Open-source disobedience: Rise of civic hacktivism in Taiwan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


This chapter discusses the recent civil society driven shift towards a more participatory system of governance in Taiwan. The social unrest that grew out of widespread frustration towards the secretive and elitist political culture led to weeks-long mass protests and the occupation of the parliament in 2014. The so-called Sunflower Movement was a watershed moment in Taiwanese politics that made the transformative agenda of hacktivist communities a key component of the ongoing public governance reform. This reform is characterised not only by the rapid digitalisation of Taiwanese public service but also by the deepening inclusion of the Taiwanese public in decision-making and using open-source civic technology. Governance reform carries on the spirit of the Sunflower Movement in a unique way as the developers included in this work previously applied their expertise in the Sunflower Movement protests, and this process is overseen by a power figure within this community, Audrey Tang, who in 2016 became the first digital minister of Taiwan. The chapter looks into the use of digital civil disobedience to understand what factors contributed to a positive societal impact, which in Taiwan can be seen as a transformative process that moves through stages of civic action, from empowerment to engagement to establishment.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCivil Disobedience from Nepal to Norway
Subtitle of host publicationTraditions, Extensions, and Civility
EditorsTapio Nykänen, Tiina Seppälä, Petri Koikkalainen
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-003-32049-4
ISBN (Print)978-1-032-01300-8 , 978-1-032-34086-9
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 2022
MoEC publication typeA3 Part of a book or another research book

Publication series

SeriesEthics, Human Rights, and Global Political Thought

Field of science

  • Sociology
  • International political science


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