Archive of ‘Uncategorized’ category

Blog #5

Team: COPRA

Members: Ami Yoshimura, Michelle Hu, Sammantha Powers, Jake Donoghue, Brianna Wanbaugh, Tri Nguyen, Brianna Cimaglia, Rozhin Zahrouni

 

Top 20 FAQs and Answers

 

 

  • What happens to the middlemen if you eliminate them in the supply chain? (Ami)

 

A: At this stage, we don’t have a concrete answer yet, because we are still in the development phase of our products. 

 

 

  • What is the scale of the coconut farms in the Philippines? (Tri)

 

A: The majority of coconut farms are small to medium sized (around 5 hectares / 40 – 100 trees per farm).

 

 

  • How will you implement your product in the Philippines? (Sammy)

 

A: We are not yet sure at this stage, as we do not currently have a definite business model since we are still developing our product. 

 

 

  • How do you know that there aren’t better antioxidants out there that are just as effective or more than the antioxidants that you are using now? (Rozhin)

 

A: We have done extensive research on many different potential antioxidants and have read many scientific articles and journals on them before coming into our conclusion of the top antioxidants for us to use on our experiments. Unfortunately, there is no way for us to know about all of the potential antioxidants that exist, however, we believe that from our research we have found the best ones that are available and cost-effective.

 

 

  • What are some of the current solutions to the aging tree problem in the Philippines? (Bri C)

 

A: There are replanting, intercropping, and education programs designed by the Philippines Coconut Authority to address these challenges.

 

 

  • How do you make sure the coconut farmers will benefit from your solution? (Tri)

 

A: We will provide coconut farmers the cost-effective technology to produce high-quality copra and higher-value added products that they can sell directly at a higher price, which will earn the farmers additional income.  

 

 

  • To what extent do coconut farmers have access to energy? (Tri)

 

A: It is noted that 6.1 million households (half of the rural population) have no electricity in the Philippines. Our investigation suggests that more than 30% of coconut farmers do not have access to the power grid.

 

 

  • How will this solution be sustainable? (Brianna W)

 

A:  We hope to partner with a company based in the Philippines that can continue to aid and distribute our solution after we leave the Philippines

 

 

  • How successful are efforts to address the aging tree problem? (Bri C)

 

A: The PCA has established a few programs to address this issue, but many of them are purely informational with little execution and direct aid to farmers. These programs have certainly helped inform farmers about the issues, but there has not been significant change.

 

 

  • How long will this copra & antioxidant experiment take? (Rozhin)

 

A: This is a two part experiment that has been started from July, however, since it was decided that better results were needed with improved procedure plans, the experiment will be restarting during the fall semester and will most likely finish before the end of the semester depending on the results found.

 

 

  • What do you expect to see in your experiments and what is the goal of the experiments? (Jake)

 

A: On the engineering side, the experiments are set up with the goal of optimizing air flow inside the drying chamber. We expect to gather data that will allow us to decide whether we should utilize horizontal or vertical airflow moving forward.

 

 

  •  What are your next steps for the venture? (Ami)

 

A: The next steps entail testing antioxidant solutions, prototyping the dryer, and submitting research proposals to a few conferences. 

 

 

  • What are you doing in your experiments currently and what is next? (Jake)

 

A: We are constructing benchmark prototypes of our drying chambers and comparing the effectiveness of horizontal vs. vertical airflow on drying time. The goal is still to uniformly dry all the coconut meat in the drying chamber as fast as we can, so whichever method works better is what we will include in our drying design moving forward. Once we have identified the optimal air flow method, we will move to experimenting and designing our heating source and heat exchange mechanisms. 

 

 

  • Why are you doing this experiment and how do these antioxidants work on the copra? (Rozhin)

 

A: The current problem is the copra browning which reduces their financial value because of their unappealing visual quality, even if they are safe to consume and use even for other means. The browning of the copra occurs from a chemical reaction from its exposure to oxygen, known as enzymatic browning. The enzyme that plays the major role in this chemical reaction is called Polyphenol Oxidase (PPO) and another major enzyme that contributes to the enzymatic browning and is involved with the internal browning is called Peroxidase. Therefore, this reaction can be prevented from occurring through the application of higher acidity (pH<4), which lowers the chances of oxidation of the food and causing the enzymatic reaction to occur. Moreover, the copra also needs to have antimicrobial protection, so that they can last longer and prevent spoiling. Since the best antioxidants that we have chosen from our research are both acidic and have antimicrobial properties (which we also plan on combining the best ones together to create an even stronger antioxidant preservative), they are one of the best natural and cost-effective preservation methods for us to use on the copra.

