Crowdsource innovation!

If you decide to crowdsource input, for example innovative ideas, from citizens (both users and non-users) on Public Transport, the implementation of a crowdsourcing campaign would might be right up your alley!

Apart from the already mentioned benefits, a crowdsourcing platform is a living and breathing Public Transport innovation marketplace, where new ideas can arise and the interested parties can inspire each other.

For a successful implementation of a crowdsourcing campaign, follow the following steps:

Step 1. Description of the campaign (challenge) - Identify the challenge that you want to address with the assistance of the crowd. This should be a meaningful, short, clear and easy-to-understand description.

Step 2. Definition of the campaign type and the rules of the campaign - Set out clear rules for users. Some useful questions that you should answer in advance are:

  • Is the campaign addressed to PTA’s/PTO’s employees (internal campaign) or to its customers and public in general (external campaign)?
  • What type of crowdsourcing campaign will it be (e.g. idea generation, product development, crowdfunding etc.)?
  • Is this a competitive crowdsourcing initiative (contest version) that is used to gather new innovative ideas, or is it a collaborative crowdsourcing initiative that is partially used to allow reviews, ratings, etc. on the submitted ideas?
  • What is the starting and the ending time of the campaign?
  • How will the crowdsourcing input be evaluated? Will the evaluation and the selection of the winners be performed by an internal team of experts, or by the crowd itself through voting?
  • Will there be any prize for the winning idea (in case of a competitive campaign), and what are the incentives for users to participate?

Step 3. Releasing the campaign online - Develop an appropriate digital platform and release it online. You can take inspiration from the CIPTEC crowdsourcing platform.

Step 4. Advertising the campaign - Promote your campaign by using both online (e.g. websites, social media, newsletters, search engine optimisation techniques) and offline (e.g. Newspapers, TV and Radio channels, brochures) advertising in order to gather as many contributors as possible.

Step 5. Gathering contributions - During this step, the campaign is running and the registered users can participate in the crowdsourcing initiative by contributing with content.

Step 6. Evaluation process and rewards - Update the platform with content about the evaluation process (e.g. how it works, who will participate in the experts’ committee (if there is one), when the results will be announced, etc.).

See CIPTEC crowdsourcing experience in the relevant CIPTEC Deliverables (D3.1, D3.2, D3.4, D3.5)


  • The online platform should have a nice professional design and meet the defined requirements
  • Find a “catchy” and clever name for the campaign that will be used for marketing purposes
  • Create a video outlining all the relevant details: video clips convey a better idea of the challenge and capture users’ attention more easily
  • The rules for participation in the campaign should be clear and easily understandable by all
  • If you are going to organise a contest based crowdsourcing initiative, you should think about providing incentives to the users
  • Competitive and collaborative crowdsourcing campaign types are not necessarily mutually exclusive, so they could be combined
  • The evaluation process could be based both on users’ and experts’ assessments
  • Dedicated administration supporting users in any problem they may encounter is needed
  • In order to ensure citizens’ engagement, you should organise special events aimed at providing technical support to people of specific groups (e.g. the elderly) in submitting their ideas
  • Allocate some funds for the real implementation of some of the ideas suggested by the crowd in order to build trust with the citizens of your city and boost participation
  • Bear in mind that a great deal of time effort is needed for running such a crowdsourcing initiative (design, platform’s development, promotion/advertising, administration, evaluation)

If you are interested in running a crowdsourcing campaign, contact CIPTEC and take advantage of the project’s platform ( and experience (