Thursday, April 17, 2014

Use of crowdsourcing in Indian context

One of the successful examples of usage of  crowdsourcing innovations in the public sector, which is administered by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) in partnership with ChallengePostThe term crowdsourcing was coined by Jeff Howe and Mark Robinson in the June 2006 issue of Wired magazine. In crowdsourcing, the government or a company poses a problem or in other words a challenge online, a number of people respond to it, these ideas or solutions are judged transparently, the best ideas are given a prize and the entity which pose the problem utilizes the solution for its own gain.
The Department of School Education and Literacy in India is running a number of schemes, the major ones being Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and the Mid Day Meal Scheme. SSA provides for a variety of interventions for universal access and retention, bridging of gender and social category gaps in elementary education and improving the quality of learning. and the Mid Day Meal Scheme. We can use the crowdsourcing platform as has been used by the Department of Education (ED) in USA, which has posed six challenges offering both monetary and non-monetary incentives to get creative ideas and solutions to their problems. One of the challenges posed related to challenging schools, national service programs, higher education institutions, and community and faith-based organizations to work together to propel improvement of our lowest-performing schools. The rules were clearly laid down, and updates given as the challenge progressed. The submission gallery and names of the winners were clearly indicated.
Under the Mid Day Meal Scheme, every child in every Government and Government aided primary school is to be served a prepared Mid Day Meal with a minimum content of 700 calories of energy and 20 gram protein per day for a minimum of 200 days. we can use this platform to get information from the people on how to improve the Mid Day Meal scheme. We have been getting a number of feed-back from public on our Facebook page as well as tweets and retweets on our Twitter account but it becomes difficult to collate the responses. Crowdsourcing can help us in bridging this gap. Through crowdsourcing, we can also get feedback on the quality of food being served to the students. We can also invite suggestions on how to improve the nutritional value of the food being served and modify the menu to suit the local palate. This will also help in improving the confidence of the parents whose children are being given the food. This will help us in getting opinion from the experts as well as non-experts. We can, not only invite ideas but also get solutions on how to implement the ideas.  Similarly, we can use this platform to get solutions to simple as well as complex tasks facing us in other schemes also.

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