Online communities are increasingly seen as new forms of organizing. However, we have limited understanding of how leadership structures in an online community emerge. Prior literature focuses on leadership that is relatively concentrated in the hands of select individuals, once the online community has already been established. This paper therefore seeks to explore how leadership evolves throughout the history of an online community, from an embryonic stage, through the emergence stage to the establish stage. In the context of an online community built around a GitHub-hosted project called GitPoint, we carried out a content analysis of interactions conducted across social networks, including Twitter and Gitter, between its individual members. Based on this analysis, the paper offers insights into the emergence of leadership structures in an online community and makes key contributions to the literature on leadership in online communities.
Harysi, Mohammed Aael; Negoita, Bogdan; and Nandhakumar, Joe, (2019). "THE EVOLUTION OF LEADERSHIP STRUCTURES IN ONLINE COMMUNITIES: A SOCIAL NETWORK PERSPECTIVE". In Proceedings of the 27th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS), Stockholm & Uppsala, Sweden, June 8-14, 2019. ISBN 978-1-7336325-0-8 Research Papers.