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Crowdfunding success

Researchers from Italy, Germany, and the USA analyzed 728 research crowdfunding campaigns to evaluate what factors may influence the outcome of this new fundraising method. The campaigns ran between 2012 and 2015 on New York–based crowdfunding website Experiment. The results are curious. Early-stage researchers achieved their funding targets more often than their more senior colleagues, and women had a higher success rate than men. The results were published on the US National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) repository in March. According to the study, parameters established to ensure project quality, such as peer review, do not correlate with crowdfunding success. “Researchers with less experience are at a disadvantage when applying to funding agencies, but have more appeal with the general public. This suggests that backers prioritize not the scientific merit of the project, but their contribution to the researcher’s training,” concludes the study. The authors note, however, that crowdfunding is only a complementary form of funding, since the amounts of money raised are low.