The Goal

Bridge the gap between academia and politics by generating independent and high quality solutions for foreign policy


Find an ideation platform that helps develop complex solutions for the Swiss political environment.


An innovation feature integrated into the community platform that hosts political challenges for the members.

Looking for the perfect ideation platform

foraus was looking for a tool that combines community and ideation software. They did their homework, analyzed various ideation tools (such as Climate CoLab, DCENT, and MMOWGLI), and came to the conclusion that these tools lacked proper social networking functions. This is where Open Social comes in. By building an ideation module on top of our community software, foraus was able to have the best of both worlds.


The Open Social platform, and especially the ideation feature we've built on top of it, is disrupting the way we create bottom-up policy advice in an international network of 'open think tanks'.

We're very happy with the collaboration so far and look forward to a future where global challenges are solved by a connected global civil society.
Jonas Nakonz, Lead Policy Kitchen, Foraus
Jonas Nakonz
Lead Policy Kitchen, Foraus - Swiss Forum on Foreign Policy.

Our Solution: Innovation + Community

Customization has always been a strong point of the Open Social team, which is one of the things that attracted foraus to Open Social. We could already provide a community platform and could develop an additional innovation feature.

foraus sponsored and co-developed the crowd innovation feature with Open Social with funding from Engagement Migros. We invited ideation experts such as Rob Shapiro - Founder & Principal at Shapiro Cloud, Tair - Lead Developer at Circle Economy, and Laurie Tan - RAPSODIA Innovation Center to discuss the ideation feature on our Knowledge Center. This way, we could collect important feedback from experts to make the best version of the crowd innovation feature.

We will be opening Open Social to clients and experts for further co-development.

Foraus, ideation community
& valuable insights
& creativity
through innovation

Crowd Innovation Feature

The crowd innovation feature allows groups to present a problem or challenge that the community solves together.

  • The challenge creator sets different phases (e.g. brainstorm, voting, etc.).
  • Each phase has adjustable phases, voting, commenting, visibility of content, and creation of content.

Community members can vote and comment on ideas, and the moderators advance them to the next phase. The end goal is to create viable solutions.

This module is currently only available for enterprise clients.

Implementation Update

Curious about how the community is progressing? We'll leave regular updates here. 

November 2018: Since the first pilot campaign on September 15, foraus was able to engage over 130 users, leading to the generation of over 40 ideas on biodiversity conservation on a global level. The final results will be made public at the end of the process.


Read more Open Social success stories