 

 

  • Why are natural antioxidants being used instead of cheaper alternatives? (Rozhin)

 

A: Natural antioxidants are the best materials to use as preservatives of copra as this will make it safe and have no/less harmful side effects than other chemical or other cheaper alternatives. Natural antioxidants are the next best option, from their effective protection against oxidation and microbes, in comparison to more expensive preservation treatments (e.g. freeze drying), so they are the best option considering their ease of access, effectiveness, and reduced cost.

 

 

  • How do you imagine implementing these antioxidants into the supply chain and how will the farmers gain access to them? (Rozhin)

 

A: We are still in the process of determining which antioxidants will be used for preservation, so we have yet to know the full logistics of when and how they will be incorporated into the supply chain. We imagine that the antioxidants will be either sold to the farmers in packages or the farmers will be taught how to make those antioxidants treatment themselves (depending on the antioxidants chosen as preservatives).

 

 

  • How will the optimal antioxidants be integrated into the engineering team’s product? (Sammy) 

 

A: The antioxidants will be included in the drying and preserving process, though we are not sure exactly how until we discover more through our experiments. We are still determining if the antioxidants will be put on the copra before or after drying, and if they will be included as a part of our product, or if they will be sold separately.

 

 

  • How will you be able to scale this effectively? (Ami)

 

A: By improving one niche/aspect of the drying process and building a better drying solution with affordable materials, accessibility will be easier. We also have connections in the Philippines who could help with distribution. 

 

 

  • How likely is it that farmers will take to this kind of solution? (Jake)

 

A: This is something that we still need to figure out. Given that our project is in early stages, and that we have not been able to conduct field work, it has been rather difficult to gauge interest in our ideas. 

 

 

  • Why are we choosing the specific antioxidants we are using?  (Michelle)

 

A: All the specific antioxidants  we are using are all cost effective so it will not be another hardship on the farmers. Also all of these antioxidants do not affect the taste of the copra or the texture and they are accessible.

Blog #4

Part 1: Ethical Decision-Making In a certain region of East Africa, the growth of ~35% of the children is stunted due to poor nutrition. Traditionally, maize and bananas are the items most commonly made into a gruel and fed to infants beginning at ~2 months of age. The gruel is integrated into a child’s diet to complement breastfeeding until they are ~24 months of age. Mothers in the area firmly believe that the gruel is highly beneficial for their children, but scientific research has shown that it does not provide some key nutrients. HIV/AIDS is very prevalent in this region. The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding until an infant is six months of age, but the longer a child nurses when the mother is HIV+, the greater the chance that the virus will be transmitted to the child. You have received a grant to establish a women’s cooperative in this region. The donor’s intent is to simultaneously improve the nutritional status of children and improve the livelihoods of rural households. The grant for the women’s cooperative has sufficient funds for the women’s group to process and market a nutritious, shelf-stable porridge made from a large mix of locally grown produce. The nutritious porridge is intended to wean children off of breast milk at about 6 months of age. Approximately 500 women from three contiguous sub-locations have indicated their interest in joining the cooperative, in hopes of improving their livelihoods. However, they are skeptical of the porridge and its use as an early weaning food. Cash crops as well as subsistence crops are grown in the area, including maize, sorghum, cassava, several varieties of legumes (dried beans), French beans, coffee, pineapple, bananas, pumpkins, tomatoes, carrots, kale, white (Irish) potatoes, and sweet potatoes. Pesticides are typically used in growing some of these crops and can result in adverse health implications for infants.

 

How would you address the ethical health issues associated with prolonged breastfeeding in an area where there is a high prevalence of HIV/AIDS and few women are tested for the virus, very early introduction of supplemental foods to the diets of infants, and the possibility of pesticide residues in foods developed for infants and young children. What are your next specific steps to develop this cooperative? 

 

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible 

  • ~35% of the children in East Africa is stunted due to poor nutrition
  • The current gruel used to complement breastfeeding is not nutritionally adequate according to scientific research, but the moms believe the gruel is nutritious.
  • WHO recommends breastfeeding until an infant turns 6 months
  • The longer the child nurses when the mother is HIV+, the higher the chance of them contracted with HIV.
  • The donor who gave us the grant intent is to build up the women’s cooperative to simultaneously improve the nutritional status of children and improve the livelihoods of rural households
  • The grant has sufficient funds for a nutritious, shelf-stable porridge made from locally grown produce
  • The porridge is intended to wean children off of breastfeeding at the age of 6 months
  • The 500 women are skeptical of the porridge as a weaning food because it is too new (not something they’re accustomed to in their daily lives)
  • Pesticides are typically used in growing the crops used in the porridge
  • Assumption: not all women are aware of the adverse health effects resulting from the pesticides used in the crops to make the porridge
  • The area has a high prevalence of HIV/AIDS and very little testing

