Open Innovation: Open Innovation is an umbrella term that refers to participatory methods and techniques for obtaining ideas, expertise, and resources from the public, organizations, and experts in an open way.
Citizen Science: The public participates voluntarily in the scientific process, addressing real-world problems in ways that may include formulating research questions, conducting scientific experiments, collecting and analyzing data, interpreting results, making new discoveries, developing technologies and applications, and solving complex problems.
Crowdsourcing: An open call for voluntary assistance from a large group of individuals for gathering ideas, observations, or services. Many crowdsourced efforts use rigorous procedures to ensure data quality, such as checking for agreement from multiple volunteers or developing verification protocols.
Challenges & Prize Competitions: An approach to federal contracting that promotes innovation by offering a monetary or non-monetary reward upon completing a specific objective or task. Prize competitions are a proven way to increase innovation for the public, private, and philanthropic sectors. Incentivized, open competition is a standard tool in many agencies’ toolboxes for delivering more cost-effective and efficient services, and advancing agencies’ core missions.
Civic Hacking: A creative and collaborative approach to problem solving. Hackathons are gatherings that encourage meaningful engagement between technology developers, designers, data scientists, subject matter experts, civil society, and other relevant stakeholders, making them great places to understand our users, build volunteer community and capacity, as well as recruit new talent. The goal is to produce quick and creative solutions, learn new tools and skills, and meet new people.
The purpose of Open Innovation Community is to:
- Promote an understanding of the role and potential benefits of open innovation efforts (crowdsourcing, citizen science, civic hacking, challenges & prize competitions) for USGS as well as across the DOI bureaus and offices;
- Facilitate and enhance connections between the USGS and the larger federal and public Citizen Science and Open Innovation communities;
- Provide access to information and tools to support the proper, effective, and creative use of these open innovation efforts within the USGS and across DOI bureaus;
- Engage the public to foster and improve the public's scientific literacy and use of USGS and DOI products and services.