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Blog Post #2


Lesotho is a small developing country contained within South Africa. You and your team of academic researchers (10 in all) are spending the next two weeks travelling to different communities throughout Lesotho to test water sources for disease-causing pathogens. The testing you need to do is simple but requires significant assistance from the community – showing your team all the different locations where individuals get their water from, and places/methods for storing the water. You do not see the need to pay the community members, considering if someone asked you about your water source, you would not mind driving them up to the lake! The ultimate goal of the project is to understand the lifecycle and characteristics of a specific pathogen, which is found only in this region of Lesotho. Several publications are expected from this research study. A comprehensive profile of this pathogen can help in many ways including development of chemical additives to make the water safe to drink. Is it ethical to conduct this research study? What will you do next?

Ethical or not?

If we are more transparent and give them more of an education (e.g. pathogens in water, boil water) on what we are doing, then yes. Otherwise, the ethical issue lies in the idea that we are using the locals for their indigenous knowledge and not giving anything back in return. (lack in beneficence )


  • I am an academic researcher expecting several publications out of the research study in Lesotho
  • There are clear signs that Lesotho water has disease causing pathogens 
  • Their methods for storing water are different and uncommon compared to previous knowledge of the research team 
  • Driving the community members up the lake in exchange for information is considered good enough payment – do not expect actual pay
  • We need to rely heavily on indigenous knowledge to move towards a clear problem statement or solution 
  • The research team and I are experts in pathogen/ disease research (health medicine and society)
  • Research funded by an outside source, university/lab/government that expects a clear outcome
  • We are hoping that the chemical additives will make the water safer to drink, but there will be costs involved that we are unsure they can afford 
  • assume all IRB’s have been obtained 
  • Assume we would get assistance from the local community
  • There may be implications of not being able to complete the study (funding, brand, relationships may be affected) – to avoid this, ahead of time, do research on stakeholders

Stakeholders and Motivations

  • University/lab/government (Funding agency)
    • Treat spread of disease
    • Reputation of gaining academic knowledge on pathogen
    • Funding agency will have their name attached to the possible solution
    • More advertising – want to be a world leader in the field – want to build up their brand
    • More partners
  • Research team
    • Help patients involved
    • Further their career and potentially making money 
    • Earn more money to continue doing research and get continuous funding
  • Local people
    • Create healthier living environment 
    • Have safer water to drink
    • Lessen the risk of contracting a disease-causing pathogen
    • Excitement to learn and socialize – but their vulnerability may result in wanting you to hear what you want to hear – they do not want to come off as ignorant – they may reinforce your ideas because they think you’re smart and want to agree. On the other hand, some may be weary to trust an outsider so make sure you talk to the right people 
    • Negotiating entry
    • Cleaner water may lead to more tourism/more business connections 
  • Academic Journal
    • Getting new and credible information that will better their reputation and add to their plethora of knowledge
  • Yourself (Researcher)
    • Help local communities involved
    • (Hopefully) Actual interest/passion for social impact 
    • Understand the lifecycle and characteristics of the pathogen
    • Boost credentials
    • Maintain your job and further career

Alternative Solutions

  • (1)Send prepaid sampling supplies and provide incentives to the people to gather water samples/take surveys seeing where people get water from
    • Pros: Save travelling expenses 
    • Cons: Samples could be taken incorrectly and cause a failure to gather information on the pathogen 
    • Principle:  It’s better to pay the locals to do the work for the research team and help send the samples to us then debating what locals should be paid or compensated that would’ve helped us if we were collecting samples. Therefore time is saved but consequently the study could prove useless ( Consequence Based Thinking)
  • (2) To find water sources on our own without any local assistance 
    • Pros: Removes ethical dilemma regarding the community
    • Cons: could be gathering water where they do not drink from and it could take much longer than if you asked the community
    • Principle: Could ultimately be a waste of time and reduce the credibility of our findings which is not the mission of this research team. The goal of this research team is to further their understanding of a pathogen that is contaminating drinking water.  (Consequence Based Thinking)
  • (3) Have community health workers travel with you during your field work so that there is a trusted person with you to help prevent push back also give incentives to the locals helping you ( ex. education)
    • Pros: allows for beneficence because it provides value for the locals and allows for the research to be conducted with hopefully less push back.
    • Cons: would have to spend more money on bringing that health care worker along and they could still not accept the us are what we are saying
    • Principle:  Duty Based Thinking

Select Best Course of Action: 

  • Integrating some educational compensation satisfies the ethical issue at hand. Since the researchers are entering a foreign county to research a disease causing pathogen some of the locals may not believe in the existence of this disease. Having a the presence of a CHW will help to avoid this road block.
  • The researchers should educate the locals on how to rid their water of this pathogen or educate them on the specific pathogen they are researching, or both
  • Solution 3 ensures all around maximization with a positive social value because it satisfies all stake holders involved and gives the research more credibility even though it requires more money. Unlike solution 1 and 2 solution three upholds ethical values and ensure the rigor of this study is met.
  • The risk is minimized for the all stakeholders except the researches because they still run the risk of push back.
  • Although there is still a potential risk this solution is best because this risk is worth gathering meaningful data
  • Provides social value to the people of Lesotho with relationship/partnership building and collaboration with the university, researchers, and healthcare workers
  • Addresses beneficence when the locals are being benefiting from the research in the short term


