Harvard launches innovation contest for type 1 diabetes

Alright everyone, Harvard has launched a contest for ideas, while not particularly for the open public like most of you and me, it is still a really exciting idea. Here is the open contest news post from Harvard.edu

Harvard Catalyst & InnoCentive Prize for Innovation

Posted February 1, 2010

Using federal stimulus funding from the National Institutes of Health, Harvard Catalyst is collaborating with InnoCentive, a global web community for open innovation, to launch a series of contests aimed at investigating whether new approaches increasingly popular in the private sector might be useful in sparking new research directions and collaborations in the academic healthcare community.

Karim R. Lakhani, PhD, an assistant professor at Harvard Business School and one of the collaboration leaders, noted that, “Open innovation is an effective way to solve scientific problems in the business world.” Innovation contests, according to Lakhani’s research, can help reveal and foster unexpected and novel solutions to vexing scientific problems.

In their first contest, Harvard Catalyst and InnoCentive invite both the Harvard community and the network of InnoCentive solvers to propose new questions and ideas related to Type 1 diabetes. “This challenge is an exercise in tapping the knowledge of the widest possible community and encouraging the formation of new teams and new forms of collaboration around a specific topic area,” said Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Eva Guinan, MD, director of the Harvard Catalyst Linkages program and the other collaboration leader. “Type 1 diabetes is a good example of a disease that has touched many people at Harvard and elsewhere personally and professionally. As a result, they may have questions or ideas that could help spawn new collaborations and areas for research.”

Starting February 1, 2010, Harvard Catalyst and InnoCentive will accept testable, researchable questions and ideas about Type 1 diabetes – its biology, its progression, its clinical presentation, its complications, etc. The questions and ideas should be able to help define problems or new areas requiring exploration and research. All responses must be submitted by March 1, 2010.

The people who submit the best questions or ideas, as determined by a review panel, will receive prizes of between $2,500 and $10,000.

Harvard Catalyst and InnoCentive invite and encourage the entire Harvard community – faculty, students, and administrators and staff of all levels and specialties, including those at the university’s affiliated academic healthcare centers – to register on the InnoCentive website and pose a question or propose an idea, even if they have never been directly involved in the study of Type 1 diabetes or the care of patients with Type 1 diabetes. Said Guinan, “People who submit questions don’t need to have the resources, training, or background necessary to answer them. We want questions and ideas that have been unexplored.”


I'm going to be following the developments on this and I can't wait to see what comes out of it! And I guess if any of you HAPPEN to know someone involved at Harvard, bug them about submitting ideas LOL

This sounds very interesting.