Participants’ Motivation Factors and Profile In Crowdsourced Law Reform

Title: Participants’ Motivation Factors and Profile In Crowdsourced Law Reform

Authors: Tanja Aitamurto (Stanford University), Hélène Landemore (Yale University)

Abstract: This paper examines participants’ motivation factors and identity in crowdsourced policy-making, in which citizens collaboratively participate in online ideation and knowledge creation for policy reforms. Drawing on data from a crowdsourced law reform in Finland, this paper examines the drivers of the participants and their demographic profile. The findings show that the participants typically are male, educated, full-time working professionals with a strong interest in the off-road traffic issue. The motivations to contribute to crowdsourced policy-making are a mix of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Intrinsic drivers include the desire to do what is one’s “civic duty,” that is, to participate constructively in a political process, and the desire to deliberate with peers and learn from them. Extrinsic motivations include the desire to have an impact on an issue of importance to participants. The drivers are, in part, similar to those that drive participation in traditional democratic processes like voting, and to those that motivate other volunteer-based large-scale online collaborations, like Wikipedia creation.

This contribution to OpenSym 2015 will be made available as part of the OpenSym 2015 proceedings (or companion) on or after August 19, 2015.

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