Paying in Kind for Crowdsourced Work in Developing Regions

  • Navkar Samdaria
  • Akhil Mathur
  • Ravin Balakrishnan
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7319)


In developing regions, the reach of crowdsourcing services such as Amazon Mechanical Turk (mTurk) has been limited by the lack of adequate payment mechanisms and low visibility amongst the crowd. In this paper, we present a commodity based model for crowdsourcing where crowd workers get paid in kind in the form of a commodity instead of money. Our model makes crowdsourcing services more visible to users in developing regions and also addresses the issue of payment. We conducted two field studies in urban India to evaluate the applicability of our proposed model. Our results show that the commodity based crowdsourcing model reached workers with very different demographics from the typical mTurk workers. We also found that users preferred to receive a commodity instead of money as remuneration.


crowdsourcing mobile phones humans as pervasive computing resources commodity exchange model developing regions Amazon Mechanical Turk India 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Navkar Samdaria
    • 1
  • Akhil Mathur
    • 2
  • Ravin Balakrishnan
    • 1
  1. 1.University of TorontoTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Bell Labs IndiaAlcatel-LucentBangaloreIndia

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