 

Ethical issue: Currently, mothers in the region combine breastfeeding with a non-nutritious maize and banana gruel for the first 24 months of their child’s life. HIV/AIDS is highly prevalent in this region, is not tested on a widespread scale, and can be transmitted through breastfeeding. Our job is to establish a cooperative that will work to give mothers a nutritional porridge that they can use to wean their children off of breastmilk at around 6 months. The problem is, some of the ingredients in this porridge are grown using pesticides, which could result in pesticide residues in the porridge itself. The ethical issue here is deciding whether to go ahead and feed these 6 month old children pesticide grown food, or to continue having the mothers feed their children breast milk with the risk of transmitting HIV.

 

Step 2 & 3: Define the stakeholders – those with a vested interest in the outcome. Determine and distinguish between the personal and professional motivations of the stakeholders.

 

Stakeholders:

  • Breastfeeding Moms:
    • Professional Motivation: N/a 
    • Personal Motivation: The mothers want to be providing their babies with the best nutrients while keeping them safe 
  • Woman joining the co-op
    • Professional Motivation: sell as much porridge as possible to the community (build up the co-op), make the best and safest product (porridge), educate breastfeeding mothers, make money.
    • Personal Motivation: help their own babies stay healthy, help their neighbors.
  • Babies
    • Professional Motivation: N/a 
    • Personal Motivation: Want to minimize their risk of contracting HIV and still intake their required nutrients.
  • Farmers 
    • Professional Motivation: produce as much of their crop for community consumption as possible, make money (maximize profit), collaborate with the women in the cooperative 
    • Personal Motivation: help the community stay healthy (provide the best crops)
  • Grant Donor (secondary stakeholder)
    • Professional Motivation: Have good reputation of making good deeds, want their money to be allocated wisely and productively for meaningful purposes
    • Personal Motivation: Want  women in the area to be healthier and have their livelihood improved
  • Doctors
    • Professional Motivation: Would want HIV cases to go down and  would want to allocate their resources and knowledge to other patients with other illnesses  
    • Personal Motivation: Prevent the amount of infants they see with HIV/Malnutrition
  • Us (researchers establishing the co-op)
    • Professional Motivation: To start a successful and sustainable co-op what will also enhance our skill sets and credibility, build up good record and establish their credibility for future fundings and resources 
    • Personal Motivation: Want to improve the livelihoods of women and children in the arena 

 

Step 4: Formulate (at least three) alternative solutions – based on information available, to have a win-win situation for your relationship and your venture.

Potential solution 1: Form the cooperative. Educate the mothers the dangers of breastfeeding children while being HIV+. After six months, have them wean their children off breastmilk with the porridge (without telling them the potential harms from the pesticides).

 Ethical Principle or code: Consequence-Based Thinking because we will be able to convince more women to use the porridge by not telling them about possible harms of pesticides. By “hiding” some negatives we will be able to stop breastfeeding earlier and prevent more cases of HIV in children.

Pros

  • The babies will have a smaller chance of contracting HIV from their mothers
  • Moms are more likely to switch to the porridge if they think that it is more nutritious than the cruel without any side effects. 

Cons: 

  • We are not telling the mother about the negative effects of the pesticides in the porridge so there is a chance that the porridge will affect the babies negatively in some way.
  • It is also unethical for researchers to not inform women the side effects of the porridge that was developed specifically for their children.
  • HIV+ education to the women and locals cost time and resources 

Potential solution 2: Form the cooperative to educate the Mothers the dangers of breastfeeding children while being HIV+. After six months, have them wean their children off breastmilk with the porridge, and tell them the potential harms from the pesticides.

Ethical Principle or code: Duty Based Thinking because we are doing the right thing, and most ethic thing by giving the women ALL the facts we have. We are telling them all the positives and negatives of breastfeeding and the porridge.

 Pros

  • Mothers understand the dangers of HIV transmission through breastfeeding
    • Reduces the number of children with HIV
  • Mothers know when to begin feeding their children the porridge, the potential harms, and the nutritional benefits of the porridge
    • Reduces Malnutrition

Cons

  • The decisions now depend on the mothers’ intuition, which can go either way
  • The children still face the risk of contracting HIV+
  • The children are now at risk (if their mothers use the porridge) to the harms of pesticide residue in the food they consume

Potential solution 3: Form the cooperative to educate the Mothers the dangers of breastfeeding children while being HIV+. After six months, have them wean their children off breastmilk with the porridge that has gruel in the recipe, and tell them the potential harms from the pesticides.

