Crowdsourcing and the “gig economy” are transforming the nature of work and organizations. Uber, for instance, creates $50B per annum in value with the potential to increase this value to trillions of dollars. Both the demand and the supply side of gig platforms need to make crowdsourcing more ubiquitous and even “boring” to fully unlock this value. The Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard hosted the Crowd Academy Platforms Summit in San Francisco to tackle core issues with 43 people representing 18 industry leading companies. This report summarizes and recaps the key points from this discussion.
Jin H. Paik is the Program Director and Senior Researcher at the Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard (LISH). In his role, he serves as the lab’s general manager. He works to develop the lab’s strategic vision, as well as to direct project and research activities. He oversees the development of open innovation projects through partnerships with NASA, Harvard Medical School, federal government agencies, academic and research institutions, and industry leaders. He advises organizations on innovation strategies with a focus on starting and scaling open innovation practices. He has worked extensively on programs that focus on data science, development and use of artificial intelligence, technology commercialization, and the future of work. Prior to joining the LISH team, he worked at the Harvard Kennedy School and Mathematica Policy Research. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree from Harvard University.
Chetan Krishna is a research associate focusing on the processes of science and technology commercialization and the adoption of AI/ML/NLP in businesses. His interests lie broadly in innovation and energy/sustainability. Chetan received his master’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Technology Policy Program and received a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
Steven is currently serving as an Assistant Director of Research Management at the Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard. Previously, he was the Director of Growth and Research at Viva + Impulse Creative Co., a digital advertising agency, where he was responsible for the growth and direction of the agency. Prior to his work with Viva +Impulse, Steven served as the Communications Director and Cofounder of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services IDEA Lab where he worked with startups and internal government teams to change the way government and health care solved some of the nation’s biggest problems.
Prior to the IDEA Lab, Steven worked at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, as a Senior Advisor to the Administrator after serving in Governor Bill Richardson’s Administration as the Legislative Liaison for the New Mexico Human Services Department.
Karim R. Lakhani is a Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School and one of the Principal Investigators of the Laboratory for Innovation Science at Harvard (LISH). He specializes in the management of technological innovation in firms and communities. His research is on distributed innovation systems and the movement of innovative activity to the edges of organizations and into communities. He has extensively studied the emergence of open source software communities and their unique innovation and product development strategies. He has also investigated how critical knowledge from outside of the organization can be accessed through innovation contests. Currently, Professor Lakhani is investigating incentives and behavior in contests and the mechanisms behind scientific team formation through field experiments on the Topcoder platform and the Harvard Medical School.