your session will meet the criteria described above. It should include a concise abstract, proposed time frame (half-day or full-day), what you plan to do during the workshop, and one-paragraph biographies of all organizers.

Workshop proposals will be reviewed and selected for their interest to the community. Each accepted workshop will be provided with a meeting room for either a half or full day. Organizers may also request technology and materials (projector, flip pads, etc).

A workshop proposal may be up to 4 pages long. At the conference, a workshop slot (half-day or full-day) will be provided.


Panels provide an interactive forum for bringing together people with interesting points of view to discuss compelling issues around open collaboration. Panels involve participation from both the panelists and audience members in a lively discussion. Proposals for panels should describe the topics and goals and explain how the panel will be organized and how the OpenSym community will benefit. It should include a concise abstract and one-paragraph biographies of panelists and moderators. Panel submissions will be reviewed and selected for their interest to the community.

A panel proposal may be up to 4 pages long. At the conference, a session (90min) discussion slot for the panel will be provided.


No format is better suited for demonstrating the utility of new collaboration technologies than showing and using them. Demonstrations give presenters an opportunity to show running systems and gather feedback. Demo submissions should provide a setup for the demo, a specific description of what you plan to demo, what you hope to get out of demoing, and how the audience will benefit. A short note of any special technical requirements should be included. Demo submissions will be reviewed based on their relevance to the community.

A demo proposal may be up to 2 pages long. At the conference, space and time will be provided at the demo session (90min).


Tutorials tutorials are half-day classes, taught by experts, designed to help professionals rapidly come up to speed on a specific technology or methodology. Tutorials can be lecture-oriented or participatory. Tutorial attendees deserve the highest standard of excellence in tutorial preparation and delivery. Tutorial presenters are typically experts in their chosen topic and experienced speakers skilled in preparing and delivering educational presentations. When selecting tutorials, we will consider the presenter’s knowledge of the proposed topic and past success at teaching it.

A tutorial proposal may be up to 4 pages long. At the conference, a tutorial slot (90min) will be provided.

Submission Information and Instructions

Submissions should follow the standard ACM proceedings format. All papers must conform at time of submission to the formatting instructions and must not exceed the page limits, including all text, references, appendices and figures. All submissions must in PDF format.

All papers and posters should be submitted electronically through EasyChair using

Authors should submit by the first submission deadline to ensure that space is left at the conference. A second later deadline will allow for a limited number of submissions to be considered for inclusion in the conference as well.

  • First submission deadline: April 22nd, 2018
  • First notification to authors: May 10th, 2018

As long as it is April 22nd, 2018, somewhere on earth, your submission will be accepted.

Community Track Committee

Committee Chairs

Benjamin Jean (Inno 3)

Olivier Berger (IMT-Telecom Sud Paris)

Committee Members

To be announced

Determining the Geographical distribution of a Community by means of a Time-zone Analysis

Title: Determining the Geographical distribution of a Community by means of a Time-zone Analysis

Authors: Jesus M. Gonzalez-Barahona, Gregorio Robles (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos) and Daniel Izquierdo-Cortazar (Bitergia)

Abstract: Free/libre/open source software projects are usually developed by a geographically distributed community of developers and contributors. In contrast to traditional corporate environments, it is hard to obtain information about how the community is geographically distributed, mainly because participation is open to volunteers and in many cases it is just occasional. During the last years, specially with the increasing implication of institutions, non-profit organizations and companies, there is a growing interest in having information about the geographic location of developers. This is because projects want to be as global as possible, in order to attract new contributors, users and, of course, clients. In this paper we show a methodology to obtain the geographical distribution of a development community by analyzing the source code management system and the mailing lists they use.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Monitoring the Gender Gap with Wikidata Human Gender Indicators

Title: Monitoring the Gender Gap with Wikidata Human Gender Indicators

Authors: Maximilian Klein (GroupLens Research), Harsh Gupta, Vivek Rai (Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur), Piotr Konieczny (Hanyang University) and Haiyi Zhu (GroupLens Research)