 

Ethical Principle or code: Duty Based Thinking (for same reason as above) + Care Based Thinking because we are taking into account the personal relations with the women who prefer to use the guel and feel comfortable with it. 

 Pros:

  • The mothers will be more comfortable using an ingredient they trust in their new food supplement
  • the risk of the babies contracting HIV will reduce

Cons:

  • The mothers might be hesitant because there is still a risk associated with using the porridge.
  • Adding gruel to the recipe might reduce the nutritional values of the original recipe, which might impose negative implications on the children’s growth and development. 

Step 5: Seek additional assistance, as appropriate – engineering codes of ethics, previous cases, peers, reliance on personal experience, inner reflection.

Step 6: Select the best course of action – that which satisfies the highest core ethical values. Explain reasoning and justify. Discuss your stance vis-a-vis other approaches discussed in the class.

  • Solution number 3 is ideal because unlike solution one and two it incorporates an ingredient into their children’s diet that they are comfortable with
  • Solution number three also allows the mothers to be aware if the downsides of this porridge
  • Although Solution one would allow for the least amount of push back from the mothers when encouraging them to use porridge it is not ethical
  • Solution 2 allows for the most push back from the mothers because it tells them the dangers of using the porridge and does not include any known ingredients that they like to feed their babies therefore it is the least appealing option
  • Ultimately, solution three allows for the least amount of push back in an ethical way making it the ideal solution

Step 7: (If applicable) What are the implications of your solution on the venture. Explain the impact of your proposed solution on the venture’s technology, economic, social and environmental aspects.

  • Socially this venture would allow for a healthier community/families as the chance of their babies contracting HIV would decrease
  • It will also allow for the mother to build a community with other mothers
  •  a sense of community could also be built between the local farmers, mothers, and the researchers
  • Environmentally there could be a higher demand for the crops they locally grow which means more pesticides will be used which is bad for the environment as they wash into water streams
  • Economically the farmers could see and increase in their profits due to more mothers using the porridge
  • Economically it will allow for the community of mothers to generate funds to help support their families and feed their children
  • It will also allow for them to out money back into their harvesting and cooking tactics which would allow for a technological increase

Part 2: Grassroots Diplomacy Six months after launch, the efforts of the women working in the cooperative you established are paying off, and business is thriving. The women work for about nine hours every day and earn KES 300 (about $3). Besides the wages earned, they have the opportunity to sell the produce grown on their small farms to the cooperative. This transaction is done at the prevailing market rate and helps the women make a little money on the side. The women like this arrangement because it saves them a trip (time + money) to the village market to sell their produce. The women enjoy working with each other and are happy with the cooperative; they have a strong sense of community and identity. However, there is one big problem. When a woman brings her hard earned money home, she has no choice but to turn it over to her husband, father, or brothers. Rather than using the money to support their families, the men waste it on alcohol and frivolous things. Though the cooperative is thriving, it is not achieving the twin social outcomes of improving the nutritional status of children and the livelihoods of rural households. As the entrepreneur who helped establish the cooperative, you are pained about the situation. Though you are loved and respected by the entire community, you do not have a direct say in the cooperative’s functioning. You are one of the seven members of the leadership committee that oversees all operations. The committee is elected on an annual basis and you have six months left on the committee, after which you will practically leave the cooperative completely. The other six members of this committee are local women who understand the problems and want things to change. They are not necessarily opposed to the men taking away their money but are upset that their hard-earned money is not used to feed their children. They are convinced that nothing can be done about it because that’s just the way it works in their community. What is your strategy to get the cooperative back on track to meet the twin social outcomes for the cooperative on a sustainable basis? 

 

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible 

  • The cooperative has been thriving for 6 months
  • The women can sell the produce grown on their farm to the cooperative for additional income.
  • The women work for nine hours a day and make 3$ 
  • The women like this arrangement because it saves them money and time 
  • The women enjoy working together and are happy with the co-op
  • The women have to give their money to their husband father or brother
  • The money the women make gets wasted on alcohol/frivolous things
  • The twin social outcomes of improving the nutritional status of children and the livelihoods of rural households are not achievable right now
  • You as the entrepreneur will leave the cooperative’s committee (you and other 6 local women) after 6 months. 
  • The entrepreneur does not have direct say in the in the co-ops functioning
  • Assumption: not all 500 women of the cooperative will work on growing the produce.
  • The women are upset that their hard earned money is not used to feed their children

 

Ethical issue:  Although the cooperative is thriving the goals of the cooperative are not being met because the women are loosing their hard-earned money to the men in their household when they return home from work. The women are upset because they wish their money would be allocated to feeding their family instead of on frivolous things. Therefore you as the entrepreneur cannot truly say your co-op is thriving until it is reaching its original goals and the money issue is addressed. 

