Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Computer Information Systems

First Advisor

Dr. Likoebe Maruping

Second Advisor

Dr. Arun Rai

Third Advisor

Dr. Ling Xue

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Rajiv Kohli


The emergence and increasing adoption of blockchain technologies give rise to a new form of digital platform-enabled ecosystems – decentralized ecosystems. In such ecosystems, multi-side participants collectively enjoy the decision-making rights instead of a central authority orchestrating the overall ecosystem. To understand decentralized ecosystems, this dissertation explores public blockchain ecosystems from two perspectives. First, from the perspective of value co-creation, the first section of this dissertation investigates how interdependent activities enable the functioning of such a non-central authority environment. Second, from the perspective of governance, the second section of this dissertation explores the mechanisms that are enacted to exercise decentralized governance and the impacts of these mechanisms. This dissertation presents a layer-subsystem structure and reveals dynamic and coevolving interactions within and between subsystems across layers. This dissertation also identifies three decision mechanisms and demonstrates the dynamic influences of the mechanisms on other activities at each layer and the interaction between mechanisms across layers.


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