Abstract: The gender gap in Wikipedia’s content, specifically in the representation of women in biographies, is well-known but has been difficult to measure. Furthermore the impacts of efforts to address this gender gap have received little attention. To investigate we utilise Wikidata, the database that feeds Wikipedia, and introduce the “Wikidata Human Gender Indicators” (WHGI), a free and open source, longitudinal, biographical dataset monitoring gender disparities across time, space, culture, occupation and language. Through these lenses we show how the representation of women is changing along 11 dimensions. Validations of WHGI are presented against three exogenous datasets: the world’s historical population, “traditional” gender-disparity indices (GDI, GEI, GGGI and SIGI), and occupational gender according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Furthermore, to demonstrate its general use in research, we revisit previously published findings on Wikipedia’s gender bias that can be strengthened by WHGI.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Urban Data Platforms – An Overview

Ina Schieferdecker of Fraunhofer FOKUS (Berlin), will be presenting the following keynote at OpenSym 2016:

Title: Urban Data Platforms – An Overview

Abstract: Along the increasing digitization and interconnection in almost every domain in society or business, data is growing exponentially. It is expected that the worldwide Internet traffic will triple until 2020 in comparison to 2015. In the same time, the transmitted data volume will move from 53,2 Exabytes per months to 161 Exabytes per months [Cisco, 2016]. Cities and communities can support the provisioning and usage of urban data and benefit from resulting new services for the monitoring, understanding, decision making, steering, and control. Providing urban data is also supported by the ongoing movement of opening governmental data, but goes beyond. Urban data can include data from public, industrial, scientific or private sources. Yet, the design of urban data is still ongoing and numerous initiatives and standardization efforts on smart cities and communities put the grounds for the uptake and interoperability of urban data.

Speaker’s Biography: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Ina Schieferdecker is Director of Fraunhofer FOKUS, Berlin, coordinates Open Data and ICT for Smart Cities at that institute and is also professor for Model-Driven Engineering and Quality Assurance of Software-Based Systems at Freie Universität Berlin. Her research interests include urban data platforms, critical infrastructures, networking, conformance, interoperability, security and certification. Schieferdecker received a PhD in electrical engineering from Technical University Berlin. She is President of the ASQF and member of the German Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech), IEEE, ACM, and GI. She is member of the Nationale Plattform Zukunftsstadt, of the acatech Working Group Stadt der Zukunft, of the Smart City Network Berlin and of Fraunhofer Morgenstadt.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Out of Altruism or Because it Reads Well on the CV?: The Motivations for Participation in the Freifunk Community Compared to FLOSS

Title: Out of Altruism or Because it Reads Well on the CV?: The Motivations for Participation in the Freifunk Community Compared to FLOSS

Authors: Lyudmila Vaseva (Freie Universitaet Berlin)

Abstract: Motivation of free, libre and open source software developers has been widely studied over the years. The reasons people engage in this seemingly altruistic behavior have been elaborated and classified. The present work addresses a slightly different issue: what motivates individuals to participate in community network projects? Are the reasons similar to or quite distinct from these relevant to contributors to free software? Based on recently conducted interviews with community network activists from the Germany based project Freifunk and established FLOSS motivation research, we will analyse the specifics of the Freifunk project and the factors which spur its members to action. The obtained insights could then hopefully be used to understand the underlying group processes and help build sustainable communities.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Evaluating Open Collaboration Opportunities in the Fire Service with FireCrowd

Title: Evaluating Open Collaboration Opportunities in the Fire Service with FireCrowd

Authors: Eleanor R. Burgess (University College London) and Aaron Shaw (Northwestern University)

