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Participatory Mechanisms in Crowdfunding

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Michael PAPE and Lorenzo IMBESI


This research seeks to investigate the convergence of crowdsourcing and
crowdfunding practices to affect co-design activities between project
founders and user-investors through reward-based crowdfunding. To that
end, it examines 600 successful design-centred projects on Kickstarter from
the project categories of Design, Technology, Games, and Fashion in order to
classify and quantify the different types of participation leveraged by project
founders in the sample. We define five ‘participatory mechanisms’ through
which founders can leverage crowds, and further find that projects’ context
and proposed outcomes are significantly related to participation. Within our
sample, participatory mechanisms were most often observed in the
Technology and Games categories, and in software and hardware projects.


PUBLISHED: Proceedings from the The 19th DMI: Academic Design Management Conference, 2014


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