Step 2 &3: Define the problem and the stakeholders – those with a vested interest in the outcome. Determine and distinguish between the personal and professional motivations of the stakeholders

Problem: The women in the co-op do not get to keep their money to feed their children, because the money is given to the men in the household. You are leaving the co-op in 6 months and want to get the cooperative back on track. You want to get the cooperative on track of achieving the twin social outcomes in a sustainable manner.

 

Stakeholders:

  • Other 6 members of leadership committee
    • Personal Motivations: want to provide for their family, wants to keep good relations with the men and not cause issues, wants to keep good relations with the other women in the co-op. 
    • Professional Motivations: maintain position on the leadership committee, make a decision that satisfies everyone in the co-op and in the community.
  • Men in households:
    • Personal Motivations: buy products and goods that are personally satisfying (alcohol, and luxury items)
    • Professional Motivations: Work and provide for their family, but also take the money that the women bring home.
  • Breastfeeding Moms:
    • Professional Motivation: N/a 
    • Personal Motivation: The mothers want to be providing their babies with the best nutrients while keeping them safe 
  • Woman joining the co-op
    • Professional Motivation: sell as much porridge as possible to the community (build up the co-op), make the best and safest product (porridge), educate breastfeeding mothers, make money.
    • Personal Motivation: help their own babies stay healthy, help their neighbors.
  • Babies
    • Professional Motivation: N/a 
    • Personal Motivation: Want to minimize their risk of contracting HIV and still intake their required nutrients.
  • Farmers 
    • Professional Motivation: produce as much of their crop for community consumption as possible, make money (maximize profit), collaborate with the women in the cooperative 
    • Personal Motivation: help the community stay healthy (provide the best crops)
  • Grant Donor (secondary stakeholder)
    • Professional Motivation: Have good reputation of making good deeds, want their money to be allocated wisely and productively for meaningful purposes
    • Personal Motivation: Want  women in the area to be healthier and have their livelihood improved
  • Doctors
    • Professional Motivation: Would want HIV cases to go down and  would want to allocate their resources and knowledge to other patients with other illnesses  
    • Personal Motivation: Prevent the amount of infants they see with HIV/Malnutrition
  • Us (researchers establishing the co-op)
    • Professional Motivation: To start a successful and sustainable co-op what will also enhance our skill sets and credibility, build up good record and establish their credibility for future funding and resources 
    • Personal Motivation: Want to improve the livelihoods of women and children in the arena 

 

Step 4: Formulate ONE solution – based on information available, to have a win-win situation for your relationship and your venture. Approaches [1/2/3: repeat for every action] 

 

Optimal Solution: The cooperative will establish a partial credit system that allows women to earn more benefits by storing some of their earned money rather than cashing out $3 every day. These benefits can be in the form of discounts on local goods and porridge for the kids.The committee will decide the procedure on how to cash out (limit per day, what products can be purchased with high credits), making sure that money will be spent towards their kids rather than being wasted by the men in the households. However, the other portion of their pay (lesser part) will be in cash so that they can still save face with the men in the households. Additionally, the women will also be allowed to take home roughly two servings of porridge each day to ensure their kids are being fed.

 

How does the solution meet twin outcomes?

 

The women in the co-op will be able to use their pay to provide for their families now (through the credit system), and also will still be bringing back physical money to the men at home (so it doesn’t disrupt cultural norms and cause issues in the community). The women will not have to confront the men about wanting to use the money for other non-frivolous things. On the other side, you are still “paying” the women in the co-op. Altogether, this solution will help meet the twin outcomes: better nutrition for the children and improved livelihood for rural households.

 

Pros: 

  • The women have to spend a certain amount of their earned pay on food for their families. 
  • The women are allowed to bring home porridge free of charge each day to nourish their children.

Cons:

  • The men will still be receiving some of the women’s pay and using on personal luxury items.
  • The women will only be able to use their credit earnings on porridge, or food/products that are within the co-op (or agreed upon by the committee). 

 

How does it save face of those involved? 

 

The co-op partial credit system allows for the women to still bring home a smaller portion of physical money that the men will be able to spend how they want to. The women will now be given an opportunity to spend their money how they want (on their families) without having to confront the men. It will also save face for the co-op and the committee, because it is a very non-confrontational approach that attempts not to disrupt cultural norms. 

