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Effects of extrinsic and intrinsic motivation on participation in crowdsourcing contest : A perspective of self-determination theory

Yuxiang Chris Zhao (School of Information Management, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China)
Qinghua Zhu (School of Information Management, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China)

Online Information Review

ISSN: 1468-4527

Article publication date: 4 November 2014

Abstract

Purpose

The rapid development of Web 2.0 and social media enables the rise of crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing contest is a typical case of crowdsourcing and has been adopted by many organisations for business solution and decision making. From a participant's perspective, it is interesting to explore what motivates people to participate in crowdsourcing contest. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the category of motivation based on self-determination theory and synthesises various motivation factors in crowdsourcing contest. Meanwhile, perceived motivational affordances and task granularity are also examined as the moderate constructs.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper builds a conceptual model to illustrate the relationships between various motivations (extrinsic and intrinsic) and participation effort under the moderating of perceived motivational affordances and task granularity. An empirical study is conducted to test the research model by surveying the Chinese participants of crowdsourcing contest.

Findings

The results show that various motivations might play different roles in relating to participation effort expended in the crowdsourcing contest. Moreover, task granularity may positively moderate the relationship between external motivation and participation effort. The results also show that supporting of a participant's perceived motivational affordances might strengthen the relationship between the individual's motivation with an internal focus (intrinsic, integrated, identified and introjected motivation) and participation effort.

Originality/value

Overall, the research has some conceptual and theoretical implications to the literature. This study synthesises various motivation factors identified by previous studies in crowdsourcing projects or communities as a form of motivation spectrum, namely external, introjected, identified, integrated and intrinsic motivation, which contributes to the motivation literatures. Meanwhile, the findings indicate that various motivations might play different roles in relating to participation effort expended in the crowdsourcing contest. Also, the study theoretically extends the crowdsourcing participation research to incorporate the effects of perceived motivational affordances in crowdsourcing contest. In addition, the study may yield some practical implications for sponsors, managers and designers in crowdsourcing contest.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the Editor-in-Chief and anonymous reviewers of Online Information Review for their help in improving this paper. The authors also thank Professor Susan Gasson for her insightful suggestions on an early draft of this manuscript and also Professor Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah for her constructive comments on this paper in the AIS-Joint Author Workshop at PACIS 2013. This work is jointly supported by the National Science Foundation in China (No. 71403119, 71390521 and 71473114), and the Ministry of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences Council in China (No. 13YJC870033).

Citation

Chris Zhao, Y. and Zhu, Q. (2014), "Effects of extrinsic and intrinsic motivation on participation in crowdsourcing contest : A perspective of self-determination theory", Online Information Review, Vol. 38 No. 7, pp. 896-917. https://doi.org/10.1108/OIR-08-2014-0188

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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