by Zafar Anjum

Singapore improves its OIP crowdsourcing digital solutions platform

May 03, 2021

Businesses looking for digital solutions can find possible matches faster and then more speedily develop proofs of concepts with two new enhancements.

The Singapore government has announced two new features in its Open Innovation Platform (OIP)  to make it easier and faster for public and private organisations to find digital solutions to their problems.

Launched in 2018, the OIP is a virtual crowdsourcing initiative that connects and matches real business challenges or digitalisation opportunities in the country. It is managed by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), statutory board of the Singapore government, under the Ministry of Communications and Information.

One new feature is the Discovery Engine, a search function on the website intended to make the matching of problem-solvers and problem owners easier, through automated recommendations based on analysing problem statements. The Discovery Engine aims to increase the accessibility of innovation to more enterprises, said the IMDA in a statement.

The second feature, called the Digital Bench, is meant to speed up proof-of-concept (PoC) development through a virtual sandbox and testing environment. The IMDA said on its website that the feature “will provide direct access to digital tools, reusable software assets, testbed environments, and community partners to support the testing and development of PoCs”.

Before the Digital Bench became available, organisations had to spend considerable time “to prepare for the prototyping environment, acquiring data sets, or getting a software development platform ready for testing,” the IMDA told the Straits Times newspaper. The Digital Bench should help shorten this process with readily available data sets and open-source development toolkits.

Organisations seeking digital solutions can register with OIP on this website for free; the IMDA will guide and support them. Once a tech solution is selected, IMDA offers funds to develop it. If successful, the winning problem solvers can commercialise and go to market jointly with problem owners, who may serve as reference customers for Singapore or the region.