Abstract: In emergency response organizations like the fire service, personnel require easy access to reliable, up-to-date safety protocols. Systems for creating and managing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) within these command and control organizations are often rigid, inaccessible, and siloed. Open collaboration systems like wikis and social computing tools have the potential to address these limitations, but have not been analyzed for intra-organizational use in emergency services. In response to a request from the Fire Protection Research Foundation (FPRF) we evaluated a high-fidelity open collaboration system prototype, FireCrowd, that was designed to manage SOPs within the U.S. fire service. We use the prototype as a technology probe and apply human-centered design methods in a suburban fire department in the Chicago area. We find that organizational factors would inhibit the adoption of some open collaboration practices and identify points in current practices that offer opportunities for open collaboration in the future.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Review of Estimation Method of Economic Effects Created by Using Open Data

Title: Review of Estimation Method of Economic Effects Created by Using Open Data

Authors: Tetsuo Noda, Masami Honda (Shimane University), Akio Yoshida (Independent) and Shane Coughlan (Opendawn, Kagawa)

Abstract: Public data collected or possessed by administrative agencies and subsequently released as Open Data is expected to bring about positive economic effects. The purpose of this paper is to establish whether that expectation holds true and how to best estimate the positive economic effect provided by the utilization of open data. This paper considers previous research covering the economic impact of open data and the utility of the approaches they suggest.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Politics of Cooption in Free and Open Communities

Bradley Kuhn of Software Freedom Conservancy, will be presenting the following keynote at OpenSym 2016:

Title: Politics of Cooption in Free and Open Communities

Abstract: Developing software where all users have equal freedom to share, copy, modify and redistribute the software – in a community where all participants are equal – was once an odd fringe activity and cause only of interest to a small group of radical software developers. Today, this mechanism of sharing and collaboration is widely adopted not only by the software industry as a whole, but also by communities doing other collaborative work in areas as wide ranged as developing online encyclopedias, performing astrophysics research, and sharing information about users’ favorite television programs.

As “Open Source” has become a fad, it has been integrated into the larger culture. Furthermore, the software freedom movement has undeniably entered a period of cooption by for-profit companies who seek to exploit the benefits of these sharing communities, but do not necessarily wish to engage as equals with the individual hobbyists who build and foster those communities.

This talk, given by a practitioner who works daily in the politics of software freedom, will explore the current state of this political cooption, anecdotally examine how the political environment has begun to influence the structure of Open Source and Free Software projects, and consider whether these forces are likely to influence other non-software communities who have adopted the methodologies and principles of software freedom for their own work.

Speaker’s Biography: Bradley M. Kuhn is the President and Distinguished Technologist at Software Freedom Conservancy, on the Board of Directors of the Free Software Foundation (FSF), and editor-in-chief of Kuhn began his work in the software freedom movement as a volunteer in 1992, when he became an early adopter of the GNU/Linux operating system, and began contributing to various Free Software projects. He worked during the 1990s as a system administrator and software developer for various companies, and taught AP Computer Science at Walnut Hills High School in Cincinnati. Kuhn’s non-profit career began in 2000, when he was hired by the FSF. As FSF’s Executive Director from 2001-2005, Kuhn led FSF’s GPL enforcement, launched its Associate Member program, and invented the Affero GPL. Kuhn was appointed President of Software Freedom Conservancy in April 2006, was Conservancy’s primary volunteer from 2006–2010, and has been a full-time staffer since early 2011. Kuhn holds a summa cum laude B.S. in Computer Science from Loyola University in Maryland, and an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Cincinnati. Kuhn’s Master’s thesis discussed methods for dynamic interoperability of Free Software programming languages. Kuhn received the O’Reilly Open Source Award in 2012, in recognition for his lifelong policy work on copyleft licensing. Kuhn has a blog, is on and co-hosts the audcast, Free as in Freedom.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.

Health & Play – Addressing together the challenges of creating an open source standard for breathing games

Title: Health & Play – Addressing together the challenges of creating an open source standard for breathing games

Authors: Fabio Balli (Concordia University)

Abstract: This proposed workshop invites us to discover an initiative – the Breathing Games – that aims to mobilize citizens around respiratory health by creating a free/libre and open source standard for health games – a common. After being presented the two years journey of the initiative, participants will use their skills and talents to meet the current challenges of an open collaboration projet.

This contribution to OpenSym 2016 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2016 proceedings on or after August 17, 2016.