AMCIS 2012

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Virtual Communities - Services, Business Models, Crowd Creations

Minitrack: Virtual Communities
18th Americas Conference on Information Systems
August 9-12, 2012, Seattle, Washington, USA

Supported by Fachgruppe CSCW of Gesellschaft fuer Informatik


This Mini-Track builds on the success of the preceding AMCIS mini-tracks on Virtual Communities and Social Networking. During the last twelve years we have been gathering a community of researchers who are interested in the field of Virtual Communities, Social Networking, User-generated Content and related issues.

Virtual communities and social networking based on social networking sites, message boards, chat rooms, user groups and blogs have emerged as high activity domains on the Internet and more and more in the relam of mobile devices and mobile internet usage. Virtual communities and social networks are designed for a variety of purposes, ranging from Communities of Interest, Communities of Relationship (Facebook, etc.), Gaming Communities (e.g. in Wolrd of Warcraft, Second Life, etc.), and Communities of Transaction, Peer-to-Peer Communities, Innovation Communities (Dell Idea Storm, Starbucks Community, etc.) or Mobile Communities. Web 2.0 Mechanisms are also boosting the development of Virtual Communities and the role of user-generated content within Virtual Communities. The significance of these communities is evident by the impact they have on information generation and transmission, and socialization. For example, today, blogs are quickly becoming a primary source of information in a variety of domains. But also the generation of innovations or the sourcing of tasks is achieved through communities as the examples of oDesk or innocentive illustrate. The dynamic and interactive nature of these communities makes them very attractive for users and operators. An additional value offered by many of these communities is their ability to support socialization and offer an identity for the participants. While most virtual communities share these characteristics, it is also important to recognize that virtual communities are not homogeneous; they differ significantly based on the domain, purpose and benefits. Well-organized communities even expand their power across various channels and into the Offline world.

Within the field of information systems researchers are interested in studying interaction patterns, social structures and interactions, transaction processes, management aspects, business models, and design aspects of information systems and services for virtual communities. Community members interact via digital media and contribute value in the form of content, reviews, and recommendations. Related issues are trust, network effects, transaction costs and the design of services as well as the generation of innovations. "Wisdom of Crowds", "Collective Intelligence" and "Crowdsourcing" are important new terms describing mechanisms around user-generated content in Virtual Communities and Social Networks.

This mini-track welcomes empirical, conceptual and theoretical work. Despite the increasing popularity of virtual communities and social networking, several questions relating to virtual communities and social networking remain largely unexplored.

Possible Topics

We call for papers on all aspects of Virtual Communities. Possible topics include (but are not limited to)

  • Social, political and economic impact of Virtual Communities
  • Community models, platforms, services, and interactions, multi-channel communities
  • Management and organizational behaviour of communities
  • Community-related business models
  • Innovation generation and Virtual Communities (e.g. case studies on "wisdom of crowds", "collective intelligence", etc.)
  • User-generated content and customer collaboration in Virtual Communities
  • Peer-to-Peer or mobile services for Virtual Communities
  • Crowdsourcing through communities
  • Case studies and empirical studies, best practices and lessons learned
  • Motivation of participants in virtual communities
  • Benefits of participation in and competition among virtual communities
  • Information dispersion in virtual communities
  • Typologies and taxonomies of virtual communities
  • Evolution of and innovation in virtual communities
  • Gaming Communities

Important Dates

  • January 3, 2012: AIS Review System will begin accepting submissions for AMCIS 2012.
  • March 1, 2012 (11:59 PM Pacific time zone): Submission deadline.
  • April 6, 2012: Authors notified of paper acceptance decision.
  • April 25, 2012: Camera-Ready Papers due.


  • Submit your manuscript using the AMCIS2012 Paper Template, which can be find at
  • Submit your paper after January 3, 2012 using the Manuscript Central Submission Site at :
  • Log into to the Manuscript Central Submission Site after January 3, 2011 to see the list of Minitracks sessions that will be included in the conference, determine the Minitrack "Virtual Communities - Services, Business Models, Crowd Creations" for your submission
  • Papers will be peer-reviewed using a double-blind system

Mini-track Chair Information

Logo Kassel.jpg
  • Prof. Dr. Jan Marco Leimeister (Primary Contact)

Kassel University
Full Professor and Chair Person | Information Systems
Research Center for IS Design (ITeG) |
Nora-Platiel-Straße 4 | 34127 Kassel | Germany
tel: +49- 5 61-8 04 28 80 | fax: +49-5 61-8 04 37 08

  • Prof. Balaji Rajagopalan, Ph.D.

Oakland University
Associate Dean & Professor of Management Information Systems
Stinson Leadership Fellow
School of Business Administration
Rochester, MI 48309, U.S.A.
tel: 248-370-2707

Logo Kassel.jpg
  • Dr. Ulrich Bretschneider

Kassel University, Information Systems
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Nora-Platiel-Straße 4 | 34127 Kassel | Germany
tel: +49- 5 61-8 04 65 14 | fax: +49-5 61-8 04 37 08

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