Reorganization and Participation in Decentralized Platform Ecosystems: Evidence from Blockchain Forking

Ying-Ying Hsieh, Jonas Valbjørn Andersen

Research output: Conference Article in Proceeding or Book/Report chapterArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Like any organizational system, platform
ecosystems reorganize to update its alignment with the
internal and external environments. However, unlike
reorganizations of centrally managed platforms
performed by the owners, reorganizations of
decentralized platforms ecosystems do not rely on
formal authority. Instead, the network self-reorganizes
to renew the structure, rules, and information to evolve.
Little is known about how self-reorganizations influence
the participation of various types of networks. In this
study, we investigate nine reorganization events on
Ethereum, a blockchain-based decentralized smart
contract platform, to unpack how self-reorganization
related to hard forking influence participation in the
development, validation, transaction, and
complementor networks. We find that, while
participation increases across all networks show a
small increase after hard forking events, more complex
dynamics are at play within each network that builds on
delicate trade-offs between participation structure,
configuration, and incentives. Our findings have
implications for blockchain research as well as for
start-ups building decentralized applications on top of
decentralized smart contract platforms.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 56th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences
Publication date2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Platform ecosystems
  • Decentralized platforms
  • Self-reorganization
  • Hard forking
  • Blockchain participation


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