The University of British Columbia study suggests that crowdfunding may be a way to provide seed capital to risky pharmaceutical and/or disease diagnostics startups.
Reviewing 97 campaigns, it was determined that average donations ranged from $59 to $199 on seven of eight crowd funding websites; donations on the other site averaged $1,369. The average number of donors ranged from about eight to 703, while fundraising goals ranged from roughly $6,900 to nearly $343,000. And the mean amount of money raised in each campaign was more than $45,600.
The authors conclude that “that the very modest amounts raised by some campaigns suggest that crowd funding will not become a substitute for government funding. And raising money for rare disease research may prove difficult, because many donors are motivated to support research in which they feel they have a personal stake in seeing new treatments.” But it’s worth a try.