Has Crowdsourcing Become A Mainstream Innovation Tool?

(This post originally appeared on Innovation Excellence)

Given the level of excitement the concept of Open Innovation has caused in the media in recent years, one would assume that this approach has become a common tool used by organizations to achieve their innovation goals.

Indeed, last year’s study by Henry Chesbrough and Sabine Brunswicker showed that large companies in Europe and the U.S. were increasingly using open innovation in their business practices. However, when asked which specific open innovation tools they employed the most, the respondents chose customer co-creation, informal networking and university grants. At the same time, crowdsourcing and working with open innovation services providers (OISP) were rated lowest in importance.

This is somewhat sobering news. Although undeniably “open” in their nature, co-creation, informal networking and academic collaborations are not exactly new approaches: companies have been using them for years. It is crowdsourcing that has been hailed as a hallmark…

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