Crowdsourcing and Crowdfunding, home assignment

This week’s subject is Crowdsourcing and Crowd funding. I will give a short summary of my findings in the articles and then continue with the two examples I have used for this assignment, which are ‘My Starbucks Idea’ and ‘Britain in a Day’.

All articles were mainly focusing on crowdsourcing. In the first article of Afuah and Tucci, they give three options for an organization to solve a problem, which are crowdsourcing, solving the problem internal or designating an exclusive contractor to solve the problem. The most important reason why an agent would use crowdsourcing is when he doesn’t have the right knowledge to solve the problem. Other reasons are when the problem is easy to define and broadcasted to the crowd, when the final solution is easy to implement and because information technologies such as the internet are low cost, so the information is easily broadcasted to the crowd (Afuah & Tucci, 2012).

The second article of Jeppesen and Lakhani is more about the solver’s perspective. It gives two major processes that are involved by the problem solver, the first one is about being in different technical fields, so you don’t think in a box, and the second one is about social attributes, in this case gender where women are pushed out of the field.  An important conclusion they make is that problems aren’t fixed and given, but the solver can receive a problem different than the solution seeker, so he or she has a new perspective (Jeppsen & Lakhani, 2010).

The third article by Malone, Laubaucher and Dellarocas explains how crowdsourcing is being achieved. It is classified in four questions, what, who, why and how and makes a distinction between the creator and the decider (Dellarocas, Laubaucher & Malone, 2010).

The last article by Pisano and Verganti is about the type of collaboration a company can choose. It distinguishes four different types of collaboration, based on two factors. These factors are the type of governance, hierarchical or flat, and the participation degree, open or closed. The closed and hierarchical mode is the elite circle, the open and hierarchical mode is the innovation mall, the open and flat network is the innovation community and the closed and flat network is the consortium (Pisano & Verganti, 2008).

Then my examples. My first example was ‘My Starbucks Idea’. It’s a website from Starbucks where everybody can post ideas to improve the products, experience and involvement from Starbucks. When an idea is been valued well and the staff agrees they will implement the idea in the company. A strength of this example is that contributing is easy and fast, but you also don’t need any expertise. The last strength is that you can contribute to the community by giving your opinion on the submitted ideas. A weakness of this example is that because so many people participate, the chance that one of the staff members will see your idea is very small, even as the chance that your idea will be implemented.

My second example was ‘ Britain in a Day’. This is a project that launched in 2011 to create a movie about Britain. It’s a documentary that consists of short movies, made by all kind of different people. A strength here is that there is fewer contribution than with Starbucks, so you have a bigger chance that your video is chosen. The next strength is the same, you also don’t need expertise to participate, you just need to shoot you everyday life. The last strength is that the final product truly is of high quality. I base this on the fact that the movie is produced by Ridley Scot, who also produced ‘Black Hawk Down’. But there are also weaknesses, first of all, contributing takes quite some time because you need to make a short clip which could de-motivate people. And the last weakness is that your opinion doesn’t count. After submitting your clip you can’t contribute anything else to the project.


Denise Schut, 345828



Afuah, A.N., and Tucci, C.L. 2012. Crowdsourcing as a solution to distant search. The Academy of Management Review forthcoming.

Jeppesen, L.B., and Lakhani, K.R. 2010. Marginality and problem-solving effectiveness in broadcast search. Organization Science 21(5) 1016-1033

Malone, T.W., Laubacher, R., and Dellarocas, C. 2010. The collective intelligence genome. MIT Sloan Management Review 51(3) 21-31.

Pisano, G.P., and Verganti, R. 2008. Which kind of collaboration is right for you? Harvard Business Review 86(12) 78-86.


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