OpenIDEO: Collaborative Design for Social Good
By Maria Popova
We’re big fans of design thinking pioneer IDEO here at Brain Pickings. We’re also fans of cross-disciplinary collaboration, so we’re thrilled to see IDEO’s latest venture, OpenIDEO — a highly collaborative, visually-driven open online tool for building an actionable creative process aimed at design for social good.
OpenIDEO is a global community that will draw on your optimism, inspiration, ideas and opinions to solve problems together for the collective social good.
OpenIDEO invites people to tackle big issues by sharing expertise and insight — be that in the form of creative sketches, business acumen, inspirational photos and images, or snippets of code — essentially building a patchwork of collective intelligence about the pressing problem being addressed. The community provides feedback every step of the way, and IDEO offers guidance by framing the challenge, prototyping and kindling the conversation.
One particularly interesting concept is the introduction of a metric for creative contribution. Dubbed your ‘Design Quotient,’ or DQ, it reflects your participation in the three development phases of problem-solving — inspiration, conception and evaluation — as well as the common thread of collaboration that binds all three, helping you you better understand where your unique strengths lie across these different domains.
Barely a week old, OpenIDEO is already working with TED Prize winner Jamie Oliver, harnessing the problem-solving power of the community to help him ignite the Food Revolution he envisioned. Another challenge is sponsored by Enterprising Schools, aiming to increase the access to low-cost learning tools for affordable private schools in India and, eventually, around the world. Upcoming challenges will feature projects backed by Sony and WWF.
While a number of idea-generation crowdsourcing platforms have emerged over the past couple of years, what makes OpenIDEO intriguing is that it adds an element of expert guidance, essentially combining two of the most powerful forces of creativity — collective intelligence and curatorial vision. We can’t wait to see what it blossoms into.
Published August 3, 2010