International Scope. This dimension studies the distribution of the foundations from a geographical point of view (i.e., whether the foundation has a international or local character).
Independent. Foundations can either serve a specific project, a set of projects or provide an umbrella for a number of smaller foundations that use it to simplify its own creation, management and legal processes. We focus on independent foundations (i.e., neither umbrella nor subsidiary foundations).
Transparent. Beyond the development itself, foundations may aim to help the project on several aspects, like nurturing the community or facilitating the creation of new related projects. These goals are normally stated as part of the foundations' mission as mentioned either in the foundation website or in their bylaws. Surprisingly, a significant number of foundations did not provide any explicit information on their mission and goals.
Software Product Supporter. We check each foundation in our dataset to find out whether its main goal is to support the development of a specific set of software projects. Other goals could include: training, certification or evangelization of open source in general.
This webpage presents and extended version of the results of our paper The Role of Foundations in Open Source Projects, published at the Software Engineering in Society track of the International Conference on Software Engineering in 2018. The work was awarded with the best paper prize of the track.
The study presented in the paper has been extended to cover up to 101 software foundations. The study regarding the international scope, independent and transparent foundations has been extended to cover all the foundations of the dataset. Additionally, the current results include the main activities targeted by the foundations.
More info can be found here.