Crowdsourcing the Engaged Public

Crowdsourcing is a type of participative online activity in which a group of individuals of varying knowledge, heterogeneity, and number, voluntary undertake a task. The undertaking of the task entails mutual benefit: the user receives the satisfaction of social recognition, self-esteem, or the development of individual skills, while the crowdsourcer obtains and utilize to their advantage what the user has brought to the project. The web provides a particularly good venue for crowdsourcing since individuals tend to be more open in web-based projects where they are not being physically judged or scrutinized and thus can feel more comfortable sharing. This ultimately allows for well-designed projects because individuals are less conscious, or maybe even less aware, of scrutiny towards their work. In an online atmosphere, more attention is given to the project rather than communication with other individuals.

We are developing a specialized user interface that allows the interested public to explore the networks and contribute new portions of the data. In particular, the interface enables the users to assign relationships that they think exist among certain economic entities, according to some source if information. Users are thus creating themselves the links of the network in a collective process. The interface will provide for the provenance tracking of each link and for some level of trust assignment.

Simpol official crowdsourcing platform is Graph Commons.