The Challenge


How might we increase social impact with OpenIDEO over the next year?

Challenge Brief

OpenIDEO has turned 1! It’s been an incredible year of connecting and collaborating for social innovation and we are so amazed by the flourishing community that has joined us since our launch. To celebrate our first anniversary, we’re asking you to explore together and identify ways that we can increase our individual and collective social impact over the course of the next year.
Over the past year, our OpenIDEO community – over 17,000 members from more than 170 countries – has proven to be boldly and passionately optimistic about social change. Together we’ve explored a variety of pressing social issues, including maternal health, affordable education, local food and cancer, and collaboratively developed innovative ideas to meet those challenges.
Our community has collected over 3,100 Inspirations and generated over 2,200 Concepts to improve the world we live in. Since the launch of our platform last year, we have become even more committed to the idea that OpenIDEO can be a springboard for each of us to be part of meaningful social impact. We've been thinking about the pathways to impact – and are keen for you to join us in exploring them further.
With that in mind, the purpose of this challenge is two-fold:
1. To celebrate our collective learnings and reflect on the work we’ve done so far to make our global communities brighter, healthier and happier.
2. To consider how together we can create even more social impact – individually, in our local neighborhoods and around the world – through our connection on the OpenIDEO platform and the vibrant virtual community we’re forming.
The OpenIDEO Team is excited that our own community can help us envision ways to achieve impact – not just through our sponsors but also ourselves in our own local communities. Let’s use our collaborative power to imagine how to extend real world action around our challenges. 
We're eager for you to join us in kicking up our heels in celebration, reflecting back on the work we have done over the past year, and turning our attention toward making even greater social impact in the year ahead. 
Look back on tips the community used to create their ideas in this challenge.


Community & Social Media Manager:

  Meena Kadri

Our Challenge Administrators

Check out how our global community is contributing – and the impact so far!

Comment on the Brief

If you'd like to leave us your thoughts on this brief, tell us what you think. Be sure to also check out the challenge

Join the conversation and post a comment.

Ibrahim Hussein

April 21, 2014, 12:06PM
I am new to this forum but I am grateful to be part of social enterprise discussions. I recently had a chat with a friend of mine who has been running a non for profit cafe in Sydney for over 10 years, aimed at providing a second lounge for people who are typically marginalised, although he is very reluctant to use the term 'marginalised' because of it's implied label. Anyway, I was very moved with all the stories he shared with me in terms how simple things and gestures can change someone's life. Interestingly when I asked him to quantify the social impact of his business over the years, naturally he was unable to do so, because, he argued, how do you quantify someone's life journey? Someone at a precipice and their life who changes their life path for the better simply because they bought a cup of coffee, and another fellow human being listened to their story and told them everything is going to be OK. I suppose the moral of my long story is how can we get organisations that provide funding and grants to support enterprises that are not able to provide SROI breakdown in numbers.

Fei Xin

April 17, 2014, 04:31AM
I am really enjoy participating in the discussion on openIDEO. It is a excellent website. I also do not have any work experience. Through openIDEO, I know a lot of social issues which need to be addressed immediately, and which one is an issue of long-term considerations. It allows more amd more people to participate, in order to share ideas and discuss views. Good ideas are benefit for the development of society, and can create a better future life.

chang liu

March 05, 2014, 00:39AM
Happy birthday! I would like to give you all of my support forever~!~

Congmin Liang

February 26, 2014, 01:56AM
Just like Gabrielle Davelaar said, "The ideas that are generated could be part of a greater goal. There is a project that is called Masterpeace which is an initiative to involve people in building peace. openIDEO could enlarge the social impact of creating peace with new ideas." I am here because one of my Master class require us to make commons and share ideas over here, and I think it is a great idea that to let more and more people to get into the openideo to share what they think. It is a nice place to learn from others!

mengyuan chen

February 21, 2014, 04:26AM
I am new here. But i really like OpenIdeo. This is awesome tool for me to browse my horizon. As one of a students, I do not have any working experience, however, OpenIdeo would allow me to see more latest and updated issues that existing in the society. I just love this tool.

Kushal Agrawal

January 18, 2012, 13:43PM
Today is the world of non-traditional and collaborative marketing, OpenIdeo is a powerful tool which would be easily marketed via collaborative marketing. Making a "Youtube exclusive Ideo Channel" and launching videos of new products and concepts listed under one Big roof of Youtube. Let all New and Innovative ideas posted by members of OpenIDEO, be shown in a video format, these videos might attract many number of people to watch and publicize OpenIDEO. Exceptionally few videos might become a point of study, getting millions of views over the web.

Sidhika Sooklal

December 10, 2011, 19:41PM
Another idea would also be to get young minds together. Places such as universities are breeding grounds for original thought and messages. They are also places which can make a service become recognized as cool and grow exponentially. Facebook is proof of that. Perhaps the solution lies in getting the message out to universities and making more young talented minds aware and become ambassadors for you!

