A university course module focusing on innovation for humanitarian needs and international development cooperation designed by sWASH&grow, is currently open for applications. The course will be offered by Malmö University in collaboration with Parlametric AB.
The aim is to develop tools that improve the opportunities for innovators and aid organizations to bring more circular, inclusive and sustainable innovations to those in need. A key priority is to build the capacity to develop tangible solutions, market-relevant products and enable innovators to bring their ideas to fruition.
The course is structured into two modules. Read more and apply below.
Idea to Concept
Global Product Development I is for students and professionals (in engineering or related disciplines) who want to gain a broad understanding of how to develop products that can be successfully applied in challenging environments. It also addresses how technology can be part of reaching the UN’s global goals for sustainable development. The context of the course is humanitarian operations and international development, where complexity is a core challenge to achieve results.
The course combines case studies with lectures. Lectures will provide broad insights into the technical as well as social and economic challenges in product development. These insights are continuously applied in case studies. Participants will also be part of a team with the task to develop an idea into a concept of a technical solution that can be applied to solve a real-life challenge in a low- or mid-income country.
Concept to Prototype
Global Product Development II is for students and professionals (in engineering or related disciplines) who want to further develop their product development and project management skills. The course allows you to apply your knowledge and skills to problems in challenging environments, with an emphasis on humanitarian and international aid.
This course is designed to address technology companies’ and development organizations’ increasing need for engineers with skills to handle complexity and work in challenging environments. It builds on strong connections to the industry, which will improve the participants’ opportunities to get a relevant job in aid and with international innovation companies.
During the course participants will work in teams to address an actual development challenge in a low- or mid-income country. The purpose is to develop a prototype that can be effectively implemented. They will receive continuous feedback from development experts and managers from companies and organizations with similar challenges. Partners in this course include RISE Research Institutes of Sweden and Urban Technology Sweden.
East Africa as a case study
The course uses two development case studies: Acholiland in Northern Uganda and Rama, Tigray in Ethiopia.
The case study in Tigray, Ethiopia, focuses on water solutions for farming.
The course aims to develop and promote a combination of innovative climate smart agricultural technologies and practices, that respond to the challenges and opportunities faced in the Ethiopian semi-arid regions related to food security, integrity of (agro)ecosystems and water management. This is based on an Integrated Watershed Management approach at sub regional scale level, while developing pathways that build-up social capital and the institutional frameworks required.
As securing water for food is a big challenge for social and economic development in the country, students in this course are tasked with designing off-grid solutions to address methods of enhancing water use efficiency to considerably expand agricultural productivity in the Tigray region, which currently has limited water resources.
The case study in Acholiland, Northern Uganda, focuses on sanitation for school children.
The long-term goal is to fulfill girls’ and boys’ right to water and provide adequate sanitation and hygiene conditions in rural Uganda. The course also aims to build trust among partners, strengthen ”out of the box” thinking and strengthen the WASH innovation ecosystem in Uganda. Phase II of the course focuses on addressing structural WASH problems to achieve sustainable results. In addition, regional cross-learning knowledge transfer and networking is enhanced in East Africa in order to scale up innovations and enable south – south learning.
Students in this course are tasked to design a concept for innovative solutions that address WASH needs for school children or other vulnerable groups in the rural areas of Acholiland, Northern Uganda.
In the long-run, the innovation model will be private-sector-driven, allowing development of new market-based solutions. Universities will support the SMEs by for instance, creating new ideas, concepts, research and conducting tests with the children.