Wi-com - Understanding motivations of wireless communities participants
The recent emergence of wireless communities is one of the most interesting phenomena in the telecommunication industry. The key research issue for appraising the possible development and sustained existence of wireless communities is to understand what motivates members to join and actively participate (contributing their own resources) to these communities. Yet, because wireless communities are a recent phenomenon, existing research about this topic has several limitations that this project intends to address. This project intends to: 1) develop a theoretical model drawing on existing motivation theories, studies of other online communities types and a first round of qualitative interviews with some members in order to consider specific motivations for participating in such communities; 2) collect further empirical evidence using a large-scale survey of active members of a large hybrid wireless community like FON and analyze it using quantitative models; and 3) look at how motivations evolve over time using a successive round of interviews with the same members interviewed before (thus approaching the problem with a longitudinal perspective).