Camilla Vachet

January 31, 2012, 22:10PM
I am a student I would love to see more meanigful questions raised during our education. We all want to contribute and allowing us to think in new paths will certainly help us become aware of today's and tomorrow's challenges. So many committees and organisations work for free at universities because they believe in what they are offering. Believing in change and social impact shouldn't be so difficult to communicate.

Sidhika Sooklal

December 10, 2011, 19:38PM
I agree with Emi, OpenIDEO is brilliant. I do wish more people knew about it. The sustainability conference is one idea to get the message out there, also perhaps spread the message virally as much as possible. Design blogs inspire designers on a daily basis and definitely up the ante when it comes to getting things out there. There's also various design conferences around the world. IDEO needs some sort of creation of OpenIDEO ambassadors.


November 30, 2011, 14:32PM
Hi! Do you know the global conference about sustainability next year for 10 years again. This must be great opportunity to join for OpenIDEO team.

I would like to create the campaign pages on OpenIDEO.

Have a lovely day!

Pradeep Mehta

November 27, 2011, 04:16AM
Open IDEO can nominate its Alumni in different countries as IDEO Ambassadors that can lead in their country and popularize IDEO. At the same time actions as per IDEO's challenge can be taken.
NGO's from different countries could be linked with IDEO to make an impact in different countries.
Development jobs can be posted on IDEO under career section that will make IDEO more popular where people will get solutions under one portal.

Jake Richardson

November 22, 2011, 01:53AM
Visually show the links that all these Challenges have to a human population that is 7 billion and growing. The Challenges will continue growing with the increasing population as more land is consumed, species lost, new diseases emerge, water is exhausted, conflict over natural resources continues. Nearly all of our big problems are tied to the size of our human population and it isnt' talked about enough.

Gabrielle Davelaar

November 15, 2011, 10:28AM
The ideas that are generated could be part of a greater goal. There is a project that is called Masterpeace which is an initiative to involve people in building peace. openIDEO could enlarge the social impact of creating peace with new ideas.

Ed Matesevac

September 22, 2011, 14:40PM
I think we are on the verge of entering into an era of rapid expansion of collaborative consumption as documented in this TED talk and on this web site . I appreciate how Openideo is tapping into this meme by providing a platform for people to share not just physical objects but their cognitive abilities to positively impact community.

Kevin O'Neill

September 06, 2011, 10:03AM
I applaud all those who go on the registry because they want to help others but if we want more people to go on the registry what about a cash incentive? Treat it like a lottery, if your bone marrow is matched and harvested you get a financial reward?

Paul Reader

September 03, 2011, 12:40PM
Having only been involved with OpenIDEO for a few days this is the only challenge I have taken part in (or indeed have had time to look at closely). It reminds me of challenges for "continuous improvement" undertaken in my former workplace. To that end at least one such challenge should be instigated annually. I notice that the concepts fall naturally into two categories: first those proposing changes or enhancements to access to OpenIDEO (either the web interface or the platform); and second those proposing other aspects of connectivity both within the OpenIDEO community and with the world at large.

Jose Muñoz

September 03, 2011, 09:37AM
I think it could boost generation of ideas, concepts and so on, having video conference sesions for each challenge, so we have more dynamic and realtime interaction and colaboration in the projects .

Patricio M. Hidalgo

September 03, 2011, 11:30AM
Yes! we are witnessing a new year taking off @openIDEO: the interaction is vivid and IT facilitates easily.

Paul Reader

September 03, 2011, 12:58PM
A really good suggestion for those with access to the technology. For those (like me) who have limited capacity (in my case I am constrained by a dial-up internet connection) a summary of conference proceedings and conclusions would be appreciated. Although I may be the sole person so constrained if one of the aims of OpenIDEO is inclusivity catering for the less technologically endowed will become increasingly important. This may be an appropriate point at which to mention my frustration with access to the video clip on evaluation which took the best part of an hour to load for viewing on my system - I baulked completely at downloading the 54mb file from Vimeo (by comparison I downloaded TED low resolution mp4 files quite quickly with quite acceptable quality). Please consider the lower end of the technological scale too when incorporating items in the OpenIDEO interface.

Haiyan Zhang

September 06, 2011, 19:33PM
Hi Jose, Patricio, Paul. Thanks for your great ideas. Our thoughts on this idea of real-time collaboration is that right now we want to create an innovation process and community hub to tackle challenges. There are many tools for active real-time collaboration out there that instead of building our own or recommending a specific one, we could provide ways to users to connect and use these tools outside the platform, then share the outcomes on the platform.

Perhaps we could provide a place for users to recommend tools and to share their contact details. Let us know if you have any tools you are really fond of...

