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Crowdsourced R&D

InnoCentive Poses Million Dollar Challenge

— July 6, 2007 — Science
Scientist? Can measure disease progression in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease/ Motorneuron Disease) for US$ 1,000,000? Get on over to - the crowdsourcing R&D wonder.

The Low-Down on Crowdsourcing

The crowd knows best - is the mantra of the crowdsourcing revolution. And latest in the line of the "the crowd" are scientists, who can solve challenges posted at for monetary incentives!

Crowdsourcing is simply delegating one-to-many, the many being the members of the general public. The medium is the Internet. Members of the general public, through a (self-)screening process, often layered with an approval process, then qualify to work at a certain task delegated by one entity - usually a corporation or a "for impact" organization.

From Crowdsourced Journalism to Crowdsourced R&D

Previously on TrendHunter, we have covered the popular use of crowdsourcing: in journalism - with stories on NowPublic and Assignment Zero.

But crowdsourcing is entering behind traditionally closed doors - often sealed, cooled, and off-access: research & design labs and centers.
InnoCentive is a medium for crowdsourcing the R&D function, especially scientific challenges requiring innovative solutions. Companies, called "Seekers", post specific challenges in the life sciences and chemistry & applied sciences categories. Scientists, called "solvers" tackle a problem of their choice from the menu. Successfully solved challenges earn an award.

Currently, the winners of awards represent a global array with scientists from Russia, India, USA, Mexico, Argentina, and other parts of the world. This is truly a place for scientists sans frontiers.