IDEO has developed yet another powerful solution to help social entrepreneurs crowdsource more effective, innovative solutions for solving social problems around the globe. We’ve already covered how IDEO’s Human-Centered Design (HCD) Toolkit empowers social entrepreneurs to collaborate and create better solutions. Now social entrepreneurs can get even more inspiration and wisdom from their peers through the IDEO HCD Connect system online.
Crowdsourcing Social Entrepreneurial Ideas through HCD Connect
The HCD Connect brings together projects and the people who create them and stimulates collaboration and conversation to help encourage community that generates new ideas, opportunities, and solutions. This online platform is where participants share their stories and help each other implement better human-centered designs.
Launched in April 2012 with help from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, HCD Connect participants get involved by answering some general questions about how they’ve used the HCD process for their project and share their stories. They can then interact with other participants, ask questions of the community, and so on. In some areas, participants are also able to apply for micro-grants for help with implementing their solutions.
At the time of writing, some of the questions being asked of the community include where to find speakers on sustainable design, how to update farmers on agricultural techniques using their mobile phones, developing RFID or QR codes for use in various programs, and how to empower youth to preserve their culture and environment.
Using the online tools, participants can browse other people’s projects by region or by focus, which allows them to zero in on information that would be most useful to them. Focus areas include things such as agriculture, community development, education, energy, environment, financial services, gender equity, health, and water. And the regions cover Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Europe, India, North America, Oceania, and South America.