Forecasting Vehicle Innovations Using Crowdsourced Tournaments

John Paul MacDuffie, Rahul Kapoor, and Daniel Wilde, Management, The Wharton School

Abstract: The automotive ecosystem is in the midst of a dramatic transformation: from total reliance on internal combustion engines to growing acceptance of electric and hybrid electric vehicles; from driven to driverless cars; from vehicle ownership to vehicle sharing and pay-for-usage ride-hailing — and everything in between. For the last two years, we have been studying this transformation using crowdsourced forecasting tournaments in collaboration with Good Judgment Inc. (GJ), an organization that excels in designing and implementing such tournaments, based on the pioneering research by Philip Tetlock and colleagues. Led by John Paul MacDuffie and Rahul Kapoor, its objective was to learn more about the likely trajectory of these emerging technologies by harnessing the wisdom of the crowd.

Much of the present research on forecasting tournaments is centered on efforts to predict economic and political outcomes. It is our continued belief that there is a real opportunity in exploring the use of this tournament design for the purpose of understanding the patterns of disruption in industries. We have been working with GJ since October of 2015 to design and host forecasting tournaments focusing on the emerging technologies and innovations within the automotive sector.

The 2018-2019 Challenge

Like the last two years’ challenges, the 2018-2019 Vehicle Innovations Challenge will track developments in technology, automaker strategies, the competitive landscape and the regulatory environment to inform forecasters about these new issues while involving them in a global crowd-sourced effort to anticipate the trajectory of an industry in upheaval.

Join the challenge here.

Michelle Eckert is Marketing and Communications Coordinator for the Mack Institute, where she works to engage students, researchers, and corporate partners in opportunities for collaboration. Michelle received her B.A. in Art from Valparaiso University in 2007. Her background includes two AmeriCorps terms of service working to teach mathematics, computer literacy, and job readiness skills to out-of-school youth in Philadelphia, focusing particularly on promoting access to post-secondary education.