Business Intelligence

Opening Platforms: How, When And Why?

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Executive Summary

Platform-mediated networks encompass several distinct types of participants, including end users, complementary, platform providers who facilitate users' access to complements, and sponsors who develop platform technologies. Each of these roles can be opened - that is, structured to encourage participation - or closed. This paper reviews factors that motivate decisions to open or close mature platforms. Over time, forces tend to push both proprietary and shared platforms toward hybrid governance models characterized by centralized control over platform technology and shared responsibility for serving users.

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