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How to build back better after a hurricane... and before the next

Imagine relocating the entire population of your country in the face of a colossal hurricane and two months later still not being able to get back…


How technology is helping India move toward smart service delivery

An innovation being rolled out by India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is making the jobs of thousands of health care workers across the country more efficient and helping to secure the…  


Four trends in development innovation

This week’s High-Level Political Forum in New York will review progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Its theme “Eradicating poverty and promoting prosperity in a changing world" makes…  


Better understanding of human behaviour can help achieve the global development agenda

Should you take the medication you need every day at the designated time? Should you test your drinking water supply for safety? Should you invest in fertilizer when you know it will increase your…  


How do you inspire entrepreneurship in a conflict-affected region?

The armed conflict in eastern Ukraine has not only disrupted everyday life in the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk but also led to staggering unemployment. Out of 23 major enterprises in Luhansk region,…  


How a2i is using empathy to foster innovation in Bangladesh

In the last eight years, Bangladesh has established a new development paradigm through its approach to socio-economic development which is high growth yet inclusive, self-reliant yet collaborative,…  


Drones join the fight against climate change risks in the Maldives

I love drones. I have one that I fly when I want to de-stress. Little did I know when I bought it that I could actually play with it at work! It all started about a year ago. As senior advisor on…  


Ready, set, innovate!

In Africa, as in the rest of the world, things are moving! We live in a world that is becoming more and more complex, whether it be in social, economic or political terms. With the introduction of the…  


Drivers of public services and policies of tomorrow – the role of government innovation labs

What comes to mind when you hear the term ‘innovation’? The public sector? – Thought not. But we are working on changing this. Over the last three years, UNDP has set up innovation labs in five…  


Solving last mile challenges: The potential of behavioural insights for the 2030 Agenda

Across the globe, all people – poor or rich – sometimes make choices that are not conducive to their own well-being. Saving enough for retirement, eating healthy, investing in education – all too…  



Bringing youth together to innovate is key to development in Africa

Central to the 28th African Union Summit that takes place in Ethiopia this week and to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum, to be held on 30-31 January 2017, is this question: How do…  


#inno4dev in Iraq: Doing more, lots more, with less

Innovation is alive and well in Iraq as evidenced by the energy, creativity and "grit" of the 175 young entrepreneurs I had the privilege of spending four days with in an #inno4dev (innovation for…  


How to change the world in one word: Volunteer

"Young people can change the world!" These words spoken by a youth representative from the Municipal Volunteer Network in Cuenca, Ecuador, made me think. In general, young people are told that they…  


Co-creating partnerships to achieve the Global Goals

With the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) having significantly raised the bar regarding ambition and universality, there is agreement that we have to go well beyond business as usual. Achieving…  


Innovation for development in Africa: Focus on the public sector

Over the years there have been many definitions of innovation, which unfortunately left the concept rather belabored. The reality is that it is a journey that governments and public sectors need to…  

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