Source is a program within our Collaboration Portfolio that provides an online platform for leaders and peers to interact with each other’s submissions of crowd-sourced ideas.

Source provides an online platform for crowd-sourced ideas that enables commands to solicit potential solutions to problems while allowing both senior leaders and peers to see and interact with one another’s submissions. The challenge sponsor is provided with new solutions developed by participants. Participants are given the opportunity to connect their solutions with senior commanders who have the ability to take action.

Engaging Warfighters in Open Innovation

Source is designed to present a framed challenge statement to those who have the know-how and experience to develop innovative solutions. The challenge area comes directly from the needs of the sponsoring unit and is accompanied by a detailed plan for implementation. This plan can include a process for solution adoption, a transition to other NSIN programs/services, and awards for winning ideas.

Responding to Command-Driven Innovation Challenges

Source was originally born out of an effort to support the USMC Deputy Commandant for Installations and Logistics. Subsequently, dozens of Source iterations have occurred in support of many disparate commands. Since inception, Source has been responsible for the collection of nearly 1000 ideas and has engaged thousands of users. Many of these ideas have been selected for prototyping and development with at least one idea approaching “program of record” status within the Marine Corps. Due to the success and simplicity of Source, NSIN has continued to receive regular requests from other commands ranging from the tactical to the strategic to deploy a similar capability.

Source iterations are generally run with a 30-day active submission period and the platform is suited for both desktop and mobile access. By leveraging the value of a community-based approach, Source is able to encourage participants to build upon one another’s submissions on a global scale. NSIN has had multiple successful Source iterations with the United States Marine Corps, National Guard, the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), and various other elements of the DoD. The Source program provides a platform where individuals have the chance to have their solution seen by senior leadership and dedicated innovators have responded in force to the opportunity to have their voices heard.

For more information about sponsoring a Source iteration, email