FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Sunday 18 November 2018
Dubai, UAE: Conducting surveys may not be an efficient way of eliciting the accurate response from participants and neither are group discussions, where extroverts tend to bulldoze the less vocal participants, thus nullifying the purpose of brainstorming and coming out with the best of ideas. These were among the findings of a paper sponsored by Dubai International Financial Centre incorporated Bizness Analytics, primarily targeted at higher educational institutions.
The Paper, titled “A Quest to Redesign College Ideation System”, explicates the many reasons for educational institutions failing to get the best ideas from their student communities to improve their quality and standards of schooling. Among these is a lack of reward systems targeted towards those that make efforts to respond intelligently and diligently to questionnaires from their management.
The Paper also indicates a lack of imagination on the part of educational institutions that email lengthy survey forms to students, making it mandatory to fill these up. What they don’t realize is that students neither have the patience nor any incentive to fill these up, according to the Paper.
Similarly, where institutions might try to reward students by forming elite academic committees of select enterprising student representatives, these have their flaws too. The Paper notes that group discussions conducted to get to best conclusions have their own weaknesses.
“Research indicates that in a typical six-person meeting, two people do more than 60 percent of the talking. Increase the size of the group, and the problem only gets worse. In reality, extroverts always dominate introverts and hamper idea generation even if you have a talented facilitator. This also leads to groupthink; it is dangerous when critics are reluctant to point out a plan’s defects for fear of being ostracised by a group,” the Paper cautions.
To overcome some of these challenges, the Paper recommends setting up of a system, wherein students can go online and participate in any discussion without limitations. Such a system could also have automated reward protocols as incentives for participants.
The Paper mentions the terminology brainwriting, which was coined by Leigh Thompson, a professor from Kellogg management school, and suggested the idea of simultaneously written generations of ideas.
“When you are writing ideas, no one can interrupt you, no one can block your thoughts nobody has to guess who suggests which idea as it is a meritocracy of ideas. It is not a popularity contest. The overly dominant people have been neutralized and the normally quiet shy people are energized” the Paper observes.
The Paper also points to a new study by Ethan Bernstein, Jesse Shore, and David Lazer, three American academics, who suggest that the best idea generation comes when group members are given time to respond at their comfort. It says this kind of environment can be given to participants not through traditional meetings but by an effective software system.
“A software system where the dean can invite academic members to give their feedback, supplement and upvote each other’s answer can be an effective solution. The software system offers more flexibility for the members. Rather than always sit together at a fixed time, they can finish their contribution before the deadline, so that latecomers and absenteeism are avoided,” Huang Haozhe, the author of the Paper, notes.
Haozhe and Dibashis Chuturdharee, who is a contributor in the Paper, are both undergraduate students at the SP Jain School of Global Management in Dubai.
Sandeep Raghuwanshi, chief executive officer, of Bizness Analytics, said that the Paper was sponsored for the Ideation Bucket vertical of the organization to test the effectiveness of the strategy and content making tools of higher education in most global institutions. He said while the findings of the Paper are significant, the alternative solutions suggested are pragmatic and require testing.
“We are in the process of testing the alternative solutions suggested by Haozhe and Chuturdharee in the Paper by tweaking our software to cater to the exact needs of higher schools of learning. We should be able to roll it out to universities and colleges in the next few weeks,” Raghuwanshi said.
About Bizness Analytics Inc.: Bizness Analytics Inc. is an AWS Partner, based out of Dubai International Financial Centre. The enterprise’s work concerns data science. It provides high-quality data analytics services and cloud-based applications to turn complex big data into powerful business intelligence to solve the business challenges of tomorrow.
About Ideation Bucket: Ideation Bucket is an innovation manager’s tool, which primarily caters to running idea campaigns in a regulated environment.
About the Paper: A Quest to Redesign College Ideation System (“The Paper”) was sponsored by Bizness Analytics. The Paper has been uploaded in the Bizness Analytics website: www.biznessanalytics.com