Week 9

  • Interdependence: The relationship, dependence, and connectedness of different systems on each other


  • Ukweli relies on Hassan to accomplish his mission of distributing test strips and collecting data to ultimately reduce maternal mortality in Sierra Leone, and Hassan relies on Ukweli to get paid.
  • The Malnutrition team relied on Bettah bakery for baking space, while Bettah bakery relied on us for business knowledge and help to grow.


  • Holism: Individual parts are dependent on each other and produce more value together than they would on their own


  • The Malnutrition team has many bioengineers that have taken similar classes, but when put together, they know more than what they know themselves
  • The Sickle Cell (SC) Screening team needs to pair their final test strip with a treatment program. Without the treatment program, the knowledge from the test strip (positive for SC or negative for SC) is useless because medication/treatment is necessary. 


  • Multifinality: Achieving different outcomes from the same original process, “win-win for everyone” 


  • The network we have formed in GSIF has our own goals for our own projects, but overall, GSIF wants to find sustainable solutions to health and development problems in Sierra Leone
  • Mushrooms team creates income for Jwara and rice farmers and addresses issues of nutrition in poor communities.
  • Khanjan satisfies his own ego and keeps his job when we succeed  
  • Equifinality: There are many approaches that can be taken to reach the same goal


    • There are several different recipes that the Malnutrition team can use to lower child malnutrition rates in Sierra Leone
    • There are many different aspects (travel to clinics, light in birthing rooms, ANC days)  of maternal healthcare that can be focused on by the Safe Motherhood Documentary in order to reduce material death/improve maternal healthcare. 


  • Differentiation: Within a given system, specific and unique parts are performing specific functions distinct from one another.


  • In the Ukweli operation, Wancheng is responsible for shipping the test trips to Freetown, Allieu is responsible for getting them to Makeni and Hassan is in charge of getting the strips to the clinics and CHWs. Each needs the other in the larger operation to function, but each is also its own subsystem.
  • For all teams we must be able to balance and divide our personal and professional relationships. We have to be able to disagree, agree, and build off of each others ideas in order to make progress as a group. 


  • Regulation: Making sure that intentions and actions match up with each other.

    • The Malnutrition team will be having clinical trials to make sure that we are actually reducing child malnutrition the way we say we are
    • The Sickle Cell group will be running many confirmatory tests, including a clinical trial (with a verification test, the gold standard), in order to insure the test strip is able to diagnose Sickle Cell Disease with a certain level of accuracy.


  • Abstraction: viewing a system from a birds eye view approach, thinking through complex scenarios with a level of higher context and in broader terms
    • Thinking of the Ukweli operation through a context of the larger Ministry of Health perspective and what they need and deal with at a nationwide perspective
    • Expanding projects to multiple countries eg. whatever Khanjan is doing in Liberia and Madagascar


  • Leverage Points: A small area within a given system where a small change can be made in order to produce big change.
    • CHWs are an easily accessible and effective part of the healthcare system
    • By charging a fee (~$5) to mothers giving birth at home, mothers will go to the clinic saving many lives.
    • A small change in the Malnutrition team’s product can make a huge change in the effectivity of our product.

2. Emergence is when a whole bunch of sub-systems combine to create one system that cannot function without the existence and support of any of its connected sub-systems. A bee hive is one example of emergence, in which a complex system of hierarchy and designated functions combines to produce one unified and productive bee community.

Part 3: The solution to water hyacinth

Processing Side 

  1. Employ community to gather hyacinth and pay for the supply by the kilo


Marketing Side 

  1. Partner with the fishermen to sell the briquettes with the fish, they can make money and will help the entrepreneur collect the hyacinth. Only fisherman than want to be involved will be hired/become a partner. The other fisherman who aren’t involved originally will feel like they are missing out once they see the success of the original fisherman and will then want to join the venture. 



  1. Sell briquettes to community
  2. Partner with a certain group of fishermen, in a certain area and provide discounted or free briquettes.

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