General Interest

Investigating the requirements of an online emergency response platform

  • Research

This paper highlights some of the difficulties experienced by volunteers and members of the general public when coordinating a response to an emergency in Pakistan, and discusses a participatory approach to investigating the requirements of an online emergency response platform that links volunteers with donors. The approach builds upon the use of a prototype platform in a simulated emergency situation with real users to test assumptions and learn about the design requirements for such a platform. The paper details the design process and the features of the prototype, and the feedback it received from users.

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The Metrics Café

  • How-to

Funders need impact metrics. Grantees do, too. So who decides what gets measured?

Because funders’ and grantees’ measurement needs clash, they wind up with reporting systems that serve neither. This framework can help reconcile their needs, turning a tangle of metrics into genuine learning.

We explore four models:

  • Prix Fixe: All grantees report on same set of metrics.
  • A La Carte: Grantees choose from a menu of standard metrics.
  • Made-to-Order: Funder and grantee work together to come up with a set of metrics.
  • Bring your Own Lunch: Grantees come with their own metrics.

The framework presents pros, cons, implications and recommendations for each model. Drawing on cases from Root Capital, Development Innovation Ventures at USAID, Mercy Corps’ Social Venture Fund, and the Autodesk Foundation, this framework can help funders decide what model is right for them.

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Handbook for Biomass Cookstove Research, Design, and Development

  • How-to

This handbook presents insights and methodologies from recent biomass cookstove R&D programs at multiple institutions to achieve higher performance, lower cost, and improved usability. This handbook will help cookstove designers and enterprises to integrate the latest R&D innovations into their products and support further innovation.

This handbook was written by a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology D-Lab, led by Dan Sweeney, with research and editorial support from Megha Hegde, Kendra Leith and Amy Smith, in partnership with the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. This was inspired by their work with small- and medium-scale cookstove and fuel manufacturers, including at the International Development Design Summit for Cookstoves in East Africa in 2017. Participants used design thinking and cookstove R&D to develop creative solutions to challenging problems in household and commercial cooking in the region.

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Build-It: Maize Sheller

  • Build-It

Build-It instructions for a handheld maize sheller. This build-it is designed to be taught to a group of all skill levels, and teaches hands-on basic metalworking techniques to those that participate. This design requires a specific jig for crimping (blueprints included), which can be made by any metalworker with basic welding supplies.

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Build-It: Detachable Arrowhead

  • Build-It

Build-It instructions for a detachable metal arrowhead. This build-it is designed to be taught to a group of all skill levels, and teaches hands-on basic metalworking techniques to those that participate.

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IDIN Program Impact Report 2012-2016

  • IDIN Communications

IDIN's program impact report demonstrates what the program and its partners have achieved together from 2012-2016.

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IDIN Program Impact Report 2012-2016

  • IDIN Communications

IDIN's program impact report demonstrates what the program and its partners have achieved together from 2012-2016. 

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IDIN Program Impact Report 2012-2016

  • IDIN Communications

IDIN's program impact report demonstrates what the program and its partners have achieved together from 2012-2016. 

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Understanding Local Innovation in a Business Ecosystem in Gurue, Mozambique

  • Research

This report was produced by IDIN 2016 Summer Research Fellow Katrine Tjoelsen, who traveled to Gurue, Mozambique to understand the dynamics of local innovation among smallholders farmers in this rural community. This report presents a summary of findings from 30 interviews with smallholder farmers as well as insights from a much larger survey administered in collaboration with TechnoServe, the local project partner for this research.

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Learning to Adapt: A Case Study of a Climate Change Pilot Project in Shaanxi, China

  • Research

This report and case study presents the research of IDIN 2016 Summer Research Fellow Jessica Gordon, who researched an innovative poverty alleviation and climate adaptation pilot project in a village in rural western China.  The case study finds that the project was effective in influencing the local development plan for the area to take into consideration climate change adaptation and mitigation and to link these issues to poverty reduction, making this the first county in China to develop a climate resilient local development plan.

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