Part of our work in UNICEF’s Innovation Unit is looking 3-5 years into the future and getting a sense of trends that will be important for the organization in new types of partnerships, new and accelerated business processes and spaces for new technology to be put against programmatic (operational) challenges.
It’s already a quarter of the way into the new year, so without further ado: here are a set of trends that we see as important in the upcoming year of innovation in global development. Please feel free to take issue (or agree) in the comments.
2013 will be the year that…
- we see large-scale commitment from governments and donors to go beyond pilots to invest in real-time information systems in logistics and mobile health.
- Sources: The emergence of mobile supported national health information systems in developing countries. http://www.mobileactive.org/research/emergence-mobile-supported-national-health-information-systems-developing-countries?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Mobileactiveorg+%28MobileActive.org%29
- Example: Uganda’s mTrac system: http://unicefstories.org/2012/08/16/time-magazine-covers-unicef-supported-mtrac-system-in-uganda/
- the development sector will introduce metrics to measure innovation
- Source OECD: Measuring Innovaiton http://www.oecd.org/site/innovationstrategy/measuringinnovationanewperspective-onlineversion.htm
- Example: We’re making this based on some inside information, which we can’t share yet- but for a sneak peek, take a look at all the other work that’s happening in metrics+innovation these days.
- the private sector – particularly mobile and internet service providers – engage in the area of personal identity and birth registration. This area is fundamental to developing robust national systems across the board (education, health, etc) This will create immense opportunity for accelerating birth registration globally.
- Source: Mobile Identity http://www.gsma.com/mobileidentity/programme-overview
- Example: Using RapidSMS for birth registration in Nigeria http://unicefstories.org/2012/10/17/nigeria-using-rapidsms-for-birth-registration/ and Movirtu: http://www.movirtu.com/reinventing-mobile-identity
- we see scaled, open education innovations provide solutions for even the most difficult to reach children
- Source: UNESCO open educational resources: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/communication-and-information/access-to-knowledge/open-educational-resources/
- Example: UNICEF is about to take a great deal of interest in this space – and you can see some of the lead-up work here http://unicefstories.org/category/research/child-friendly-technology/
- we see open-source technology as a driver of south-south collaboration – and find technologies being created in one region and adapted and scaled in others (including south to north transfer)
- we see open platforms and challenges for generating and surfacing solutions begin to be used for addressing development challenges
- Source: DFID Openup12 http://openup12.org/
- Example: http://unicefstories.org/2012/04/02/a-draft-on-an-open-research-project-template/
- we see big data and realtime data as drivers of more efficient programme and policy decision making
- Source: Big Data for Development: http://www.unglobalpulse.org/projects/BigDataforDevelopment
- Example: UReport http://unicefstories.org/2011/08/28/ureport-citizen-feedback-via-sms-in-uganda/
Milan & New York. February, 2013