Participation in Hackathons: A Multi-Methods View on Motivators, Demotivators and Citizen Participation

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Abstract

Hackathons are problem-focused programming events that allow conceiving, implementing, and presenting digital innovations. The number of participants is one of the key success factors of hackathons. In order to maximize that number, it is essential to understand what motivates people to participate. Previous work on the matter focused on quantitative studies and addressed neither the topic of demotivators nor the relationship between participation in hackathons and citizen participation, although hackathons constitute a promising participation method where citizens can build their own project, amongst other methods such as meetings or online platforms. Therefore, in this study, we examined a specific hackathon organized in Belgium and collected data about the motivators and demotivators of the participants through a questionnaire and in-depth interviews, thereby following a multi-methods approach. This study contributes to the scarce theoretical discussion on the topic by defining precisely the motivators and demotivators and provides recommendations for hackathon organizers to help them bring in more participants. Furthermore, from our exploration of the relationship between participation in hackathons and citizen participation, we suggest a citizen participation ecosystem embedding hackathons to provide benefits for the society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages229-246
Number of pages18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020
EventInternational Conference on Research Challenges in Information Science - Limassol, Cyprus
Duration: 23 Sep 202025 Sep 2020
Conference number: 14

Conference

ConferenceInternational Conference on Research Challenges in Information Science
Abbreviated titleRCIS2020
CountryCyprus
CityLimassol
Period23/09/2025/09/20

Keywords

  • Citizen participation
  • Hackathon
  • Motivator
  • Multi-methods

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