GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is a UK-based global pharmaceutical/ healthcare company, with over 100,000 employees. The company strives on innovations. However, despite
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is a UK-based global pharmaceutical/ healthcare company, with over 100,000 employees. The company strives on innovations.
However, despite its mega size and global presence, it has problems that it needs outside expertise to solve.
The company researched a potentially disruptive technology that promised cure to difficult diseases.
The company wanted to discover which disease to use as a test bed for the potential innovative treatments. It was necessary to make sure that the selection will cover a disease where every aspect of the new treatment is checked. Despite its large size, GSK wanted some outside expertise to support and check the in-house research efforts.
GSK decided to crowdsource the problem solution to experts, using InnoCentive Corp. (Innocentive.
com). InnoCentive is a US-based global crowdsourcing company. The company receives challenges from client companies like GSK. These challenges are posted for solvers to see with the potential rewards, in InnoCentive's Challenge Center. Solvers that think they want to participate follow instructions and may sign an agreement. The solutions submitted are evaluated, and awards are provided to the winners.
The GSK Situation
In total, 397 solvers engaged in this challenge, even the reward was minimal ($5000). The solvers resided in several countries. The solvers submitted 66 proposed solutions. The entire process lasted 75 days.
The winning solution proposed a new area that was not considered by GSK teams. The proposer was a Bulgarian who based his idea on a Mexican publication.
Several other winning proposals contributed useful ideas. Also, the process enabled collaboration between the GSK team and the winning researchers.
Questions for Case 11.2
1. Why did GSK decide to crowdsource?
2. Why did the company use InnoCentive?
3. Comment on the global nature of the case.
4. What lessons did you learn from this case?
5. Why do you think a small $5000 reward is sufficient?
This problem has been solved!
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