Drawing on the theory of social capital, we propose a cross-level model proposing that community-level social capital plays an important role in Open Source Software projects. Social capital, as resources lying within interpersonal relationships, is created and maintained as a by-product of social exchanges between developers working in the same OSS community. Social capital provides benefits both to the overall OSS community and to the individual developers. A high level of social capital in an OSS community can help facilitate the process of software development and make individuals’ experiences of working on OSS projects both satisfying and rewarding.
Wang, Jijie, "The Role of Social Capital in Open Source Software Communities" (2005). AMCIS 2005 Proceedings. 427.