UNDP Trinidad and Tobago Accelerator Lab,
serving Aruba, Curaçao, Sit Maarten, Suriname and Guyana
Driving development through collaboration and overcoming barriers to change.
The UNDP Trinidad and Tobago Accelerator Lab serves Aruba, Curaçao, Sint Maarten, Suriname and Guyana. The primary focus of the Accelerator Lab in 2021 was Green Economy Transformation with a specific focus on small enterprises operating both formally and informally at the grassroots, entrepreneurial level. Through an Innovation Challenge, which attracted over 100 applicants, the Lab identified the most promising green projects and engaged them through capacity development and provided funding to produce prototypes. Public interest was generated through the creation of promotional videos dedicated to each project. Our work attracted up to 20,000 views in Trinidad and Tobago alone. The projects generated by the challenge are the foundation of the Accelerator Lab’s on-going portfolio of innovative experiments in sustainable development. The portfolio includes: Climate Smart Agriculture for rehabilitating of prisoners at the women’s prison and for reducing prison operating costs; Youth Employment through mobile, water-efficient carwashes; and Converting Organic Waste into cosmetics and compost.
The Lab also designed, developed, and piloted an interactive digital map of the Green Innovation Ecosystem, to enhance interconnectedness and collaboration among stakeholders. The map is currently in its testing phase.
The Lab’s partnership with the UNDP Chief Digital Office is having significant impact. The Lab is leading the deployment of Digital Readiness Assessments (DRA) for the Governments of Curaçao, Suriname, and in Trinidad and Tobago. The DRA is a rapid evaluation of a country’s policies, strategies, infrastructure and people to determine what the next steps should be to transition into a more digitally advanced society.
The Accelerator Lab also provides critical technical support to the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago in violence prevention and peacebuilding initiatives and has spearheaded the Peace Innovation Challenge, which will identify, and support initiatives developed by youth with the greatest potential to build lasting peace within at-risk communities.
We would like to thank our partners for their collaborative work with the UNDP Accelerator Labs. Building and strengthening alliances is the core of UNDP and the Accelerator Labs’ model. Please reach out if you are interested in partnering with us, we would love to hear from you.