Challenges

Types of challenges–ideation, software and apps, creative and tech–and the platforms and tools for success.

Jumpstart Your Government-Sponsored Initiative in a Tight Budget Climate: Try Crowdfunding

Nov 24, 2014 |

There are many ways to apply crowdfunding in the government space. This case study highlights the U.S. Department of State’s utilization of an online crowdfunding platform (CFP) to launch the Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund 2.0 (AEIF 2.0). Through this fundraising platform, exchange program alumni were able to work on innovative solutions to the world’s toughest Read »

CFPB’s IdeaBox: an Open-Source Internal Ideation Platform

Nov 3, 2014 |

IdeaBox is an application that helps an organization collect ideas, organize them, and solicit comments and votes on the ideas. Do you want to build an innovation program at your organization? Learn how you can leverage resources from IdeaBox, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s initiative to generate, incubate, and Read »

Results Report: Robots Created for Competitions to Help Ebola Response

Oct 27, 2014 |

Challenge competitions were recently highlighted as two potential solutions to help with the Ebola crisis responses. The first is a grand challenge launched Oct. 17, 2014, by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID): Ebola: A Grand Challenge for Development. The goal: To help health care workers on the front lines provide better care and stop Read »

Introducing the New Challenge.gov

Oct 2, 2014 |

Challenge.gov now hosts the full federal-wide listing of crowdsourcing competitions and has a back-end platform for agencies to create and manage their competitions. The site is managed and produced within GSA’s Office of Citizen Services and Innovative Technology (OCSIT) group. The main feature is a complete Read »

Advice from USAID on Prize Competition Communication Strategies

Sep 29, 2014 |

A well-developed communications plan is critical to the success of a challenge competition, but too often it is one item managers leave to consider at the end of prize design. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Jarah Meador shared the Desal Prize plan and results in the September 16 webinar, “Why Your Gov Read »

USGS Picture Puzzle: Do You See Changes to the Coast?

Sep 22, 2014 |

If you are a coastal resident, go to the beach, or are interested in digital volunteering, you can be a tremendous help in identifying and classifying changes that storms make to our coast after severe storms. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has launched iCoast, a Web application where you can view aerial photographs and help classify Read »

Helpful Hints: Writing RFPs So Real Businesses Can Respond

Sep 15, 2014 |

If you have a hand in contracts for crowdsourcing initiatives and challenge and prize competitions, here are some helpful hints for you. We’ve gathered this list from the expert businesses that provide competition services. Haven’t heard about that? See GSA Schedule 541-4G. Background: Over the last two years, competition providers and consultants have become more Read »

Cheaters, Thieves, Saboteurs & Other Nefarious Competitors

Sep 11, 2014 |

Challenge and prize competitions are competitive and not always squeaky clean. There are a few things we’ve noticed and noted in our experience over the last four years with challenge competitions run by federal agencies and studying others in the private sector. Read »

FTC Awards Five Winners from #DEFCON22 Robocall Honeypot Challenge

Aug 29, 2014 |

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had such great success with their first robocall challenge competition that the agency decided to take a different angle this year—targeting the skilled hackers at DEF CON 22, the annual defense conference in Las Vegas in early August. Five winners earned cash prizes and bragging rights for their creative technical Read »

Challenge, Contract or Grant – Which tool is right for the job?

Aug 14, 2014 |

Choosing between a contract, a grant, or a public prize competition to get solutions to the problems your agency faces is a difficult task. Each is a tool that has different qualities and each might be the best choice for varying situations. Sam Ortega, the manager of the Centennial Challenges program at NASA, spoke about Read »

“Deconstructing” Public Prize Competitions Can Result in Better Solutions

Jul 29, 2014 |

When faced with a big, daunting problem to solve, it’s human nature to try to tackle it by breaking it down into smaller parts and taking it “one step at a time.” The message from a recent DigitalGov University webinar on public prize competitions (AKA ‘challenges’) was that the government can often receive better solutions Read »

The API Briefing: RealTrack – How Hackathons Help Create Apps from APIs

Jul 16, 2014 |

Once a federal agency releases an API, there are several ways they can be used in apps. The most common method is through hackathons. Hackathons are where an agency or agencies present the API(s) and invite developers to create prototype apps. The apps Read »

The Trend is Diversity, in Challenge and Prize Competitions

Jul 15, 2014 |

The U.S. government has launched more than 45 challenge and prize competitions so far in Fiscal Year 2014. What trends are we seeing? Well, the trend is…diversity. That might sound like an oxymoron, but federal agencies are really putting themselves out there, asking the crowd to help tackle a wide array of problems. Until August 3rd, Read »

Deloitte Analysis: Craft of Incentive Prize Design

Jun 26, 2014 |

Federal challenge and prize competitions are in the news again. Our colleagues across government participated in research that resulted in a new report released June 19 from Deloitte University Press, The Craft of Prize Design: Lessons from the public sector. In the last five years, incentive prizes have transformed from an exotic open innovation tool to Read »

CDC’s “Predict the Flu Season Challenge” Could Keep You Well in the Future

Jun 24, 2014 |

The results of an innovative government prize competition might help you avoid the flu next season. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced the winner of the “Predict the Influenza Season Challenge”: Dr. Jeffrey Shaman of Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and his team submitted an Read »

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