Posted by Alex

OpenIDEO is a web platform for facilitating social innovation. It launched this past Monday and was developed by IDEO. It is designed as a collaborative creative space where everyone (designer or not) can come together and participate in the design process, through inspiration, concepting and evaluation. It is based around design challenges which start out as simple questions but tackle significant global challenges. Watch the video above to learn more. To really get a sense for the site, sign up on OpenIDEO and start adding inspirations!

The first challenge is for Jaime Oliver, the winner of this year’s TED prize and flag bearer of the Food Revolution in America. The goal is to find ways to raise awareness about the benefits of healthy and fresh food, especially for children. You can watch Jaime introduce the challenge in the video above.

I’ve been working as an intern at IDEO for the past 2 months and was able to participate in the first OpenIDEO internal challenge: to design the logo for the site. It was a really exciting process and I cannot wait to see these other challenges get put through the same paces. By breaking up the design process into these three easy phases, it ensures that important milestones are accomplished. I found the inspiration phase especially helpful, even for projects unrelated to the logo development.

I’ll be at IDEO through mid-September, when my master’s program begins again.

10 Comments Leave A Comment


eydryan says:

August 5, 2010 at 7:22 am

Pretty interesting idea for a platform, this approach would be an interesting direction for big companies. Just think of how awesome it would be if the next iPhone or whatever would have its features, technological solutions and implementations decided by the users.

Brand involvement would be huge, think of how attached you would feel to a phone that was created partly due to your own specifications!


Luc says:

August 5, 2010 at 2:32 pm

Great concept for good causes with little to no funding. However I cringe to think what this idea could become in the corporate world. As if purse strings aren’t tight enough for creative work this could just turn into a way getting work for free. We’re already seeing a denigration of the quality of work from crowd sourcing and now this. If you’ve ever looked at Wikipedia or Craigslist and vomited a little in your mouth then you know what I’m talking about. While you’re there thinking this is a terribly designed horrible experience the average person see nothing wrong with it. Now imagine a world where only fortune top 100 companies pay for creative and design is viewed as merely a hobby like crafts. Idiocracy here we come! Just sayin.


FargoCir. says:

August 9, 2010 at 4:24 am

Very cool idea. I would def. like to contribute. Although, I must agree with the comments above. This won’t work for corporations (otherwise it’s just a glorified CrowdSpring), but from what I understand, it’s not intended for them anyway. These are social projects, a.k.a. pro bono work. While many agencies love to take on these types of projects (creative freedom + sympathetic cause = awards), many will not, because it just doesn’t keep the studio warm at night. This seems like a nice way to ‘contribute’ to causes otherwise ignored by the designers that would rather keep turning a nice profit for their hard work. I’m anxious to see where this goes. Thanks for the post Alex.