4.2 Frugal Innovation: a Business Perspective

Course subject(s) 4. Frugal Innovations as Responsible Innovations

In this lecture, Prof. Cees van Beers will first define what a frugal innovation is. This is important going forward, because designing (new) technologies and services for economically disadvantaged populations requires a different mind-set than traditional high-technology innovation.

On the other hand, it does not mean that high-technology for-profit companies cannot contribute to (or profit from) the market that serves the “Bottom of Pyramid” consumers. Prof. Cees will thus highlight how and why technology firms can still participate in profitable yet responsible development. Do check the readings for this section, which will treat these insights in-depth.

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Subtitles (captions) in other languages than provided can be viewed at YouTube. Select your language in the CC-button of YouTube.

Bonus: Frugal Thermometer

In his web lecture, Cees van Beers spoke briefly about a frugal thermometer developed by students from Delft, Leiden and Rotterdam in close consultation with local stakeholders in Uganda. This device  is able to accurately measure the temperature of (especially) women and children in Africa. Often, tactile measurement of body temperature, e.g. with a hand against the forehead, is the only diagnostic recourse for mothers and other caretakers of young children to establish fever. The newly developed device is affordable, hygienic, reliable, safe, simple to use and suitable for tropical contexts.

The following video gives some more information (note: no download available).

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Responsible Innovation by TU Delft OpenCourseWare is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://ocw.tudelft.nl/courses/responsible-innovation/.
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