Open innovation for social change — OECD’s global challenge

Open innovation is combining internal and external ideas to advance technology, product development, and so much more — including social good. Why crowdsource for social change? In today’s digital age, the Internet connects the world like never before. Utilizing this virtual environment to involve an unlimited audience brings an array of possibilities to tackle important challenges.

In light of Be-novative’s official launch happening for organizations and communities of all sizes, we want to share a social innovation story that happened with the Collective Creativity methodology and technology — breakthrough solutions of immense volume and speed ignite with the collaboration of minds.

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development organizes its Global Forum annually. The 2016 forum was dedicated to bringing about changes in the domain of global social inclusion. The project set out to offer opportunities of an equal say in the policymaking process to people who work in social inclusion from the ground. They achieved:

How they did it: An open innovation challenge was created

Emphasis was put on involving young, entrepreneurial and passionate people to co-create with researchers and experts on ways to shape our society creatively.

For the whole month before the event, OECD ran an open challenge titled “How would you change your society to make it more inclusive?” Experts and invitees collaborated openly with a fresh set of digital stakeholders worldwide, sharing ideas and formulating concepts that were to become direct inputs to the upcoming Forum — the results were to serve as a briefing for the speakers.

Through the power of crowdsourcing, 255 ideas were shared by collaborators from 20 countries. Based on the anonymous, democratic evaluation by all participants, 19 different tracks of policy intervention were identified, with many meaningful ones.

Ideas cross-pollinated and different voices heard

At the beginning of the process, initial expert intakes were quite generic, following regular policy directions. As more external contributors joined in on the platform, more suggestions emerged — the disconnect between the traditional policy mindset and what stakeholders on the ground really wanted, became clear.

Top ideas opened up unexpected paths such as talent management, entrepreneurship and community volunteering. The Collective Genius was unleashed. Not only did the new tracks identify topics in unprecedented directions, but the organization committed to take these concepts further as a part of their implementation plan.

The takeaway

To unleash disruptive ideas for transformational outcomes, all stakeholder voices must be equal. Empowered voices will formulate built on individual slices of expertise and genius, then collectively take shape to unforeseen solutions.

As our world becomes even more connected, so can our efforts for social change. Imagine a modern day Einstein sharing ideas with the youth from a developing country solving global issues together. That’s the type of world to drive forward!

Read more success stories like this in our free ebook

Be-novative is a Design Thinking and Innovation platform that helps organizations build breakthroughs collaboratively. @benovative

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