We just released an open data set for the open source community, researchers, and curious data wonks to study.

The data includes responses from 5,500 open source participants randomly sampled from over 3,800 projects on GitHub.com and over 500 sourced from communities that work on other platforms. Altogether, the data represents some of the most comprehensive and high-quality data on the open source community to date.

The Open Source Survey covers a broad set of topics, including:

  • What people value in the software they use and in open source projects
  • How and where people find and provide help
  • Privacy preferences and practices
  • Employer policies around using and contributing to open source
  • Negative experiences and their consequences
  • Personal backgrounds of community members

We hope you’ll use the data to inform decisions about community, tooling, and prioritization of work; understand the needs and experiences of different parts of the community; and do new and interesting research on a remarkable system of peer production that powers so much of modern life.

In the meantime, we’ve started using the findings to help us understand what makes a healthy community and how we can improve GitHub for maintainers, contributors, and end users.

plot of importance of various attributes to project use and contribution

Huge thanks to all of our collaborators in academia, industry, and the open source community who contributed topic ideas and questions, helped with translations, and took the survey. You can find the data, and an analysis of the key findings, at opensourcesurvey.org. Let us know how you use the data or write to us with questions or comments.