Attracting High-Quality Contestants to Contest in the Context of Crowdsourcing Contest Platform

Pei Yu Chen, Paul Pavlou, Shinyi Wu, Yang Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Contests have long existed to source ideas and solutions. The emergence of crowdsourcing contest platforms greatly reduces the costs and broadens the reach of running contests by facilitating access to a large pool of labor, making contests a cost-efficient approach to procure ideas/solutions even for employers of limited resources. As a result, the use of contests surges and there is a flux of small-to-medium size contests to these platforms. This study focuses on these new waves of small-to-medium-size contests on crowdsourcing contest platforms and extends the literature in several ways: First, prior literature focuses extensively on contest prize, we also consider the effect of contest duration, which plays salient role on contest platforms. Our findings provide evidence that contest duration affects both the number and the quality of contestants attracted to a contest. Second, prior literature assumes contests exist independently and that the quality distribution of contestants is exogenous; accordingly, the number of contestants can be regarded as a proxy of contest performance. We show that contest design parameters have direct effects on the quality distribution of contestants. Specifically, increasing contest duration, while attracting more contestants, results in a downward shift on the quality distribution of the contestants attracted to the contest. Third, recognizing that each contest does not exist independently on crowdsourcing contest platforms, we also incorporate the number of competing contests in our model. Our results provide practical recommendations on how to set up successful contests and attract high-quality contestants to a contest on a crowdsourcing contest platform.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1751-1771
Number of pages21
JournalProduction and Operations Management
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • contest design
  • contest platform
  • contestant quality
  • crowdsourcing
  • open contests

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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