 

Implications on relationships 

  • Short-term 
    • The men will most likely be disappointed that the women are bringing home less money, but the men will not likely be too offended that they abuse the wives and the children because at least we still give them the impression that they are “in control” of the finance.
  • Long-term 
    • The relationships will be healthier between the men and women in the household because the men will still be receiving money though it is small and the women will be able to feed their children
    • The men might start changing their behavior and thinking more about their family.
    • The families will have access to more food and necessary items (live better)
    • If the children grow up happier and healthier, they could help out the family with higher productivity, which could raise the family’s income and contribute to the elevated livelihoods.

 

Implications on the venture 

  • Short-term
    • They co-op will have to be prepared to have more porridge available because the women in the co-op will now be buying more too.
    • Might be easier to pay the women (not need as much cash).
  • Long-term 
    • The committee will now have more power in deciding the ratio of credit to cash payments of the women, and also in what products they can use the credit on.
    • The co-op may be more successful because each of the women will now essentially be reinvesting their earnings into the company by buying food. 
      • More women may be able to participate

 

Seek additional assistance, as appropriate – previous cases, peers, reliance on personal experience, inner reflection 

 

We combined our own proposed solution as well as our peers’ in order to maximize the benefits to the community while saving faces for every stakeholder involved. Some of our peer’s suggestions:

  1. Gift card. Extracting part of the money that they earn per day to the gift card, which can be used to purchase goods in the grocery store. 
  2. Food Receipt. Require that a certain amount of the food is spent responsibly. Receipts required, incentives could be included to encourage more responsible use of money in the rural household.
  3. Hold meetings with the cooperative’s committees (6 women) and the community leaders (including both men and women) to bring up the issue and discuss how money earned by the women working for the cooperatives can be distributed in a more sustainable manner. 
  4. Co-op gives the women option to walk away with porridge everyday for free to address malnutrition problem

 

Our inner reflection: 

  • We do not integrate solution 1 and 2 into our proposal because we think it might not be as effective as the credit system in the context of giving  the power to the women to purchase food and necessities to support their families physically and mentally. 
  • We got solution 4 from our peers, and we think it is a viable idea that can help address the malnutrition problem effectively; so, we incorporate them into our solution. 
  • For solution 3, it doesn’t not necessarily solve the problem, but it reminds us that no matter how good our solution is, if we don’t have a good implementation strategy, it automatically becomes useless. The team will take this into consideration into our last step.

Step 7: List the sequence of actions you will take to implement your solution.

 

  • Ask the women in the leadership committee if they want a change. Get them to understand the system and the problem we are facing.
  • Validate it with committee and the men – talk to 25-30 people one on one, try to get them on board 
  • Bring everyone together for the large meeting
  • Try to moderate the discussion → move it towards to the grassroot diplomacy 
  • Ask the people in the meeting, “How do they want to structure the cooperatives’ finance?”
  • Figure out a set ratio of credit/cash pay, and implement ways the committee can adjust this over time if it doesn’t work.
  • Figure out what items the credit can be used for.
  • Test the system out for a few months, and reconvene with the committee to make adjustments if needed. 
  • Before you leave, make sure you communicate candidly and clearly with the 6 women in the committee about the vision and core mission of the cooperative, making sure everyone is on the same page. Encourage them to find and educate younger members about the mindset so that the venture keeps flourishing even after your departure.

Blog Post # 3

Situation: Jack is an American student who lived at a youth center in Kenya while working on a social venture. In this role, he lived and interacted with the children at the center and worked closely with the staff. One Saturday evening, kids under the age of 14 years were to receive presents that were sent by an international donor organization. A staff member at the youth center had picked up all the gifts the previous weekend and they were finally going to be distributed this Saturday. When it came time to give the gifts out after dinner, the staff members called Jack up to the front – as he was a guest – to assist in the gift-giving ceremony. The staff members had allocated the gifts for the children and labelled them – Jack’s job was to hand out the gifts to the kids. The only problem was that four children did not receive gifts and the staff members did not appear to be concerned about the four forgotten children. As kids began leaving the hall, they thanked Jack for the gifts. The kids were convinced that Jack had gotten the gifts for them. Jack felt a little awkward but at the same time reflected that a good relationship with the kids would help him in several ways during his five-month stay at the center. 