  • Potentially improve community health through education of the pathogen
  • the funding agency and university will be viewed as socially responsible both with domestic audience and people of Lesotho because they choose to provide the community with a benefit as well as the CHW
  • Opportunity to market a cleaning solution
  • Adding to knowledge of waterborne pathogens
  • Potential positive or negative environmental implications if a solution is born after this research
  • Building relationships/ partners for future projects

Blog 1 Ethical Decision Making


While trying to develop a low-cost syringe for the developing world context, you (the designer) hit a crossroads. Constructing the syringe to auto-disable after a single use, an important safety feature, significantly adds to the cost of the design – making it potentially unaffordable for some hospitals and clinics. However, if you don’t add the safety feature, you are enabling the potential for the spread of disease. How do you as a designer proceed?


Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation 

  • The syringe needs to be low-cost, reliable, and prevent the spread of diseases
  • The auto-disable safety feature increases the cost of the syringe making it unaffordable for hospitals in developing countries
  • Not including this safety feature would allow for the reuse of syringes  which causes the spread of diseases
  • The syringe is being designed for the developing world which makes the cost an important factor 
  • Auto-disable syringe cannot be reused because the plunger locks once a drug is administered

Ethical Issue: If the Designer decides to make an auto-disable syringe it would allow for safe and low risk administration but many hospitals and clinics in the developing world would not be able to afford the syringe making for a community without necessary healthcare. If the designer leaves out the safety feature medicine will be able to be administered but the risk of spreading diseases becomes much higher.

Step 2: Define the Stakeholders and Motivations- those with a vested interest in the outcome

  • Designers
    • I want to keep the community safe and provide patients with reliable healthcare
    • Build my portfolio and connections
    • Boost Credentials
    • interest in making a positive social impact
  • Hospitals and clinics (administrators)
    • Want to keep allocate resources to health issues that could be avoided
    • Want to keep their patients safe and healthy instead of sending them away more sick
  • Manufacturers/companies that produce the syringe
    • want to keep supplying the hospital with a syringe model so they keep making money
    • keep or build their reputation
    • grow their partnerships with hospitals
  • Patients
    • want affordable health care
    • want to know their shot is reliable and safe
    • want to receive immunizations and drugs with out the risk of receiving other diseases
  • Physicians 
    • will be able to develop a relationship with patients
    • will protect their livelihood with security of knowing they will not penetrate patients with a used syringe

Step 4: alternative solutions

  • (1)Continue Research and Development to find a materials/design that allows for the auto-disable feature to be affordable
    • Pros: There is potential for the auto-disable syringe to be used in the future and there is the potential to reduce the spread of diseases
    • Cons: This option would take more time with no guarantee of a solution, thus time could be wasted. Also while the syringe is being developed, diseases will have a higher potential of spreading through administration
    • Ethical Principle or code : This material would be cheaper than the current material and offset the added costs of the safety feature. This solution allows for administration to occur safely and everywhere which is the duty of hospitals – to provide healthcare to those in need
  • (2) Syringe that Changes color once it is some sort of seal is broken when giving a shot
    • Pros:
      • The syringe would be reusable and prevent the spread of disease
      • It is clear if the syringe has been used or not
      • the hospital will be better able to afford it
    • Cons:
      • the seal could break before use or never be sealed
      • syringes that have their seal broken before use will eventually begin to waste money
      • Could be less effective
      • Can be used by drug users
    • Ethical Principle or code: This solution would prevent the spread of diseases in the hospital but consequently it would not prevent the spread of disease outside of the hospital with drug users.
  • (3)Provide all hospitals and clinics with a device that breaks syringes after use
    • Pros:
      • Would be 100% effective in preventing use if the syringe is broken
      • prevents disease from being spread
    • Cons:
      • Could slow down the time taken to administer shots and dispose of the syringes
      •  Could malfunction and not be able to be broken
    • Ethical Principle or code:  This device would be as cheap as a regular syringe but would require the manufacturing of a device that can break syringes after use which could consequently take more time


Step 5: Seek additional assistance, as appropriate 

Syringes cost roughly 15 to 20 dollars per box of 100 (

Step 6: Select the best course of action

The best course of action would be to provide all hospitals and clinics with a device to break the syringes after administration. This would be best because the cost per syringe does not increase rather a yearly purchase of a device to break syringes would increase. This solution allows for the spread of disease to be prevented in the hospitals and clinics as well as among the community. Thus, this solution allows for wide spread accessibility, safety, and reliability. Comparatively, this solution will cost less than the other two and take less time to develop than the other two solutions. However, this solution can result in extra expenses and time as the health care workers would need to be trained on how to properly break the syringes and the breaking device will cost more money. All in all, solution number three is the best course of action because it preserves the reliability of the original syringe , lowers the potential for the spread of diseases, and requires the least amount of money and time.

