Our challenges and programs are modeled on IDEO's human-centered design methodology. This means that we enable our community to develop solutions rooted in people's needs and lifestyles.

We've created a set of design values that bring out the best of the OpenIDEO community, methods that guide our collaborative process, and actions that drive the innovative process forward.


Lead With Empathy

We typically start our process with research to develop empathy and understand people's needs before diving into solutions.

Methods and Actions


Share your personal story, interview relevant people affected by the challenge topic and share successful initiatives or analogous examples from other areas.


Get inspired and learn from hundreds of stories and insights.


Share your insights via a post.


Share feedback knowledge or simply let someone know you are inspired by their post.


Together Is Better

The most innovative and relevant solutions are co-created by people with diverse perspectives—that is, people like you and the thousands of talented individuals that make up the OpenIDEO community.

Methods and Actions


Share your ideas on how to solve our current challenge. It can be a project you are already working on or a new idea. During this process, we go for quantity. Tap into your imagination and creative confidence—no idea is too big.


Post your ideas and dive into the conversation when others give feedback.

Create a Team

Once you add an idea, invite others to join your team to help you refine it.


Get together with your local community to collaboratively ideate around new solutions.


Share feedback on others’ ideas or simply let them know that it inspired you.


Learn By Doing

We create and then test our ideas with real people - we call this a prototype. We then share our learning with the rest of the community.

Methods and Actions


Test your prototypes with real people, incorporate their feedback, and then test again.


Update your idea as you learn from testing your prototype in order to get feedback from the OpenIDEO global community and experts.


Make It Happen

Whether you want to continue implementing your idea or support others to do so, stay involved.

Methods and Actions


Once you have refined your prototype multiple times, you’re ready for a pilot—a long term prototype that has the potential to become a product or an organization.

Get Support

Contact the OpenIDEO team if you are thinking of crowdfunding or would like to get introduced to our partners. Depending on your needs we might be able to connect you to the right mentor and coach you on how to lead a successful crowdfunding campaign. Some challenges and programs offer funding and IDEO design support to selected ideas. Read the challenge’s brief for more information.