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Thursday, May 25, 2006

New Innovation Networks & Crowdsourcing

I recently covered on the theme of emerging innovation networks, wherein I brought out that in this age of contribution economy – a phenomenon that we are seeing ever since the Internet started to connect everyone to everyone else all the time, people from around the world can more easily contribute leading to exploding results - caused by the coming together of energy, ideas, and knowledge. Some of the more familiar examples of these collaborative efforts include blogs, open-source software, podcasts etc. We are also seeing customers leading the charge of innovation and the economist article on user led innovation exemplifies a new form of collaboration. The rise of online communities, together with the development of powerful and easy-to-use design tools, seems to be boosting the phenomenon, as well as bringing it to the attention of a wider audience, says Eric Von Hippel of MIT, author of the well known book Democratizing innovation. A recent issue of HBR has an excellent article on P&G’s new model off innovation.

Wired in a new article calls this phenomenon as "crowdsourcing". So sold on the idea, Jeff Howe even has a blog on the theme. Pointing to the fact that technological advances in everything from product design software to digital video cameras are breaking down the cost barriers that once separated amateurs from professionals. Hobbyists, part-timers, and dabblers suddenly have a market for their efforts, as smart companies in industries as disparate as pharmaceuticals and television discover ways to tap the latent talent of the crowd. The labor isn’t always free, but it costs a lot less than paying traditional employees. It’s not outsourcing; it’s crowdsourcing - The new pool of cheap labor: everyday people using their spare cycles to create content, solve problems, even do corporate R & D .

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
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