The Transformative Business Model

Original article: https://hbr.org/2016/10/the-transformative-business-model

We usually associate an industry’s transformation with the adoption of a new technology. But although new technologies are often major factors, they have never transformed an industry on their own. What does achieve such a transformation is a business model that can link a new technology to an emerging market need.

MP3 technology is a classic case in point. Early MP3 devices represented an order-of-magnitude increase in capacity over magnetic tapes and CDs: Users could carry thousands of songs on a small device. But MP3 players revolutionized the audio devices market only after Apple coupled the iPod with iTunes in a new business model, swiftly moving music-recording sales from the physical to the virtual world.

What, exactly, enables a business model to deliver on a technology’s potential? To answer that question, we embarked on an in-depth analysis of 40 companies that had launched new business models in a variety of industries. Some succeeded in radically altering their industries; others looked promising but ultimately did not succeed. In this article we present the key takeaways from our research and suggest how they can help innovators transform industries.

How Business Models Work

Definitions of “business model” vary, but most people would agree that it describes how a company creates and captures value. The features of the model define the customer value proposition and the pricing mechanism, indicate how the company will organize itself and whom it will partner with to produce value, and specify how it will structure its supply chain. Basically, a business model is a system whose various features interact, often in complex ways, to determine the company’s success.

In any given industry, a dominant business model tends to emerge over time. In the absence of market distortions, the model will reflect the most efficient way to allocate and organize resources. Most attempts to introduce a new model fail—but occasionally one succeeds in overturning the dominant model, usually by leveraging a new technology. If new entrants use the model to displace incumbents, or if competitors adopt it, then the industry has been transformed.

Consider Airbnb, which upended the hotel industry. Founded in 2008, the company has experienced phenomenal growth: It now has more rooms than either InterContinental Hotels or Hilton Worldwide. As of this writing, Airbnb represents 19.5% of the hotel room supply in New York and operates in 192 countries, in which it accounts for 5.4% of room supply (up from 3.6% in 2015).

The founders of Airbnb realized that platform technology made it feasible to craft an entirely new business model that would challenge the traditional economics of the hotel business. Unlike conventional hotel chains, Airbnb does not own or manage property—it allows users to rent any livable space (from a sofa to a mansion) through an online platform that matches individuals looking for accommodations with home owners willing to share a room or a house. Airbnb manages the platform and takes a percentage of the rent.

Because its income does not depend on owning or managing physical assets, Airbnb needs no large investments to scale up and thus can charge lower prices (usually 30% lower than hotels charge). Moreover, since the home owners are responsible for managing and maintaining the property and any services they may offer, Airbnb’s risks (not to mention operational costs) are much lower than those of traditional hotels. On the customer side, Airbnb’s model redefines the value proposition by offering a more personal service—and a cheaper one.

Before platform technology existed, there was no reason to change the hotel business in any meaningful way. But after its introduction, the dominant business model became vulnerable to attack from anyone who could leverage that technology to create a more compelling value proposition for customers. The new business model serves as the interface between what technology enables and what the marketplace wants.

Let’s look now at what features make a business model transformative.

The Six Keys to Success

We selected the 40 new business models we analyzed on the basis of how many mentions they received in the high-quality, high-circulation business press. All of them seemed to have the potential to transform their industries, but only a subset had succeeded in doing so. We looked for recurring features in the models and found six. No company displayed all of them, but as we shall see, a higher number of these features usually correlated with a higher chance of success at transformation.

1. A more personalized product or service.

Many new models offer products or services that are better tailored than the dominant models to customers’ individual and immediate needs. Companies often leverage technology to achieve this at competitive prices.

2. A closed-loop process.

Many models replace a linear consumption process (in which products are made, used, and then disposed of) with a closed loop, in which used products are recycled. This shift reduces overall resource costs.

3. Asset sharing.

Some innovations succeed because they enable the sharing of costly assets—Airbnb allows home owners to share them with travelers, and Uber shares assets with car owners. Sometimes assets may be shared across a supply chain. The sharing typically happens by means of two-sided online marketplaces that unlock value for both sides: I get money from renting my spare room, and you get a cheaper and perhaps nicer place to stay. Sharing also reduces entry barriers to many industries, because an entrant need not own the assets in question; it can merely act as an intermediary.

4. Usage-based pricing.

Some models charge customers when they use the product or service, rather than requiring them to buy something outright. The customers benefit because they incur costs only as offerings generate value; the company benefits because the number of customers is likely to grow.

5. A more collaborative ecosystem.

Some innovations are successful because a new technology improves collaboration with supply chain partners and helps allocate business risks more appropriately, making cost reductions possible.