Step 7:  What are the implications of your solution on the venture?


This ventures decision has implications technologically, socially, and economically. Technologically this venture allows for affordable syringes to be brought to developing countries and allows for their to be more safety in their health care system. Socially it allows for doctors and hospitals to improve their relationship with patients by telling them they use safe syringes every time they administer shots. This venture will also allow for a positive social impact as all of the stakeholders motivations are being fulfilled. Economically, the lower cost will allow more developing countries to provide safer health care to their patients and allow for more profits over time. Although there will be investment for the breaking device it could be as simple as a pair of sharp scissors which would be cheaper than the auto-disable feature being implemented on every syringe overtime. It will also allow for their economy to keep developing instead of allowing their community to succumb to the diseases that will be passed around. All of these impacts combined together help prove the optimization of solution number 3


Blog for Week 14

1.Refine the detailed income statement for your venture for two years (at six month intervals) or a more appropriate time scale. Explicitly state the assumptions that underlie your financial model. 

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See the assumptions listed in Question 3.


2.Refine the Business Model for your venture based on your revenue model. You may use the Osterwalder BMC to refine your business model but prepare one or more visuals that explain how your venture will work and accomplish your BHAG.


Partner network

  • Shipping/Transportation services


  • UPD
Key Activities

Processing Copra to create value added products

  • Coconut Milk, Flour, Oil, Vinegar, Wine
  • etc.

Increase the income of smallholder filipino coconut farmers by providing them with faster, efficient, and value-added drying systems for their copra.

Customer Relationship

  • Personal Assistance with technology use and finances 
  • User Communities 
Customer Segments

  • Filipino Entrepreneurs
  • Low Income Coconut Farmers
Key Resources

  • Engineers and employees to operate the machinery
  • Machinery required to process coconuts
  • Money to fund R&D
Distribution Channels

  • Local processing plants
  • Farmers
Cost structure

  • Fixed Costs: Communications, Utilities, Transportation, Marketing/Managing Staff
  • Variable Costs: Raw Materials for machinery / value-added product, Shipping, Production costs of product
  • Economies of Scale: Reduce average cost/unit with increased sales due to lower fixed costs.
  • Economies of Scope:  Leverage resources for more operations, Ex. Make more profits by using same machinery for two different value added products, instead of two different machines  
Revenue Streams

  • Asset sales from selling the machine to entrepreneurs in the Philippines (2 Options: $23,999.95 upfront or payback option of $2000  every 2 months over 24 months)  
  • Maintenance Contract (entrepreneurs only), $2799.95 for an annual subscription
  1. Develop an M&E plan for your venture.
  • Clearly list all assumptions.


+Assume that our venture will be launched in 2 years from now

+Assume that the cost of production is $17,000 per machine 

+Assume that we will be able to sell our product at a price of ~$24,000

+Assume that we will be able to scale production

+Assume that 1 machine can impact 100 coconut farmers (entrepreneurs will be able to network to this amount of farmers)

+Assume the copra farmers will want to use our technology

+As of right now we are assuming exponential growth of overhead costs


  • Identify short-term and long-term success metrics.



  • Total number of machines sold
  • Efficiency of the machine (ie. Quality of copra, value-added products produced, robustness)
  • Net profit after one year (*MOST IMPORTANT)


  • Percent increase in average income of copra farmers (*MOST IMPORTANT)
  • Total number of coconut farmers that use the machine
  • Steady growth in number of machines manufactured and sold


  • Identify specific methods to measure the metrics.
  • Track additional income generated for smallholder farmers (method to be determined)
  • Track additional income generated for local entrepreneurs (method to be determined)
  • Track number of machines sold annually
  • Consumer input (from both the entrepreneur and customers of the entrepreneur)
  • Measure volume of products produced 

Blog 13

Develop a detailed income statement for your venture for two years (at six month intervals). Explicit state the assumptions that underlie your financial model.



  1. Identify two SPECIFIC funding sources for the design phase of your project and two SPECIFIC funding sources for the dissemination (implementation / distribution / commercialization) phase of your project. For each funding source, explain why this is a good fit for your project, and what SPECIFIC aspect of your project might the funding source support.


Design Phase:


USAID: $35 Million Water and Energy for Food Challenge (WE4F)

This initiative aims to increase sustainable agricultural and food value-chains, food security, and climate resilience in developing countries and emerging markets – with a focus on the poor and women by investing in small enterprises that work in combinations of food, water, and energy. This grant seems like a good fit to our project because our coconut processing in the Philippines lies in the perfect intersection of energy, water, and technology.



The Global Innovation Fund supports the development of social impact ventures by investing in innovations that aim to improve the lives and opportunities of millions of people in the developing world. This investment is an appropriate fit for our project because our goal is to improve the lives of coconut farmers in the Philippines by generating additional income through the innovation of a new technology that processes value-added coconut products.


Dissemination Phase:


SOW Asia is a charitable foundation based in Hong Kong that supports early-stage social enterprises working to scale their social impact. They have an accelerator program that supports social enterprises by providing investments through opening networks to help build connections and find funds. Their goal and vision is to help local social enterprises attract external funding and become self-sustaining. Due to the fact that SOW Asia is looking to increase impact, we believe that they could be a perfect match for our project when we reach the point where we are ready for dissemination and scaling.


