The University of Oxford has been using crowdsourcing to identify good ideas that can be realised as digital projects. The IT Innovation Challenges scheme has been running since 2014 and funded over 60 projects covering a range of areas and approaches, using both existing and emerging technologies to bring benefit to the University, its students and staff.
The scheme is using an open innovation model for its calls, inviting members of the University to share their ideas through a dedicated platform, where others can comment and vote and offer suggestions for how the idea could be realised. A cross-University panel evaluate the ideas and draw up a shortlist of ideas whose creators are invited to develop and pitch a project proposal. Funding is allocated to the most promising proposals.
Currently the scheme is looking for innovative ideas and creative students for digital projects running over the summer. The ‘Summer of Innovation’ initiative will be offering support to a number of projects in the form of funded internships, where students work with in-house developers to realise the projects.
The IT Innovation Challenges scheme is currently only open to members of the University, but it is possible that similar scheme will be inviting external collaborators too.
Images: Robbie Brock (CC BY-NC-SA)