Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham
While gearing up for its 50th anniversary, the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham (CFGB) held a series of meetings and private conversations to come up with the next big thing. From those conversations, they learned that local residents were interested in a “cooler, more vibrant city.” So the foundation launched Prize2theFuture to source creative ideas for a community-informed city development project. The foundation’s “Catalyst Fund” committed $75,000 in prizes to award people whose ideas help build a brighter future in Birmingham… literally!
Focusing creative minds on transformational possibilities for improving Birmingham from within, this challenge asked participants: "what would you build at the contest site to transform Birmingham into a cooler, more vibrant city?" As a community foundation, running a crowdsourcing contest for public engagement and urban development was unfamiliar territory, to say the least. Skild was involved in a wide range of consulting and operational activities to support the creative design and execution of this “landmark” program. Negotiating nay-sayers and skeptics, Skild acted as a sounding board for CFGB staff, board members, and the community at large. Skild oversaw all technical aspects of the contest microsite in addition to implementing its contest management software to streamline the workflows.
The Skild Solution
The results? An inaugural contest exploded into a community workshop with nearly 3,000 participants from 39 countries, all focused focused on creative ways to transform Birmingham. Local and national press covered the story, and Mashable featured Prize2theFuture in a post entitled, “How 3 Cities Are Crowdsourcing for Community Revitalization.” Skild’s competition software operated flawlessly processing a huge volume of submissions in a short period of time, Alabama’s Crimson Tide won the BCS National Championship, and everyone in Birmingham lived happily ever after. The end.