DBS supports over 100 social enterprises in Asia since 2012. They support social enterprises that are looking to scale their business to increase social impact by improving operational capacity, innovation capabilities, and geographical reach. Specifically, they look to support social enterprises that not only have a market validated business product/solution with clear plans to scale up business, but are also committed towards scaling social impact. We believe that once our venture is up and running, financial support from DBS will prove very helpful as we try to scale up.


  1. Identify five specific partnerships that you need to forge to advance your project forward with the ultimate goal of positively impacting at least one million people. Describe exactly how that partnership might help you achieve scale and why that entity might be willing to work with you.


Philippines Coconut Authority (PCA)

PCA is an agency of the Philippine government under the Department of Agriculture mainly responsible for developing the coconut industry to “its full potential in line with the new vision of a united, globally competitive and efficient industry.” The PCA might be willing to work with us, because our goal aligns well with their mission – we aim to develop a novel value-added coconut processing that will improve the livelihood of coconut farmers. If our technology and products are approved and endorsed by the PCA, this will help increase our credibility and improve our product’s marketability. In addition, our partnership with PCA will give us the opportunity to reach out to a rigorous network of coconut companies and, of course, a community of 3.5 million coconut farmers.



Our partnership with UPD will allow us to leverage the proximity of the HEED students working on the project in the Philippines to the copra farmers. Their ability to access stakeholders who can be easily reached in the Philippines will help drive our project forward by allowing us to utilize important stakeholder information without physically being there. This partnership will also provide us with additional research from UPD students and will act as a resource for getting to know specific aspects of the Philippines that influence our project.


The Philippines Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture (PPSA)

PPSA brings together companies, government agencies, civil society organizations, farmer groups, and financial institutions to link smallholder farmers to the market. Their main goal is to improve farmers’ profitability and productivity while increasing environmental sustainability. As our project aims to improve the livelihood of smallholder farmers, partnering with this organization will give us more direct access to the smallholder farmers and allow us to have a larger impact on their lives.


Axelum Resources Corporation 

Axelum Resources Corporation is a Filipino company with a global mindset. They deliver premium products to the global market while maintaining a spirit of communal unity, work, and cooperation. A partnership with Axelum would prove beneficial for both sides. We would trade our processed goods to them, which would provide both sides with security. In addition, by partnering with us they would be able to continue to support local communities as that is part of our mission as well.


Innovation For Social Impact Partnership (isip)


This partnership aims to support innovative social enterprises in the Philippines to collectively contribute to the achievement, acceleration, and sustainability of sustainable development goals. They provide targeted assistance to SE’s in becoming scalable and sustainable ventures that create a positive social change through workshops and mentorship programs. This partnership would be willing to work with us because our goals align and we are also focused on creating a novel, sustainable, and social change for copra farmers in the Philippines.

Blog 12

  1. Refine your Business Model Canvas:

1.Include a Visual Canvas

2.Extremely specific notes for each block


*****LET IT BE KNOWN – We do not have A SPECIFIC PRODUCT in mind yet*****


Partner network

  • Shipping/Transportation services
  • PCA
  • UPD
Key Activities

Processing Copra to create value added products

  • Coconut Milk, Flour, Oil, Vinegar, Wine etc.

Increase the income of smallholder filipino coconut farmers by providing them a faster, efficient, and value-added drying systems for their copra.

Customer Relationship

  • Personal Assistance with technology use and finances 
  • User Communities 
Customer Segments

  • Filipino Entrepreneurs
  • Low Income Coconut Farmers
Key Resources

  • Engineers and employees to operate the machinery
  • Machinery required to process coconuts
  • Money to fund R&D
Distribution Channels

  • Local processing plants
  • Farmers
Cost structure

  • Fixed Costs: Staff Wages, Utilities
  • Variable Costs: Raw Materials for machinery / value-added product, Shipping, Production costs of product
  • Economics of Scales: Reduce average cost/unit with increased sales due to lower fixed costs.
  • Economies of Scope:  Leverage resources for more operations, Ex. Make more profits by using same machinery for two different value added products, instead of two different machines  
Revenue Streams

  • Asset sales from selling the machine to entrepreneurs in the Philippines (2 Options: $349 upfront or payback option of $29 every 2 months over 24 months)  
  • Subscription for maintenance fees (entrepreneurs only), $99 for an annual subscription


3.Explain how exactly you will deliver an end-to-end solution.


We design and manufacture a machine that we then sell to Filipino entrepreneurs, who will then maintain and provide services for farmers at a centralized location.


2.Ten practical lessons from the business (revenue) models of ventures we reviewed today (or others you research) as they relate to your venture.


  1. Envirofit found success by designing devices that are practically price, easy to use, environmentally friendly, and provide health benefits for its users. By doing this they’ve created a desirable product for low income individuals, which is something that we are looking to do.


