Group wisdom support systems : Aggregating the insights of many through information technology

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343 - 350
Journal / PublicationIssues in Information Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008


Evidence from a variety of domains suggests that the wisdom of crowds, the aggregated insights and judgments of large groups of non-experts, can generate results that are equal or better to those of experts. Traditionally, aggregating the insights of many has been a tedious and often infeasible task. Even the group decision support systems of a few years ago were not ready for this challenge. They would usually only facilitate small or medium sized groups and not easily scale. Recent developments in ICTs, however have made the access to large groups of diverse individuals significantly more feasible, suggesting the feasibility of group wisdom support systems (GWSSs). Within this article we determine key requirements for a GWSS, based on the characteristics to be fulfilled for collective intelligence to successfully emerge. We then discuss specific system requirements for two types of systems, a Type 1 numeric belief aggregation system, and a Type 2 knowledge aggregation system. Type 1, represented for instance by prediction markets is relatively simpler, while Type 2, represented for instance by wiki-like mechanisms, is considerable more complex (not necessarily in the software, but in the processes that make the system work). The article concludes with design suggestions.

Research Area(s)

  • Group wisdom support system, group decision support systems, knowledge management, wisdom of crowds, collective intelligence, wiki, prediction market