 

At the bottom of the boxes containing the gifts, there were a few black hats. The kids that did not get a present were brought over to the box and given a hat. However, they were upset about the fact that they were not given the hat as ceremoniously as the other kids. The staff gave them their hat and shooed them on their way as if they had some fault in this situation. As one of the little boys who did not receive a gift left the hall, he walked past Jack holding his black hat, and gave him a stare that clearly indicated that he blamed Jack for not receiving a gift. Jack met with the staff and discussed how the four kids were very upset and felt ‘left out’ after the incident. The staff did not acknowledge the problem and were a little piqued that they were being blamed for such a trivial matter. They were convinced that Jack was making a big deal out of the situation and were concerned that Jack would become a ‘children’s rights activist’ and create unnecessary problems for them. The only response they gave Jack was – “If you think there is a problem, then you go ahead and solve it”. If you were Jack, how would you proceed? 

 

Ethical Issues:

  • Not every child in this situation received equal treatment
  • Hindering a child’s mental growth from lack of consideration
  • Jack doesn’t want to push back against the staff as he is a visitor and comes from a different ethical background

 

Step 1: Determine the facts in the situation – obtain all of the unbiased facts possible 

  • Jack was asked to give out gifts on behalf of the youth center
  • 4 kids didn’t receive gifts ceremoniously and instead were given a black hat
  • The kid(s) blame Jack for not getting gifts
  • Jack tries to include the kids who are feeling left out, but the staff isn’t concerned
  • There is a cultural difference between Jack ( American ) and the Staff ( Kenyan)
  • Only one kid directly looked at Jack with a look of blame for not receiving a gift 
  • An organization donated the gifts 
  • Black hat having a negative stigma to it

 

Step 2 & 3: Define the problem and the stakeholders – those with a vested interest in the outcome. Determine and distinguish between the personal and professional motivations of the stakeholders.

  • Jack
    • Problem: He noticed that not all the children received gifts, causing some of them to feel “left out” so he wanted to bring this fact into the attention of the staff that would not strain his relationship with them.
    • Personal: Jack wants all the children to be treated equally. He wants to be well respected by the children and have a positive relationship with each other.
    • Professional: Jack will be staying with the children for a long period of time and wants to be seen in a good light. He wants the staff to make changes that would enhance their consideration of the children without causing a strain in his relationship with them.
  • Staff (Maintain the situation they currently have without escalating it in any unnecessary manner→ Jack possibly interfering could create bigger issues they want to avoid)
    • Problem: The staff is concerned about Jack placing blame on them for a mistake that they do not view as a big issue. The staff does not want the situation to be escalated. 
    • Personal: The staff does not want their reputation to be jeopardized. Professional: They also don’t want to interfere with the hierarchy and flow they have created and worked in. They want operations to continue to be smooth and avoid unnecessary turbulence.
    • Don’t necessarily care about the credit concerning the gift giving
  • Kids w/o gifts
    • Problem: These 4 kids didn’t receive gifts in the ceremonious manner the other kids did, so they likely feel left out
      • They likely also blame Jack and might treat him differently for the rest of his time w/ the center
    • Personal: Get a gift ceremoniously
      • Equal treatment
    • Avoiding embarrassment 
  • Kids w/gifts (secondary)
    • Problem: These kids received a gift in a ceremonious manner while 4 other kids were handed a hat that was unwrapped. They might tease the kids that got hats.
    • Personal: They might feel bad if one of their friends did not receive a gift in the way they did otherwise they are not affected.
    • Professional: N/A
  • Donors (secondary)
    • Problem: Donors recognize that not all children in Kenya are fortunate and could be better off with even a little extra of something.
    • Personal: Donors want to feel as if they are helping someone out and perhaps changing their lives by making a gift to people in less fortunate situations.
    • Professional: Donors feel that it is their duty & responsibility to contribute towards the happiness of children who are less fortunate due to their financial capabilities.

 

Step 4: 3 Solutions

Potential Solution #1: Have another smaller gift ceremony in which everyone certainly receives gifts

How does it solve the problem? The formerly left out children don’t continue to feel left out

  • Pros: Kids who were left out before forget about past experience and feel included
  • Cons: Unsure of financial ability to provide more gifts

How does it save face of those involved? Kids don’t continue to question why either Jack or the staff didn’t give them gifts

Implications on relationships

  • Short-term: The kids who feel left out don’t feel removed from the other groups
  • Long-term: Jack, the staff, and the children maintain a good relationship

Implications on the venture (Khanjan said to interpret venture as Jack’s work for the next 5 months) 

  • Short-term: Jack is no longer blamed for leaving 4 kids out
  • Long-term: Jack maintains a good relationship with the kids and can continue his personal and professional work without any underlying conflicts

 

Potential Solution #2: Do not continue to press the issue 

How does it solve the problem? : Jack is not going to apologize to the kids or bring the problem back up to administration.

