A Theoretical Framework on the Link Between Motivation and Innovation in Hackers

Open Access
Zhang, Xue Wei
Area of Honors:
Information Sciences and Technology
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Katherine Loraine Hamilton, Thesis Supervisor
  • Rosalie Ocker, Honors Advisor
  • motivation
  • innovation
  • hackers
  • intrinsic motivation
  • extrinsic motivation
  • risk
  • socialization
The purpose of this paper was to develop a set of theoretical propositions surrounding the link between motivation and innovation. The amount of money spent on research and development in organizations suggests that companies are paying more attention to innovation because it is needed in order for them to gain market advantage and survive. The question that this raises is how to motivate employees to be more innovative. This paper proposes the use of hackers as a basis to understand how innovative solutions are developed. Through doing so, detailed arguments are presented on how varying levels of innovation can be derived from different types of hackers based on the level and type of motivators they possess. Areas for future research are provided, as are practical implications for organizations on how to facilitate develop similar levels of innovation as those of hackers.