The many faces of innovation for development

Who are the protagonists of social innovation around the world?

In this video gallery we have collected the pitch decks from many of the innovators who have  successfully passed the first stage of the selection process of the “ICT for Social Good” Grant, created by Ong2.0 and realised within the Innovazione per lo Sviluppo Program, thanks to the support of Fondazione Cariplo, Compagnia di San Paolo and the collaboration of Fondazione Mission Bambini Onlus.

by Viviana Brun

 

 

To present their project, their idea, their reason for working passionately every day, in a span of thirty seconds is a challenging task. Many innovators of the “ICT for Social Good” Grant, however, accepted this challenge with great enthusiasm and tried their best to briefly introduce themselves and their projects.

This video gallery was created to offer an overview of the variety evident in the social innovation sector. It is a world populated by people of different origins, aspirations, ages … a sign of how ICTs are versatile tools that can be adapted to contexts and needs in the service of a more inclusive kind of development.

 

Let’s have a look at the video playlist.

 

One problem means one new idea

Every deficiency has at least one solution, and it’s just a matter of identifying the one that suits best. This seems to be the idea that inspired the work of the participants in this first edition of the “ICT for Social Good” Grant.

So, if citizens in Bosnia-Herzegovina don’t feel safe enough, they can join forces with and help the police/public safety institutions to make their environment more secure by using Civil Patrols, a software that helps end users report illegal activities to the appropriate institutions via secure online communication channels.

To help the hearing-impaired in Colombia overcome communication barriers they encounter every day, a virtual interpreter is available on PCs and smartphones.

In Nigeria, in order to counter the black market for blood transfusions, and encourage the meeting and the exchange of information among donors, patients and health centers, Bukola Bolarinwa founded Haima Health Initiative, an application accessible on PCs and mobile devices.

In India, the Nyaaya platform supports citizens’ access to state laws with the use of guides and tutorials. Availability in various local languages ensures that everyone is able to truly understand his or her rights.

If traditional African identity and knowledge are likely to be lost, the app developed by Elizabeth Kperrun helps children rediscover fables in their local language, and have fun while learning in English, Hausa, Swahili, Igbo, and Yoruba, providing everyone with access to quality educational content.

According to the World Health Organisation, in Cameroon deaths caused by road accidents exceed those due to malaria by 40%. As a result Achiri Arnold Nji decided to develop Traveler, a platform that uses big data, GPS systems, and sensors to monitor the performance of bus drivers, improve passenger safety, and respond in case of accidents.

 

Social innovation is not just in the technology

Not everyone develops new or highly technological solutions. In Benin, where people with albinism still face prejudice and discrimination, Franck Hounsa educated a group of 20 albinos on blogging and digital writing so they can raise awareness on what this congenital disorder really is, to help prevent the spread of prejudice and discrimination and get other albinos out of isolation.
In Ivory Coast, Daniel Oulai combined offline and online methods through the creation of “Grainothèque” -the first Ivorian community library dedicated to seeds- created to preserve African biodiversity, and to ensure young farmers’ access to good quality native seeds. The project is accompanied by the creation of a web platform dedicated to agro-topics such as seed reproduction, how to adapt agricultural production to climate change, and how to improve the marketing of local products.

 

Agriculture and health among the most common themes

There are many solutions dedicated to agriculture, as well as products and services targeting women’s health and empowerment.

In Burundi, where access to the Internet is limited, social organisations have registered strong demand for good information on sexual and reproductive health issues. To cope with this need, Grâce Françoise Nibizi and SaCoDé association put in place an SMS information system.

While in Nigeria, Emmanuel Owobu created MobiCure, an app that allows mothers to monitor their children’s health and growth by receiving targeted information for various stages of their children’s development.

In Mozambique, Suzana Moreira is working to improve women’s access to entrepreneurship through a training program and a direct support system realised via SMS and social media.

Among the videos received, there are also some Italian examples. Organizations such as IPSIA, CINI Italia e Global Health Telemedicine Onlus presented innovative projects realized in different countries in the fields of education, women’s protection and struggle against early marriage, and telemedicine.

