Designing the Future with Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing is changing traditional business models allowing new service markets to develop across international borders, and enabling a large number of providers and consumers to participate.

It’s also being used in social and public initiatives, like emergency response organisations in the case of the Haiti and Japan earthquakes, where a large number of people joined efforts for a common cause.

Evolution can help us understand how crowdsourcing may evolve, and provide us clues and strategies for designing its future use, and handling the challenges that may arise in our society.

That was the central theme of last Friday’s seminar, that I presented at ECCO, Evolution, Complexity and Cognition , a multidisciplinary research group at the VUB in Brussels.  I enjoyed the exchange we had at the end of the talk. Among others, Francis Heylighen mentioned his ideas to improve reputation systems using techniques as in the ‘Combining votes’ presented for quality management.

Scientists have a great opportunity to think ahead, influencing the organization of the markets, shaping the impact crowdsourcing will have in our society.

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