Who is in Control in Crowdsourcing Initiatives? An Examination of the Case of Crowdmapping

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The crowdsourcing literature is dominated by the view that the crowd can be controlled and that owners should adopt different technologies to control it and its output. This paper questions the agency and role of the crowd. Specifically, it questions how and to what extent can control over the crowd be exercised. To this end, the paper adopts an interpretive approach to the enquiry. It examines a case of crowdsourcing in the understudied area of humanitarian response. Concepts from structuration theory are adopted to interpret the data. The analysis reveals the paradox of crowd interaction and owner control in crowdsourcing. It shows the crowd to be made up of knowledgeable and reflexive groups that effectively tackle methods aimed at controlling them. The implications of the study are then discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNordic Contributions in IS Research
Subtitle of host publication7th Scandinavian Conference on Information Systems, SCIS 2016 and IFIP8.6 2016, Ljungskile, Sweden, August 7-10, 2016, Proceedings
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-43597-8
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-43596-1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Aug 2016

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Business Information Processing
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
ISSN (Electronic)1865-1348

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