InnoCentive.com Essay

1857 Words 8 Pages
InnoCentive.com (IC) is an innovation marketplace found in 2000 that was spun off from Eli Lilly and received seed funding from the Company’s new business model incubator. Bingham, who spearheaded the push for IC, recognized that firms tended to address the science problems by using a limited number of scientists in a single knowledge domain. This local search for solving problems by using local expertise, experience, knowledge and tools that have been effective in the in-house group in the past often leads to either problems not being solved and lying dormant or problems being resolved with a suboptimal solution due to limited and constrained thinking. The possible alternative approaches are ignored or not perceived. So, the need to solve …show more content…
IC has created a global network of the Solvers to provide solutions to the various challenges of the Seeker companies in return for rewards and IC acts as an intermediary in bringing them together. The Solvers, 40% of whom hold PhDs, are from diverse fields and include private-sector participants, academics, students, consultants, and retirees.
IC uses the broadcast search model wherein the companies start by defining the problem that needs to be solved. Seekers receive help from IC’s scientific operations staff in creating and articulating their problem definition and Challenge statement that would enable Solvers from diverse fields to imagine it. The Challenge is then posted on IC’s website, along with the information about the cash award and submission deadline, which is broadcasted to its existing Solver base via e-mail. In the evaluation phase, solutions submitted by Solvers are screened by the IC’s scientific operations staff to ensure they met problem requirements before being sent to Seekers for assessment.
Two broad categories of Challenges with Intellectual Property (IP) implications were broadcasted: Reduction to Practice (RTP)problems where Solvers provided either original research data or detailed experimental results; and Paper/Theory Challenges where Solvers offered ‘papers’ submissions accompanied by a research proposal. Two other Challenge types were added by IC which were Ideation and

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