Patricio M. Hidalgo

September 06, 2011, 22:20PM
Hi Haiyan, Better stated that you have, none. Will look into leaner, inclusive, complementary tools that try to address the online experience....

Paul Reader

September 07, 2011, 03:32AM
Hi Haiyan, Patricio et al - I would be keen to trial Collanos ( ) It is not realtime but I dont see problems with that since my timezone is about 10 hours different from east coast USA. It uses a desktop client and syncs and updates files stored at either end. On the other hand it could be used in conjunction with web-based storage for multi-media.
Although HD video is nice in the context of collaboration (and perhaps OpenIDEO generally) the message is more important than the medium. Similarly drawing ability or otherwise is not important as long as a diagram/picture shows what is needed. The ability to collaborate with others more skilled than ourselves will help to enhance and polish contributions.
If this collaborative approach would play havoc with the DQ scoring I'm sure something can be worked, afterall I see Ideators are sometimes awarded bonus DQ points for various contributions. In addition I hope you will begin to get ideas (including concepts) from local chapters, collaboratories, cafes etc. as a result of real world collaborations.

Carlos Perez

August 29, 2011, 20:51PM
Hi, it just crossed my mind, I would like to see a linked in link in profile pages. Helping community members to collaborate with each other in their own industries or picking a new contractor or supplier. I would prefer to work alongside people who are community members.

If there is someone who already posted this proposition can someone provide a link so I can Applaud really hard? ; )

Meena Kadri

August 29, 2011, 21:21PM
Great idea! I haven't seen this raised elsewhere so I'm Applauding really hard right here!

Paul Reader

September 03, 2011, 13:34PM
I do applaud this idea, despite my reservations about LinkedIn (I am a member). If you look closely at the diagram accompanying the concept you will see Linkedin included.

Matthew Collins

August 22, 2011, 23:23PM
Hi all, I've been out of touch with OpenIDEO since the last challenge, but I hope to submit at least one concept for this one. My focus is to further enable participants to be more intimately involved in the challenges. I also like the thought of connecting with OpenIDEO participants in my local area.

Does anyone have suggestions for existing concepts for me to check out before submitting ideas?

Meena Kadri

August 23, 2011, 01:49AM
Great to have you back, Matthew. The easiest way would be to hit the Applause filter on the Concepting page and see which Concepts are getting the most support. We're looking forward to seeing what you come up with as we continue our journey to increase social impact!

Matthew Collins

August 24, 2011, 23:13PM
Thanks for the advice. Couldn't come up with anything insightful enough in time... maybe I'll just start with the applause phase.

Paul Reader

September 03, 2011, 13:46PM
Having only joined in time to applaud I am looking forward to at least having the opportunity to contribute to earlier phases for subsequent challenges. Looking at the range of concepts developed for this challenge I was struck by the broad similarity of many concepts. As a result I wondered if some challenges might benefit from a collaboration and consolidation phase preceding applause.

Haiyan Zhang

September 06, 2011, 19:29PM
Hi Paul, thanks for your input! We're looking at ways to cross-polinate inspirations and concepts across challenges. The issue is just about making sure the users who submitted them originally get the credit they deserve as well as the user who sees an opportunity for cross-polination.

Paul Reader

September 07, 2011, 01:58AM
Thanks Haiyan - I guess I also meant within challenges in the sense that local chapters, cafes, library partnerships and a few others all converge on bringing groups of Ideators (small or large) together for personal as well as virtual contact in order to extend the community for both local and universal impact.
From my own point of view I am happy for anyone to incorporate and/or modify any ideas I have. If I think they are sufficiently important to pursue I will pursue them.
The important thing is the outcome for challenge purposes.
If I think someone else's idea is worth reraising or pursuing I would first contact the originator, acknowledge it, bring it forward again and pursue it.

That is why I suggested an annual challenge (similar to How might we increase social impact with OpenIDEO over the next year?) as a means of continuous improvement to complement the efforts of the OpenIDEO team.

Troie Pan

August 11, 2011, 04:27AM
How to join the challenge?

Arjan Tupan

August 11, 2011, 07:18AM
That's quite simple, actually. Click on Inspiration or (later today) Concepting in the bar on the top part of the page, read contributions from others, applaud, comment and be inspired to add you contribution through the buttons on the side. Good luck, and welcome to the party :)

William Ten Eick

August 15, 2011, 21:31PM
Whooo comes up with the challengess??


August 18, 2011, 17:36PM
Hi William, great question! The short answer is that OpenIDEO works closely with businesses, organizations, universities and other institutions to develop challenges for the community to tackle. All of our challenges are sponsored by organizations who are committed to tackling a globally-relevant social or environmental issue and who have the resources to help realise some or all of the winning concepts after a challenge ends. Hope this is helpful – and hope to see you in our Impact Challenge and others!
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