Crowdsourcing and Individual Creativity Over Time: The Detrimental Effects of Past Success
36 Pages Posted: 30 Aug 2010
Date Written: August 26, 2010
Several organizations have developed online crowdsourcing platforms that tap into the “wisdom” (creative ideas for new products and services) of a large “crowd” of non-experts (consumers). The crowdsourcing model seems very attractive because consumers are intrinsically motivated to freely contribute their creative ideas, but little is known about the effectiveness of these approaches. Two years of panel data from Dell’s IdeaStorm system are used to empirically explore the relationship between individual creativity, productivity, and past success. Estimation results from random effects and conditional fixed effects logit models reveal that individual creativity is positively related to current effort, but negatively related to past success. Thus, productive individuals are likely to have creative ideas, but are unlikely to repeat their early creative success once their ideas are recognized as being creative. These findings highlight some of the difficulties in maintaining an adequate supply of creative ideas from existing crowdsourcing applications, and emphasize the need for a greater understanding of the reward and feedback mechanisms in these systems.
Keywords: Innovation, Creativity, Intrinsic Motivation, Marketing
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