  1. Envirofit has done an excellent job of getting their product out there. The way they use international distributors and local businesses to get their product to the people that need it is something that we can learn from and apply to our project.


  1. Reel Gardening found success by making their device incredibly easy to use. Our project, along with probably every venture, needs to consider how consumers will use our product and how we can make it easier.

  2. The way Reel Gardening paired their seed strips with an app to provide additional instruction is a great way to integrate simple technology into their design. Additionally, it shows that they’ve put a great deal of thought as to how to optimize user experience, which is something we will need to do when designing our product.


  1. Greyston Bakery’s business model is to crow about hiring people who’ve been marginalized from the workforce. They do not pay attention to what people have done in the past. They are interested in what they’re going to do in the future, and they invest money and support into helping them to be successful into helping them to be successful in the future. 


  1. Greyston Bakery creates a business model such that it both made profits but also contributed positively to the community.


  1. The partnership with Ben & Jerry’s allowed Greyston to transition from a small local business to a supplier for a well-known company. However, Greystone adopts a Benefit Corporation model to allow it to keep implementing its social and environmental agenda. 


  1. This venture was very unique because it was an educational system that allowed the students to be teachers and the teachers to be students. The indigenous knowledge of the Students was then cultivated by the teachers to improve crops on the land, design solar cookers, install solar panels and so on. This example emphasizes the importance of indigenous knowledge which will be very crucial to the success of our final product. 


  1. This method although it was not sustainable as it relied on the grants for materials and construction it created a wealth of knowledge that could be shared and spread to benefit more areas that are similar. Creating a wealth of knowledge that is applicable to other communities is something we hope to replicate when we scale our final product to other communities. 


  1. This venture also focused on empowering women as they can have a huge impact on the progression of a community. Instead of giving women a certificate such as a degree, they are given knowledge to solar electrify homes/entire villages. From the speaker it was mentioned that men generally want a degree and to move to a big city to apply their knowledge whereas the women stay behind. These women can be empowered with knowledge and make an impact on their own community which is a strategy we could use for the low income copra farmers in the Philippines.

Blog Post #11


  • Develop a Business Model for your venture using the Osterwalder Business Model Canvas.


Note: We don’t have a specific product yet, so the following model is made based on our best assumption.


Partner network

  • Shipping/Transportation services
  • PCA
  • UPD
Key Activities

Processing Copra to create value added products


Increase the income of smallholder filipino coconut farmers by improving their access to a faster, efficient, and more effective drying systems for their copra.

Customer Relationship

  • Personal Assistance
  • User Communities 
Customer Segments

  • Filipino Entrepreneurs
  • Low Income Coconut Farmers
Key Resources

  • Engineers and employees to operate the machinery
  • Machinery required to process coconuts
  • Money to operate
Distribution Channels

  • Local processing plants
  • Farmers
Cost structure

  • Risk Management
  • Machinery maintenance
  • Fixed price for machinery
  • Three month subscription for farmers to use the machinery,this subscription could help regulate the amount of copra produced.
Revenue Streams

  • Asset sales 
  • Usage fees, $1 to process 1kg of copra, first three times are free 
  • Subscription fees, $30 for 3 month subscription



  • List ten lessons from the Business and Operations model of the Aravind Eye Hospital.


  1. They got inspired from McDonald’s business model that carry out activities systematically, reproducibly, and to a high quality, consistent standard but at a low cost. 
  2. Aravind has developed a sustainable healthcare delivery model where it generates value for its entire customer but captures the value from part of it. Aravind is capable of providing free, high-quality service for 50-60% for its patients who are poor or “non-paying” by using the profits earned from the 40-50% of the paying patients.
  3. The surgery techniques have been refined to handle high volume of patients without sacrificing the quality. 
  4. The hospitals make their own intraocular lenses, which helps reduce the price significantly.
  5. The clinic provides buses that pick up many people at once early in the morning and drive them back to the community once the day is done. 
  6. The hospital staff is specialized and each person has a role they perform to handle a huge amount of daily input and convert it to output.  
  7. Aravind recruited girls, who should have a high level of empathy and enjoy talking, and trained them to be patient counsellors. The patient counsellors play a vital role in ensuring patient compliance to surgery, medication and regular follow-ups. This not only empowers women but also allows the organization to meet its enhanced target by implementing a more efficient and patient-centric approach. 
  8. They harmonize wireless technology for the provision of eye care. This enables Aravind to screen and provide counselling to patients who are underserved for multiple reasons, including economic and access problems. 
  9. Aravind Eye Care is able to deliver eye care at a significantly lower price when compared to the prices for eye care in the UK.
  10. In India, 200 million people need eye care, yet less than 10% have been reached. 

