The Market of Operating Systems - A political-cultural approach -

Essay by maretekUniversity, Master'sA, December 2002

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The paper is about applying Neil Fligstein's Theory of Fields (part of the political-cultural approach) to the market of operating systems. Two rivals are identified (Micrsoft and Linux). Patent rights, conception of control, emergence and crisis of the market are subsections discussed. The paper includes Title page, main body and bibliography with extensive references. it's about 12 pages (without title&bibliography)

The problem statement is: : Can the political-cultural approach predict the winning strategy for an actor in the market of operating systems?

The Market of Operating Systems

- A political-cultural approach -

Course: Economic Sociology

Academic Year 2202/2003

Date: Dec. 4, 02

Table of Contents

IntroductionPage 1

The PC Revolution - the Emergence of the fieldPage 2

Windows vs. Linux - the actors in the marketPage 4

Controlling The Core - conception of controlPage 5

The Open Source Dilemma - property rightsPage 8

Arpanet & Antitrust - governance structuresPage 8

Rules Of The Game - rules of exchangePage 10

Linux - a social movementPage 10

ConclusionPage 11

ReferencesPage 13


This paper is based on the findings and theories of Neil Fligstein's "The Architecture of Markets".

The book describes the so-called "theory of fields". In the author's view markets are social organisations, called fields. Actors in these fields are not - as opposed to classical economic theory - completely rational and utility or profit-maximizing actors. Fligstein describes them as socially and politically involved actors. The players or actors in a field can be categorized in three groups: incumbents and challengers, as well as the government. The incumbents are powerful players that individually can dominate the market. They interact and share opinions and also establish common understandings that make up the rules of the field. Incumbents try to avoid competition and flexible prices, as they regard those as a threat to...