6. An agile and adaptive organization.

Innovators sometimes use technology to move away from traditional hierarchical models of decision making in order to make decisions that better reflect market needs and allow real-time adaptation to changes in those needs. The result is often greater value for the customer at less cost to the company.

Each feature on this list is tied to long-term trends in both technology and demand.On the tech side, one trend is the development of sensors that allow cheaper and broader data capture. Another is that big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are enabling companies to turn enormous amounts of unstructured data into rules and decisions. A third is that connected devices (the internet of things) and cloud technology are permitting decentralized and widespread data manipulation and analysis. And a fourth is that developments in manufacturing (think nanotechnology and 3-D printing) are creating more possibilities for distributed and small-scale production.

All six features represent potential solutions for linking market demand and technological capability. For example, greater personalization in the value proposition responds to the fragmentation of consumer preferences and the resultant demand for more-diverse offerings. That personalization has been made possible by sensors that collect data from connected devices via the cloud; the data is analyzed by big data solutions and turned into services—such as recommendations and alerts—that are different for each user.

From Innovation to Transformation

In theory, the more of the six features a new business model has, the greater its potential to transform a given industry should be. We tested that hypothesis by analyzing how many features each of the 40 new models displayed and comparing the results with its actual performance.

The taxi service company Uber ticks no fewer than five boxes. Its business model is built on asset sharing—the drivers use their own cars. Uber has developed a collaborative ecosystem in which the driver assumes the risk of winning rides, while the platform helps minimize that risk through the application of big data. The platform also creates agility through an internal decision-making system that responds to market changes in real time. This lets Uber apply usage-based pricing and direct drivers to locations where the probability of finding a fare is high.

Finally, Uber uses a scheme whereby customers rate drivers. Via the big data platform, a would-be customer can see on his or her mobile device the closest drivers and their ratings. The rating system pushes drivers to offer clean cars and quality service, and it also provides at least a bit of personalization. Allowing the customer to decide between the closest car and the one (maybe a bit farther out) with the highest rating may not sound like much, but it is still far ahead of traditional taxi services.

The implication of our finding is straightforward: If you are thinking about changing your business model or entering an industry with a new model, you can rate yourself on how well your model performs on the six features. If you don’t beat the competition on any of them, your chances of success are low. But if your model significantly outdoes the current model on three or more features, you are well positioned to succeed.

Uber has five key features of a potentially transformative business model.

To rate yourself on a feature, you must first define what it actually means in your industry. For example, in financial services personalization may mean tailored loan terms (including interest rates, monthly payments, and loan duration), whereas in retail it may mean customized T-shirt designs or one-off dresses. In education it may mean that the support provided to students changes according to their individual strengths and weaknesses, and in health care it may mean data-enabled, targeted medicine. Only when performance is expressed in such industry-specific ways can a company develop metrics to evaluate and compare its model on the key features and begin to think about how to differentiate itself by using new technologies.

Healx: A Case Study

Informed by our business model framework, we advised (and Cambridge Judge Business School’s business accelerator supported) the tech venture Healx, which focuses on the treatment of patients with rare diseases in the emerging field of personalized medicine. A big challenge for pharmaceutical companies in this domain is that rare-disease markets are very small, so companies usually have to charge astronomical prices. (One drug, Soliris, used in the treatment of paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria, costs about $500,000 per patient-year.) Some potential treatments are, however, being used for more-common diseases with large patient markets. They could be repurposed to suit the needs of rare-disease sufferers, but they typically work only for people with specific genetic profiles.

Enter Healx, with a platform that leverages big data technology and analytics across multiple databases owned by various organizations within global life sciences and health care to efficiently match treatments to rare-disease patients. Its initial business model hit three of our six key features. First, Healx’s value proposition was about asset sharing (for example, making available clinical-trial databases that record the effectiveness of most drugs across therapeutic areas and diseases, including rare ones). Second, the business promised more personalization by revealing drugs with high potential for treating the rare diseases covered. Finally, Healx’s model would, in theory, create a collaborative ecosystem by bringing together big pharma (which has the treatment and trial data) and health care providers (which have data about effectiveness and incompatibility reactions and also personal genome descriptions).

Healx’s latest business model brings personalization to the highest level.

How did we measure performance along those features? To assess personalization, we compared the amount of drug data currently provided to sufferers of rare diseases with the amount that Healx could provide, which initially covered 1,000 of the 7,000 rare diseases that have formal advocacy groups worldwide. These groups represent some 350 million people, 95% of whom currently get no even reasonably relevant drug recommendations. We measured asset sharing by looking at the proportion of known data on rare-disease-relevant drugs that Healx could access—about 20% in its start-up phase. Finally, we assessed its collaborative ecosystem by looking at how many of the main data-holding institutions participated—about a quarter.