Blog #9

  1. List five compelling take-aways from the Art of the Start.


  1. Learning to create our own “MAT” – Milestones, Assumptions, and Tasks. This format has allowed us to better understand our goals within the project and as a team. MAT has done this by helping us better divide the tasks needed to get done and making sure the tasks that we accomplish are better geared towards our overall milestones, helping us work more effectively on the project as a team.
  2. The overall topic of “making meaning” was really compelling for us because it relates directly to our project work within the GSIF and how our product has the ultimate goal of increasing the quality of life for coconut farmers in the Philippines. By having the overall goal of increasing their income through a better coconut drying method and system, we found it compelling that our venture’s main focus was to ultimately “make meaning”.
  3. The overall concept and idea that the 10/20/30 (10 slides, 20 minutes, 30 pt. font) rule articulates helped us with crafting our upcoming presentation. Although we have to present over five minutes, and not ten, the overall ideas of keeping the slides concise, with specifics on problem, solution, business model, etc.., and the underlying message of keeping a presentation short and to the point helped us navigate how we wanted to approach presenting. The “30” part also helped to remind us that words should be limited, and instead helpful visuals should be implemented.
  4. Being niche was also a point that Guy Kawasaki emphasized, which we thought was a very important and significant point. The graph that showed us the “ability to provide a unique product or service” and the “value to the customer” was really helpful in terms of helping us rethink our engineering solution and overall business model. In order to separate ourselves from others, we have concluded that having a better, more efficient and effective drying solution and a coop business model will most definitely give us both the ability to provide a unique product or service and a value to the customer.
  5. Adding on to the former point being made, Kawasaki’s slide on defining a business model really helped us understand what is needed to create a more self-sustaining system that would be of benefit for all of our stakeholders. This was especially compelling because this allowed for us to better our idea of the coop business model by being more specific in the systems that would be put in place but also helping us to portray the model simply so others could better understand it. 


  1. Articulate your value propositions for your diverse customer segments. 

In short, we help copra farmers in the Philippines increase their income by creating a faster, efficient, and more effective drying system.

We solve the problem of consistency in copra quality for farmers in the Philippines by creating a system in which farmers can come to a central location to have their copra dried using a faster and more effective drying technique that yields better copra quality. We deliver value in our model’s convenience for farmers, as they do not have to learn to operate the machinery or buy the device themselves, allowing them to dry their coconuts using the machine without experiencing the burden of the high cost of the dryer, and thus reducing risk for the farmers. By placing the plant at a central location between farms, there is high accessibility to the machine as well as reduced risk regarding farmer income due to the method’s all-weather usability. The system is also founded upon a self – sustaining business model, which incorporates a centralized machine, increasing the potential to scale. Farmers will experience less added cost, cheaper prices, and  increased revenue resulting in an improved livelihood. On the buyer’s end, the copra quality will be drastically better and more consistent, allowing them to create higher quality products. In addition, buyer’s will have a centralized location for obtaining copra, resulting in less time wasted, less costs, and therefore better efficiency. 


  1. Discuss your Total Available Market and Total Addressable Market. List all your assumptions and hypothesis


Our total available market is the total population of copra farmers in the Philippines, about 3.5 million. By assuming the bottom-up approach, our total addressable market is 80 percent of coconut farmers within the area of the Philippines.

Week 8 Blog

  1. Summarize and report out on the results of the SKS exercise. 



  • Working more hands on with each other, we were planning on working together to begin prototyping processing techniques (may be unrealistic now given new developments)
  • Keep in better contact with UPD team and other resources on and off campus we can utilize (Maybe assign a communications role to someone)
  • Be more specific in our research efforts (devote our efforts to a common idea)



  • Communicating with each other
  • Weekly debriefs (notes and agendas really help)
  • Focusing our research efforts on copra processing
  • Keep bringing positive energy
  • Stay on top of things as much as possible 



  • Stop researching for the sake of researching, all focus on one pathway, or maybe even like evaluating what we need, what we have, and therefore what pathway we need to go towards
  • In-person meeting → Need to set up a virtual meeting that works for all of us. Make sure everyone is motivated and feels supportive too.
  • Getting snacks for each other when we’re late bc it’s “hard” to know who’s late. Instead, Ami sometimes brings snacks for all us, which is appreciated :)), but now with this remote environment, snacks are going to be less accessible 

2. Develop a detailed Collaboration Plan for your team clearly articulating your Goals (Small g and Big G), Roles,Procedures, and Relationships.



Team Name: COPDRY                                                                            Date: 03/20/2020
Goals Personal goals:


Make as much useful contribution as possible, positively influence the group, create strong relationships, Improve my 

group work skills, research ability, and engineering mindset. Then I hope to use all these personal improvements to make a

social impact that matters.


Become a well-rounded researcher who can advance the knowledge of humanity and at the same time apply my knowledge and experience to make a social impact.

Build life-long friendship with peers at Lehigh and those in the Philippines


Learn how to conduct meaningful, professional research that will help move our project forward. Help to develop a solution that encompasses all aspects of the problem at hand. Improve how I conduct myself in a professional setting (including public speaking and presenting in front of large audiences). Practice and improve designing and engineering skills and build and expand my professional network.


Gain experience in conducting meaningful research and working on an interdisciplinary team. Make valuable contributions to move the project forward and create sustainable impact. Improve my interpersonal skills and develop a new mindset 


Contribute to the project in a meaningful way, understanding my own strengths and weaknesses , and learning how I can efficiently and effectively work within a diverse team. Help to better enforce communications within the team and outside the team, and become a better researcher and writer. Improve my own hard and soft skill sets including communications, and better understanding design thinking, engineering design, and supply chain.

