Index: Collective Intelligence

By Hannah Pierce and Audrie Pirkl

The Living Library Index – inspired by the Harper’s Index – provides important statistics and highlights global trends in governance innovation. This installment focuses on collective intelligence and was originally published in 2017.

The Collective Intelligence Universe

  • Amount of money that Reykjavik’s Better Neighbourhoods program has provided each year to crowdsourced citizen projects since 2012: € 2 million (Citizens Foundation)
  • Number of U.S. government challenges that people are currently participating in to submit their community solutions: 778 (
  • Percent of U.S. arts organizations used social media to crowdsource ideas in 2013, from programming decisions to seminar scheduling details: 52% (Pew Research)
  • Number of Wikipedia members who have contributed to a page in the last 30 days: over 120,000 (Wikipedia Page Statistics)
  • Number of languages that the multinational crowdsourced Letters for Black Lives has been translated into: 23 (Letters for Black Lives)
  • Number of comments in a Reddit thread that established a more comprehensive timeline of the theater shooting in Aurora than the media: 1272 (Reddit)
  • Number of physicians that are members of SERMO, a platform to crowdsource medical research: 800,000 (SERMO)
  • Number of citizen scientist projects registered on SciStarter: over 1,500 (Collective Intelligence 2017 Plenary Talk: Darlene Cavalier)
  • Entrants to NASA’s 2009 TopCoder Challenge: over 1,800 (NASA)


  • Number of submissions for Block Holm (a digital platform that allows citizens to build “Minecraft” ideas on vacant city lots) within the first six months: over 10,000 (OpenLearn)
  • Number of people engaged to The Participatory Budgeting Project in the U.S.: over 300,000. (Participatory Budgeting Project)
  • Amount of money allocated to community projects through this initiative: $238,000,000


  • Percentage of Internet-using adults with chronic health conditions that have gone online within the US to connect with others suffering from similar conditions: 23% (Pew Research)
  • Number of posts to Patient Opinion, a UK based platform for patients to provide anonymous feedback to healthcare providers: over 120,000 (Nesta)
    • Percent of NHS health trusts utilizing the posts to improve services in 2015: 90%
    • Stories posted per month: nearly 1,000 (The Guardian)
  • Number of tumors reported to the English National Cancer Registration each year: over 300,000 (Gov.UK)
  • Number of users of an open source artificial pancreas system: 310 (Collective Intelligence 2017 Plenary Talk: Dana Lewis)


  • Number of submissions from 40 countries to the 2017 Open (Government) Contracting Innovation Challenge: 88 (The Open Data Institute)
  • Public-service complaints received each day via Indonesian digital platform Lapor!: over 500 (McKinsey & Company)
  • Number of registered users of Unicef Uganda’s weekly, SMS poll U-Report: 356,468 (U-Report)
  • Number of reports regarding government corruption in India submitted to IPaidaBribe since 2011: over 140,000 (IPaidaBribe)


  • Reviews posted since Yelp’s creation in 2009: 121 million reviews (Statista)
  • Percent of Americans in 2016 who trust online customer reviews as much as personal recommendations: 84% (BrightLocal)
  • Number of companies and their subsidiaries mapped through the OpenCorporates platform: 60 million (Omidyar Network)

Crisis Response

Public Safety

  • Number of sexual harassment reports submitted to from 50 cities in India and Nepal to SafeCity, a crowdsourcing site and mobile app: over 4,000 (SafeCity)
  • Number of people that used Facebook’s Safety Check, a feature that is being used in a new disaster mapping project, in the first 24 hours after the terror attacks in Paris: 4.1 million (Facebook)