Where Are Females in OSS Projects? Socio Technical Interactions

  • Ikram El AsriEmail author
  • Noureddine Kerzazi
Conference paper
Part of the IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology book series (IFIPAICT, volume 568)


Recent researches provide evidence that women are underrepresented in the field of computer science. It has been reported that less than 10% of Open Source Software (OSS) contributors in GitHub are women. Although related qualitative and quantitative studies point out the gender gap, the technical and social interaction of females within OSS still remain unexplored and largely misunderstood. As a first step towards proposing articulated actions towards diversity and inclusion, we need first to explore the gender gap in terms of activities and interactions. Thus, we propose to answer the questions: where are females in OSS projects? How they evolve? and How they contribute to the sustainability of the OSS social capital?. We particularly focus on building socio-technical networks and analyze them to explain how females contribute and interact in practice. We reflect on interactions’ graphs and examine through a preliminary study, using data from six OSS projects, possible links between existing findings and the directions we suggest for more gender diversity. We found that females are extremely underrepresented within OSS communities, but when they participate they are productive just as males, they evolve following relatively the same patterns than males and remain more involved in projects than males.


Gender Diversity Open Source Software Social Network Analysis Socio-Technical interactions 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Higher School for Computer Science and System Analysis (ENSIAS)Mohammed V UniversityRabatMorocco

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