Project Goal:

The project aims to improve copra processing and process streamlining for elevating the livelihoods of copra farmers by generating additional income.

Is our Project Goal scaled to our resources (dreams, materials, skills, differences, etc.) and constraints (assignment, time, skills, etc.)?

As a team, we have the given resources and knowledge needed to design and prototype a device that can better process copra. Unfortunately, due to given circumstances, our access to both each other and the tools required are constraining the timetable for which this project will operate on.  

Since COPRA is a multi-year project, we as a team will lay up a strong foundation so that we can transfer the knowledge to other teams. The hope is that future teams will be able to scale upon the ideas and designs we come up with throughout this year.


Metrics for Success

    • Design, energy efficiency, and sustainability of the processing technique
    • Amount of high-quality copra that can be produced using new methods
    • Amount of additional income that can be generated for copra farmers
    • Scalability and Sustainability of the business model (can we actually get people to use this)
Roles Who is responsible for which deliverables?

  • All of the team members will be responsible for all of the deliverables until further notices regarding the format of the presentations and posters
  • Our project is still in the very early stages, it is likely every group member will be contributing to the same deliverables at this point in time

Which deliverables that require collaboration, subgroups & individual work? Who does each person depend upon to succeed?


  • Presentation – Collaboration
  • Poster for the lehigh expo – Sub group/ Collaboration
  • Preliminary Design Concepts – Sub group/Collaboration
  • Testing Data – Sub group/Individual
  • Final report – Collaboration

Do we need a project manager to coordinate? 

  • Yes, we do need one. However, specific to our group, we decide to rotate our project manager once every three weeks so that everyone has a chance to step up and take responsible for the group’s success
  • We realize the importance of having a manager to help organize and coordinate group work and research, but believe that having a rotating leadership position helps alleviate the stress from one individual
Procedures Decision-making 

  • Consensus, our group has had very few disagreements
    • If consensus can’t be achieved we will default to majority rules/the advice of our project advisor

Effective meetings

  • We’ve conducting weekly meetings (along with multiple weekly sub meetings) to keep everyone on track and updated with all the key information regarding our project
    • Before each meeting we lay out an agenda to increase efficiency of meetings and help steer the conversation in the right direction
    • We write weekly briefs (in accordance with our TE 211 course work) to keep documented records on what work and research we do each week
  • We plan to continue holding these weekly meetings over Zoom at the same time and in the same fashion
  • Keep track of time during meetings
  • At the end of every meeting we make sure to assign weekly work to each group member to ensure that we can hold each other accountable

Meeting roles

  •  During meetings the leader will facilitate the meeting and assign a different scribe for each meeting.
  • The leader role will be rotated every 3 weeks


  • Up until this week we had planned, in person meetings once a week on Fridays from 3:00 – 4:00 PM
    • Given the situation we will transition our weekly meetings to Zoom. They will continue to be held at the same time
Relationships Teamwork

  • Our team has been very agreeable up to this point – we’ve had few disagreements if any
    • Our assumption is that transitioning to video chatting as our primary form of communication will not be a problem
  • We’re all engineers, meaning we all tend to learn through hands on experiences
    • We have backgrounds in Materials Science Engineering, Mechanical Engineerings, Industrial Systems Engineering and Product Design
    • The team also consists of different backgrounds such as athletics, international, cultural, and greek life.
    • We have different interests outside of engineering: make-up and sports, band music, music composition, nature, and chess.

Listening – As team we enter group meetings with an open mindset and are ready listen to each other 

Team Name– Copdry / Copra Processing


Blog #6

  1. Does your work require IRB approvals? If Yes, articulate your detailed IRB strategy. If No, explain why you don’t need IRB approval and identify situations when you might need IRB approval. 


We decided that our project needs IRB approval (exempt status). Specifically, our project falls into Exempt Category 2: Surveys, interviews, educational tests, and public observations.


Our project meets the definition of research; we are performing a systematic investigation which will include testing and evaluating copra dryers. While researching, we will indeed further generalizable knowledge pertaining to the coconut industry. 


In order to get a better sense of what our design really needs to be, we will be talking to and questioning human subjects. Most of the information that we will be collecting will not be personal or private; we want to know about their agricultural practices. Essentially, we want to know how they conduct their work so we can better fit our design to their needs. In order to gauge the success of our project, we may need to gather information regarding income, to measure how much additional income our processing technique is generating. We might interview Filippino family households, therefore, we might need to get informed consent. We will have to consider whether our informed consents will be conducted in Filippino instead of English and how the process of obtaining signed informed consent looks like in the Philippines.


The research we are conducting on human subjects involves little to no risk at all. The product we are designing is to be used by the people we are researching, not on them. The product causes no physical injuries or mental distress to stakeholders. 


We’ll also need to apply for Philippines Ethics Board if necessary:


  1. Develop an outline for your mid-semester presentations. What supporting evidence will you provide for each point? How will you boost your credibility every step of the way?


