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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2013, Article ID 248170, 13 pages
Research Article

Crowdsourcing New Product Design on the Web: An Analysis of Online Designer Platform Service

1Sun Yat-Sen Business School, Sun Yat-Sen University, 135 West Xingang Road, Guangzhou 510275, China
2Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Received 2 August 2013; Revised 7 October 2013; Accepted 8 October 2013

Academic Editor: Kannan Govindan

Copyright © 2013 Xin Dai et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A designer is a core resource in the fashion industry. Successful designers need to be creative and quick to understand the business and wider environment in which they are operating. The Designer Platform Service (DPS), which combines the mechanism of crowdsourcing and group buying on the web, provides a platform for entrant designers to try their abilities in the real market practice. Freelance designers post design samples or sketches of products on the website of DPS, and consumers may preorder the products (each at a fixed price) online based on the design information. Once the number of ordering reaches or passes a certain threshold, that is, the minimum production quantity (MPQ), DPS will arrange for production and delivery according to the orders received. This novel service boosts the growth of entrant designers and links designing works with real markets directly. We are interested in how the price and MPQ decisions are made in DPS, with consideration of the entrant designer's objective, decision sequences, and customer demand structures. We develop Stackelberg games to model and derive the equilibrium solutions under individual scenarios. Our findings suggest feasibility of the DPS business model.