SENSORICA can be described as a commons-based peer production community as defined by the p2pValue project, and as a permissionless p2p network like Bitcoin.Along with my hands-on involvement in SENSORICA, I have also contributed to other open networks and communities and observed their evolution. It didn't take long to noticed that these new types of organizations were developing similar problems as they were growing in complexity. A few months ago, I sat down to uncover the underlying mechanisms behind these problems. My theory is synthesized in the table below.
In essence, open networks and communities go through developmental stages. The transition from one stage to the next requires organizational transformations, which are adaptations to the new conditions that the organization is facing. More often than not, these transitions are accompanied by organizational crisis. Sometimes, these crisis are fatal, they destroy the organization. This is an attempt to inform those involved in setting up open communities and network, to help them steer clear of potential pitfalls as their organization mutates through its developmental stages.
Summary of developmental stages (see details below)
Contribution and reward
Ambiguous and ad hock
Friendly, loose, fun
Some basic roles, some norms, some procedures
Mostly friendly and fun
Dealing with complexity
Managing material assets
Volunteer and for benefit
Clear and more stable roles and relations, written rules, some adopted methodologies
Higher responsibility, some frustrations.
Dealing with the freerider
Tangible rewards generation
Mostly for benefit and volunteer
Clear and stable roles, formal relations, system of rules, body of methodologies, legal structure
Dealing with the thief
For benefit, wealth generation and projecting influence
Always filled roles structure, top governance, solid legal standing, proven body of methodologies, connections with the larger ecosystem
Responsible, formal, professional
Dealing with the jealous enemy
This table was created by Tibi, as part of a new synthesis work. In alpha version. CC BY-SA 3.0 licence
If the table above is not clear, if you need clarifications, please ask questions in the comments below, and I will use your feedback to improve this post.
More details and explanations