Time: 5 minutes → Number of slides to present: <10. Number of slides to back-up for questions part: 10-15? 


Strategy: simple story, go to product quickly, make sure to build up credibility as well.




“How long does it take to dry your hair in the morning? We can all agree that the faster you can dry your hair the better. Incidentally, the same is true for drying coconut meat into copra.”

  • Connect drying coconuts with a process people do daily

[Slide 1]: Define the overall problem using facts (3.5 million coconut farmers, earn less than $2/day) – small landowner farmers aren’t making enough money

  • Explain problems with current drying techniques and how it is hurting farmers
    • The dryers being take multiple days, are susceptible to molds and bacterial growth, and produce inconsistently dried copra (facts here)
  • Explain problems with the copra/coconut market and how that is hurting farmers
    • Lack of consistency in the moisture content of copra produced by small landowner farmers is causing a lot of pricing issues, thus causing market problems (facts here)

[Slide 2]: Discuss and display potential designs/solutions – explain how our product is avoiding problems found in current drying techniques

  • Target specifications – potential prototypes that we have

[Slide 3]: Discuss partners / Stakeholders that are involved with the project: list stakeholders and emphasize on our connection with UPD (credibility boost).

  • Explain how UPD has already been doing research for half a year and has connections on the ground over there with valuable stakeholders (farmers)

[Slide 4]: Explain the potential scalability – Whatever we make in the Philippines has a high likelihood of being replicable in other coconut producing countries (fact here)

[Slide 5]: We are working closely with a group of students from UPD to design/prototype a device that processes and produces higher quality copra in the Philippines 

[Slide 6]: Introduce the team, major, name, connect experience with project

Blog Post #5

  • List ten things that make you feel human
    • Love, Although animals feel love as well a humans love is much different and it is a very powerful and dangerous thing
    • Science, the nature of science simply reminds me I’m human because of how many things makeup life and that I am just a small part of that world
    • Outer Space, mostly because my body would not be able to survive space conditions I feel human but it also makes me feel human because I can’t even wrap my mind around how big it is yet there is the possibility that there is more out there than we know of
    • Sports, sports make me feel human because of the countless mistakes and imperfections that occur during training and competition. Many times I walk away from a competition thinking if I could only have done this one thing better I would have thrown father but after all we are only human and we cant do everything right. Track specifically makes me feel human because I am a thrower and my singular goal is to throw the farthest and because I am human I can’t just walk out there and try my hardest and expect to throw far with or without training because that’s not how the human body works and it takes time and practice to execute my event properly no matter how strong I am
    • Nature (animals), because we operate differently than they do when it comes to offspring
    • Fire, we are the only species who use fire to cook and prepare food
    • Mental Health, This makes me feel human because of how far our powerful  minds can bring us up or down
    • College, the number of times I have failed miserably at this school makes me feel human because humans make mistakes and I am one that makes a lot of mistakes
    • Family,
    • weather, weather can stop us from driving cars, going to school or sports events but it doesn’t stop nature unless it is very severe
    • ocean, so much of the ocean hasn’t even been explored yet and it reminds me of how there are so many things much bigger than me
  • Articulate Your Philosophy of engagement as it pertains to your work with GSIF

Currently, majority of the copra farmers in the Philippines live on two dollars a day which is very poor. Although copra has many uses and is an expensive product the people who are providing these good somehow are very poor. This is why I should engage in developing a solution to streamline the process of drying coconuts so that farmers could yield higher quality copra while producing it at a faster rate and in-turn increase their income. Due to the cultural differences, my engagement with the Filipino people has to be well thought out. It would be ideal if I could mold myself to their culture for the time I am there so that communication will be clear and understood by both parties. It is also imperative that I am direct with the farmers I speak to while I am in-country and clearly communicate that whatever solution I am bringing to them most likely won’t immediately make their lives better or at all for that matter. The Filipino farmers and the UPD students will be the main group of people we talk to while we are in-country. For this communication to be effective I must speak slowly and refrain from slang or local terms that I use while in America. If I don’t do this I will just confuse the people I am talking to which could slow the rate of progress which we can’t afford because we will only be there for three weeks. I will face more challenges than I can imagine during this project and while I am in the Philippines. The challenges that stand out to me and are the most important is gathering useful research, communicating with Filipino people while out of the country and in-country, and making continuous progress. These challenges are important to recognize because they help to shape where the project should be going and how we should be doing it. Although there are challenges, we also have amazing opportunities. We get the chance to learn a lot about our project ourselves, other people at Lehigh as well as the Filipino culture. We also are given an opportunity to make an impact but that impact depends on how much we pour ourselves into the project. We will have the opportunity to grow as a person and develop critical skills that are not taught in the classroom and lastly, we will be able to travel to another country and learn how to work there. The approaches that are necessary during this time consist of remaining organized and being accountable, maintaining good communication with the UPD team, and adjusting to their culture to ensure efficiency.


I would hope my epitaph might read something like “Her heart was big for change and her mind filled with innovation. She left an inspiring pathway of change and a mark on peoples hearts”

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