Open School (2009)

Dr. Christoph Ihl / Prof. Dr. Johann Füller / Dr. Michael Bartl / Dr. Nizar Abdelkafi

The aim of the Open School project is to strengthen the openness of universities to its students. In an Open School, students do not take a passive role as service consumers; they are active, and empowered members of their university. Hence, the open school reflects a new mindset in higher education enabled by the usage of latest crowdsourcing technologies.


The web-based IDEANET platform is an adequate system to support universities in launching an Open School project. Three case studies conducted at German higher education institutions demonstrate the feasibility of the concept in practice. The case studies show that students are willing to contribute with their ideas to different issues, ranging from new entrepreneurial business models, improvements of study conditions or creation of new teaching, and research methods. Including grading systems and possibilities for students to realize their ideas in practice are promising, and effective reward mechanisms to steer student participation. In some circumstances, however, the use of grades as a reward can give rise to conflicts among students, and hence needs to be carefully designed.

Watch the presentation about this project on Slideshare