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Week 6: Theme 3 – Crowdfunding Networks

Wednesday, October 8th

cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by Rocío Lara:

cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo by Rocío Lara:

What online architecture, tools and processes successfully help connect designers to other designers, end users, funders and investors? What differentiates these from other types of open innovation online groups and environments?

Once you have an idea, what next? What kind of support do you need? Ideas and encouragement from other designers, potential supporters and beneficiaries? Funds to pay for product development? Support as you refine your ideas? Communities and networks can help, particularly to bring diverse perspectives and critical thinking to your work. (Sometimes we are blind to great ideas and our own shortcomings!)

Teamwork activity:

Your team’s task is to find and critically review some crowdfunding sites and see if they might be relevant and useful to your NGO’s design challenge. Crowdfunding is used to secure funding.

Crowdsourcing? Identify what online architecture, tools and processes successfully help connect designers to other design insight, funders and investors? How would you use the site specifically for your NGO challenge?

Just a few examples include Kickstarter, Indiegogo, CircleUp, Catapult, tinyGive, AngelList. What other sites might you explore?

Let’s Hangout!

Personal Blog Reflection Prompt:

Now that you have explored crowdsourcing and crowdfunding, reflect on your sense of the usefulness of these options. It is easy to see the appeal of crowdfunding, but many designers have the inclination to “go it alone” and not seek the input of other designers or end users (as in crowdsourcing). What do you see as the pros and cons of crowdsourcing in design?


How Pebble And Other Product Phenomenons Killed It On Kickstarter (TechCrunch)

Crowdsourcing Primer (

Crowdfunding Trends (

Richard Bliss video on Crowdfunding best practices (, 23 minutes)

Crowdfunding for NGOs (Catapault)

Crowdsourcing Information (Change Assembly)

How Nonprofits Can Leverage Crowdfunding: Best Practices and Data – See more at: (Beth Kanter)

Protégeons une ruche par jour (French Crowdfunding site)

Learning objective: Students can describe how they would use crowdfunding (for monetary support). What are the strengths and weaknesses of crowdfunding for their NGO challenge? Give examples of potential crowdfunding options (at least 2 of each) and critically review the strengths and weaknesses of each, giving examples and reasons for your conclusions. Provide a final recommendation to your NGO on the use (or not) of crowdfunding and crowdsourcing.

Screening Room

Final Projects

Course Videos

  • Paul { Love it!! Maybe you should design a folding business card too! } – Oct 31, 11:20 AM
  • Tomas { Hey Ronja, I think you did a great job on the important roles! something we should definitly use in our final advice! Great job 🙂 } – Oct 31, 11:13 AM
  • Laura { I especially like the reflection on the teamwork! } – Oct 31, 9:55 AM
  • Laura { Love your reflection on the video making! Hey, I just bought that same tea! You won't die.... glad to see you lov'in it 🙂 } – Oct 31, 9:45 AM
  • Milena { aahhh we all really feel like this I think 😀 ... maybe the teams for tiny houses can establish our own Project Communities Village above... } – Oct 30, 11:24 PM
  • »»
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