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Build Awareness: OpenIDEO Community Innovators Awards

What about an awards program that highlights the work already being done throughout the world, within Social Business, Community development, Health, Open Technologies etc. that could do with some recognition? Aside from recognising outstanding work in these fields, the program would introduce all these people to OpenIDEO, raising awareness of the tools it offers and potentially connecting a whole heap of people who might otherwise have never connected.

Photo of Ben Morgan
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OpenIDEO is obviously a fantastic place full of interested, active innovators. However, there must be thousands of people out there who are already active in their own communities, doing amazing things in traditional ways. Imagine if they had access to the tools of OpenIDEO and the OI online community.

Of course, anyone can join OpenIDEO, but they have to KNOW about it first. I’m thinking of an awards program that highlights the work already being done throughout the world, within Social Business, Community development, Health, Open Technologies etc. that could do with some recognition.

Aside from recognising outstanding work in these fields, the program would introduce all these people (and everyone within their communities) to OpenIDEO, raising awareness of the tools it offers and potentially connecting a whole heap of people who might otherwise have never connected.

The idea would be for traditional media (community newspapers, websites and the nationals) to do the promotion for us. You can just see the headlines now:

“Local Community Health Program wins OpenIDEO Award”

“Smalltownville Scoops 8 OI Awards for Community Innovation”

Perhaps rather than a yearly awards night, it becomes a monthly awards program, looking at 12 categories each year.

The winners would get a package of OpenIDEO materials they could use on their websites/newsletters, from videos to JPGs and, of course, a physical award (always nice to get one of those!).


UPDATE

Perhaps they could just be called 'OI Community Impact Awards', covering everything from implementation of concepts through to individuals and groups having an impact outside of the OpenIDEO challenges.

As Meena suggests, the OpenIDEO Journalists could be enlisted to help spread the word about the awards through short stories for local, regional and national news sources.

What kind of social impact does this concept achieve?

It draws attention TO social impact. It brings OpenIDEO out of the (sometimes daunting) world of online, and engages with OpenIDEATORS who aren’t yet connected to the OpenIDEO community. Raises the profile of OpenIDEO and existing examples of social impact.

What skills are required to take this concept forward?

Might be nice to have assistance from someone who has run a similar awards program before.

How do you envision this concept being supported financially?

Depending on the scale of the awards, it could end up costing relatively little, however if there were physical events involved, it may need some funding.

Virtual Team:

Meena Kadri Vincent Cheng

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Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard

Hi Ben,

this is an interesting idea and a nice way to increase awareness. However, on OpenIDEO rather than the individuals, there is a focus on ideas and concepts. I'm just wondering if there would be a way to give the awards not to "persons" (although you end up giving it to a physical body) but to projects and concepts. I think it will emphasize the ideas rather than the individuals and the collaborative culture of the OI community.

al

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