Welcome to the Open and User Innovation Society!

Origins of OUI

The OUI Society was formed about 15 years ago, by 10 academic colleagues. All of us shared an interest in the open source and user distributed innovation activities that were then emerging – but we were scattered in different fields. We decided that we needed a common annual conference – a common intellectual home – to help us share our learnings. Eventually, we thought, our shared interdisciplinary research focus and work would create the core of a new field, and/or it would merge back into and enrich existing fields. Either way, it was clear that, to build our learnings effectively, we needed a place of our own.

Present form and function of OUI

The sole official activity of the OUI Society to date consists of a major academic conference each Summer. Other OUI activities build upon the connections made and ideas exchanged at the Summer meetings, and are generally local and informal.

The meeting host, the location, and the exact meeting dates change from year-to-year, and are announced annually. These days, about 200-300 academics and PhD students attend each annual OUI meeting. About 50% of these individuals are regular attendees, and about 50% are newbies. We warmly welcome both, as we build our OUI research and the OUI field together.