OPEN! Methods and tools for community-based product development

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The French-German research project "OPEN! Methods and tools for community-based product development" aimed at:

  • understanding open source product development, showing concrete evidence of this emerging practice and delivering detailed description of the phenomenon;
  • modelling the open source product development process as an alternative to well-anchored industrial product development processes;
  • providing concrete process support in the form of methods and IT-tools. It will particularly be focused on the concept of a open design platform.

The project lasted from March 2016 to September 2019 and was co-financed by the German and the French national research foundations DFG and ANR.

The follow-on project OPEN!NEXT (see under will continue the work done in OPEN!. Until further notice here this page will remain active.

Upcoming event

First International workshop on Open Design and Open Source Hardware Product Development

  • 5-6 March 2020 Grenoble (France) "LINK"

Contents of the wiki

All along the project, we will use this wiki to share results and data with the open source hardware community. Check for example the following pages:


Research programme

The aim of the project is to characterize current practices of open source product development in order to develop concrete guidance to support design process efficiency of open source product development projects. It focuses particularly on:

  • the organizational and business environment of open design projects: What business models can be built based on open design? What are the motivational drivers of project contributors and what are the different roles they may play? How is governance implemented? Through what regulation mechanisms are decisions taken?
  • the open source product development process: What can ensure an efficient distribution of design tasks in a loosely-coupled organization? What validation mechanisms ensure the approval or rejection of individuals` contributions? How to ensure that contributions converge and let emerge a sufficiently designed product?
  • the supporting information systems: What structure of product data information is adapted to a decentralized organization of design tasks? What capabilities should offer an online collaborative design platform to support the efficient collaboration of distant designers? What is the typology of information and intermediary objects to be stored and edited online to ensure building a common understanding between project contributors?

Project partners and staff




Consulting partners


Practical guides

Peer reviewed scientific publications

  • Muschard, B., Jérémy Bonvoisin. “The CubeFactory2 - an off-grid and portable mini-factory”, accepted for publication in Journal of Open Hardware, in edition.
  • Mies, R., J. Bonvoisin, L. von Damaros, R. Jochem. 2019. „Qualitätsverbesserung in Open-Source-Hardware-Communities“. In: Schmitt R. (Hrsg.) Potenziale Künstlicher Intelligenz für die Qualitätswissenschaft. S. 57-72. Springer Vieweg, Berlin, Heidelberg. DOI:
  • Bonvoisin, J., L. Thomas, R. Mies, C. Gros, R. Stark, K. Samuel, R. Jochem, and J.-F. Boujut. 2017. Current state of practices in open source product development. In: Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED17), Vol. 2: Design Processes | Design Organisation and Management, Vancouver, Canada, 21.-25.08.2017, ISBN 978-1-904670-90-2, p. 111-120.
  • Thomas, Laetitia, and Karine Samuel. 2017. “Characteristics of Open Source Business Models.”, XXVII ISPIM Innovation Conference - Composing the Innovation Symphony, Vienna, Austria, 18-21 June 2017.
  • Bonvoisin, J., R. Mies, R. Jochem, and R. Stark. 2017. Vielfalt und Stand der Open-Source-Hardware. In: Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven zur Zukunft der Wertschöpfung, J. Wülfsberg, T. Redlich and M. Moritz (eds.). ISBN 978-3-658-20264-4. Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden.
  • Bonvoisin, J., L. Thomas, C. Gros, R. Mies, R. Stark, K. Samuel, R. Jochem, and J.-F. Boujut., "Practices in the design of open source products by online communities", 15e Colloque National AIP-Priméca, La Plagne (73) – 12 au 14 avril 2017.
  • Bonvoisin, Jérémy, Robert Mies, Roland Jochem, and Rainer Stark. 2016. "Theorie Und Praxis in der Open-Source-Produktentwicklung." In: 1. Interdisziplinäre Konferenz zur Zukunft der Wertschöpfung – Konferenzband, J. Wülfsberg, T. Redlich and M. Moritz (eds.), ISBN 978-3-86818-091-6. This contribution received a best paper award.
  • Bonvoisin, J. K. Galla, S. Prendeville. 2017. "Design Principles for Do-It-Yourself Production." In: Campana G., Howlett R., Setchi R., Cimatti B. (eds) Sustainable Design and Manufacturing 2017, 77-86. Smart Innovation, Systems and Technologies, vol 68. Springer, Cham.
  • Bonvoisin, J., 2016. Implications of Open Source Design for Sustainability. In: Sustainable Design and Manufacturing 2016, Volume 52 of the series Smart Innovation, Systems and Technologies, R. Setchi, R. J. Howlett, Y. Liu, P. Theobald (Eds.), pp 49-59, Springer.

Other publications

Recorded talks

Blog posts

They talk about us

  • Product development for everyone, TU Berlin Press release 2016/3, 13.01.2016 (EN DE)

Want to participate?

Participative projects

Check our participative projects:


Jean-François Boujut
Grenoble University
Laboratoire G-SCOP
+33 (0) 4 76 57 47 06

Robert Mies
Technische Universität Berlin
Institute for Machine Tools and Factory Management
Chair of Industrial Information Technology
+49 (30) 314-25930