  • Pros : 
    • Administration will be satisfied and Jack will maintain a respectful relationship with them as well as kids the who received presents in a ceremonious way 
    • Will not intensify the feelings of the children. 
      • For example: When a toddler falls, do not address the fact that they fell too much because it could lead to more crying and embarrassment. 
  • Cons
    • The four kids who did not receive gifts in a ceremonious way may remain upset with Jack. 

How does it save face of those involved?

This saves face because it does not redirect the blame to the administration or reintroduce the problem to the kids and administration. 

Implications on relationships

  • Short-term – Jack, the staff, and the children who received gifts maintain a good relationship
  • Long-term – Jack, the staff, and children maintain a good relationship 

Implications on the venture

  • Short-term – Jack may have some pushbacks when it comes to relationship building during the first weeks of his work. 
  • Long-term -Jack will be able to successfully continue his professional and personal work without underlying issues with the staff

 

Potential Solution #3: Plan a baking activity with the staff that revolves around the concept of bonding that will involve the children and the staff. Emphasizing the importance of making sure that there are enough ingredients for all the children and the adults involved prior to the event. Spend time with the four children that did not get a gift in a “ceremonious way”.

How does it solve the problem?

  • Pros: 
    • Jack is able to teach the staff, indirectly, the importance of making sure that everyone is equally involved and engaged. 
    • The staff is exposed to a new concept/culture of equal treatment and engagement in a subtle way. They will not feel as if Jack is brining unnecessary problems, but instead is engaged in establishing a positive relationship with everyone at the center while enhancing their sense of community with each other
    • Food is a necessity, so it will be easier to acquire rather than more gifts/resources
    • Children will have an enjoyable time participating in the activity and develop a deeper relationship with one another
    • Jack can restore his relationship with the four children that did not receive a gift
  • Cons
    • Possible financial burdens when it comes to providing the needed supplies 
    • Could interfere with school structure, schedule 
      • May need to be planned very in advance
        • Possibly cannot happen as a short term solution
    • The kids might not make the connection between the inclusiveness of the activity and still be upset about not receiving gifts

How does it save face of those involved?

  • This solution saves face because it does not redirect blame, instead it focuses on building up the relationships and teaches the importance of equal involvement with all of the kids and staff.

 

Implications on relationships

  • Short-term: Jack, kids, and staff have a better bond
  • Long-term: Could dictate positive relationships for the rest of Jack’s stay there. 

Implications on the venture

  • Short-term: Will start off on a clean slate that will allow him to not face any barriers that could occur due to the 4 children no longer having as much appreciation and respect for him 
  • Long-term:
    • Jack will be seen as a foreigner who is actively engaged with the community
    • The staff may learn the importance of equality 

 

Step 5 & 6:

  • As a former supervisors of kids at a day care located in a gym, I find it is very important to from positive relationships with kids
  • I also found that kids forget things fast when they are occupied by something else so this activity would be the perfect opportunity to improve relationships and put the past behind the kids and the staff
  • The best course of action in this situation would be solution number 3
  • Although this solution could not work as well as it intends and could cause a financial burden, Jake will still be able to successfully complete his work and save the face of everyone involved
  • If Jake is able to successfully complete his work and save face everyone involved will be satisfied in the long term
  • This solution also has positive short-term and long-term outcomes which is another goal of the decision being made
  • This solution is better than one because the ingredients for a cake ( or any simple baked good) is much cheaper than the funds required to buy more gifts
  • Solution 2 is clearly the worst pick out of the three because it does not have a positive short-term outcome opposed to the other two solutions

Step 7: List the sequence of actions you will take to implement your solution.

  1. Ask administration permission
  2. Ask for food allergies
  3. schedule a time that works for all kids
  4. Pick out a dessert
  5. buy the ingredients for this dessert
  6. inform the kids a week in advance and times leading up to it to get them excited
  7. Teach the kids how to make said baked good with you
  8. make sure to create a bond with the kid who gave me a mean look
    1. as well as the other gift less kids
  9. have the all kids help clean up ( team work building activity )
  10. enjoy the dessert together

 

 

Blog Post #2

Case:

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 )

Facts

  • 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

Impact

  • 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

Case: 

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 ( healthline.com)

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

      PCA

  • UPD
Key Activities

Processing Copra to create value added products

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

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.

 

Short-term

  • 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)

Long-term

  • 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.

Source: https://www.usaid.gov/news-information/press-releases/oct-23-2019-usaid-announces-35-million-water-and-energy-food-challenge  

 

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. 

https://www.globalinnovation.fund/

 

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.

http://www.sowasia.org/about-sowsaia

 

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.

https://www.dbs.com/foundation/our-support/grant-programme

 

  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.

 

UPD

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.
Offer

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

Offer

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.

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