Brainstorming can be a great way to generate solutions to everyday problems and monumental issues alike. No bad ideas, no nasty comments, everyone contributes, and after a predetermined length of time we cull through the suggestions and see what we have. Discard what is not usable and use the rest to start generating your solution(s). I have found this process to be a great way to foster staff involvement and at the same time generate creative solutions to the matter at hand.
What was once a conference room exercise can now be done on-line at a site called Brain Reactions. This is a pay service that allows for private brainstorm rooms to be created. A free test drive is available which permits one brainstorm with 5 participants.
Additionally, the site also offers a space for open brainstorms (free). These are seen by all who check out that section on the site. I thought it would be interesting to post a question and see what kind of response it generated. You can see it and participate here.
Someone just might have a good idea to share. Scientific research? No. But hey, you never know what we might learn.