The basic rule for everyone is to focus on effectiveness, not on the use of technology in itself, but on the use of ICTs as tools to create a concrete and positive impact at a local level.

 

partnership

ICT for Social Good: 233 innovative projects from the world

233 innovative projects from 57 countries all over the world, this is the positive outcome of the first edition of ICT for Social Good, the Grant organised by ONG2.0 – within the Programme “Innovation for Development” promoted by Fondazione Cariplo and Compagnia di San Paolo – in collaboration with Fondazione Mission Bambini, to sustain and support innovative ideas created with a bottom-up approach in low-income countries.

by Viviana Brun

 

An education app in the local language for spreading African culture and history while supporting children in learning.
A mobile health system to inform and share basic medical information via SMS.
Smartphones as a tool to connect and inform farmers about market trends and cultivation methods for improving and increasing the agri-production.
Hot-spots installed in rural areas to let people access information through the Internet or via preloaded content.
ICTs as a way to manage the medicine supply in health centres.
A YouTube channel as a tool to raise awareness about the risks and the modalities of international trafficking in human beings.

These are only a few examples of the 233 innovative projects we received from 57 countries all over the world. At a first glance, candidates demonstrated a high level of competence and creativity in the use of ICT for local development.

Mapping innovative projects

In order to allow everybody to explore and compare the different projects, we collected on this map all the local innovators who applied for the Grant. By clicking on each waypoint you have access to some basic information. The map is designed to be implemented and to host more and more information over the time.

Stories of social innovation

All the applications we received show an interesting cosmos of stories of social innovation: innovative projects, created with a bottom-up approach and able of generating a positive social impact at the community level. These initiatives represent a precious material for raising awareness in the world of international cooperation, paving the way for a new approach to local development. Indeed, all these projects show how important is to have a critical and propositive approach to ICT4D and to give value to local talents and professionalisms engaged for social change.

In the coming months, we have planned to tell the stories of the protagonists of ICT for Social Good Grant from their personal point of view. We will collect all these interviews in a special section on the website of Ong2.0.

Next steps

The first session of the selection process has already started. A jury of experts (selected among the actors involved in the “Innovazione per lo Sviluppo” Programme) is currently working to verify, one by one, that all the applications are eligible and congruent with the Grant statements. The candidates considered formally valid will be invited to provide the full documentation and a letter of reference from an authority that can be either internationally (UN agency, development agency, international NGO, etc.) or locally recognised (University, research centre, government, regional institution, etc.) attesting the real implementation of the project. The Scientific Committee of ICT for Social Good will be in charge of the final evaluation.

The members of the Scientific Committee are – Guglielmo Gori from SocialFare, the first Social Innovation Center in Italy, – Martin Burt, Founder and General Director of Fundacion Paraguaya, a Paraguay-based NGO focused on microfinance and entrepreneurship, – Ottavio Crivaro, CEO of Moxoff spa, a company specialised on the application of mathematics for the innovation and design of services and products for companies, – Mario Molteni, Senior Fellow of Ashoka for E4IMPACT, a foundation that offers MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship in five African countries, – Giulio Quaggiotto,Innovation Advisor of the Prime Minister’s Office of the United Arab Emirates and Associate to the well-known English foundation Nesta.

The winners will receive a money prize. Moreover, they will be invited to Italy to attend the final event of the Innovazione per lo Sviluppo framework, that will take place in Milan on November 2017. Italian entrepreneurial and research entities will be present in order to know the project and, possibly, sustain it.

 

 

The ICT for Social Good Grant is organised by Ong 2.0, CISV, Fondazione Mission Bambini, Opes Impact Fund, with the financial help of Fondazione Cariplo e Compagnia di San Paolo and the collaboration of SocialFare, E4Impact, Nexa Center, MoxOff, Calandria. Media partner: Agenzia Dire.

ICT for Social Good: a grant for local innovators

We believe that innovation is a powerful local development force, capable of generating ideas that transform the life of the communities. This is the reason why we decide to launch ICT for Social Good” – a grant for creative and groundbreaking ideas, using digital technology for positive social change.

Read more