At first Healx struggled to get pharma companies to join the platform; they were concerned that their treatment data would leak to competitors. But the Healx team spotted an opportunity to give companies an incentive. In 2014 the United Kingdom’s National Health Service introduced a new rule for pharmaceutical companies: If an expensive treatment doesn’t work for a patient, the company responsible can be forced to reimburse NHS providers for its cost. The reimbursement amounts were disease-specific and counted in the thousands of British pounds.

Treatment failure is often caused by specificities in individual genomes, and Healx’s managers realized that their technology could help companies predict such failures with high accuracy, potentially saving millions of pounds a year.

More recently, Healx has developed a machine-learning algorithm that can use a patient’s biological information not only to match drugs to disease symptoms but also to predict exactly which drug will achieve what level of effectiveness for that particular patient. The latest version of its business model brings personalization to the maximum possible level and adds agility, because the treating clinician—armed with the biological data and the algorithm—can make better treatment decisions directly with the patient and doesn’t have to rely on fixed rules of thumb about which of the few available off-label drugs to use. In this way, Healx is able to support decentralized, real-time, accurate decision making.

This version of the Healx model has even more transformation potential—it exhibits four of the six features; it has already generated revenue from customers; and in the long term it could empower patients by giving them much more information before they consult a medical practitioner. Although it is still too early to tell whether that potential will be realized, Healx is clearly a venture to watch. It has earned a number of prizes (including the 2015 Life Science Business of the Year and the 2016 Graduate Business of the Year in the Cambridge cluster) and sizable investments from several global funds.

You cannot guarantee the success of an innovation (unless you choose a market niche so small as to be insignificant). But you can load the dice by ensuring that your business model links market needs with emerging technologies. The more such links you can make, the more likely you are to transform your industry.

Want More Women in Tech? Design it.

Original article: https://medium.com/ideo-stories/want-more-women-in-tech-design-it-40691587033d

“Female Engineers Continue to Outnumber Male Counterparts.”
“Top 10 Most Innovative Companies now run by Women.”
“Investors Back More Female Founders, study says.”

Just kidding. But could we design a future in which those headlines were true?

We took that challenge to TEDWomen 2015, where the theme was “Momentum”. More than 750 women (and a few brave men) spent three days hearing from extraordinary people who are already transforming how we think, live, and work.

When it comes to the tech and venture world, it’s clear that no one is happy with the current state of affairs, not least our most visible CEOs. Talk of gender inequity — and lack of diversity in technology more broadly — has reached a fever pitch.

Our team at IDEO partnered with TED and Greylock Partners to have an open, generative conversation about how we might change the tech ecosystem to provide greater opportunities for female entrepreneurs.

If design is about solving problems, we thought, let’s use it to address this one.

Of course, we knew this was not a problem that could be solved over salmon at a 90-minute lunch. But we also knew this was an unmissable opportunity to convene a remarkable group of TEDWomen attendees — from C-suite leaders and investors to startup founders and entrepreneurs — who could help us create the kind of momentum the women up on stage were telling us about, from a school principal in Chicago to a teenager in Malawi.

We did a little prep to help direct the conversation. At IDEO, design starts with people. To get a broader sense of what women are dealing with out there, we asked some successful female founders to tell us about their experience as they built and launched their companies. Down to the last, everyone had battle scars to share with the group. Problem identified.

To keep us on a directed course, we charted the entrepreneur’s journey as a Steve Zissou-esque voyage out to sea (the TEDWomen conference took place in the coastal town of Monterey, after all) and identified a few ports of call along the way where we might wield influence:

The open seas can be choppy for any entrepreneur, and especially for women. Illustration: Jane Ha; Katie Clark

Using that chart as a backdrop, we asked some open-ended questions:

How might we encourage women to take the leap from idea to action?

How might we support women in being bullish about valuing their companies?

How might we productively call out bias to shift perspectives?

Almost immediately, the ideas flew.

Here are just a few: Our hope is that this springboards more conversation, and also encourages people to start prototyping.

  • An app or hotline that women could use to help bolster negotiation strategies in real time
  • Systems to make comparing and sharing valuation data more transparent
  • A “bad manners” movement that would call out bias in a loud, public way
  • A 1% Diversity Pledge, modeled on Salesforce’s 1% pledge for philanthropy
We designed fast and furious, hoping the female leaders at our lunch would take the ideas back to their workplaces.

In one of the more poignant moments of the discussion, one female VC suggested that to truly affect change, investors need to back more women founders and start writing checks. Her point was that the core leverage in the system as a VC is who you back. Vigorous head nodding followed.

The optimism, hope, and ideas lobbed by the group spilled over into the rest of the conference, as we bumped into one another at the coffee stand.

(Our bubble wasn’t even burst by countless cab drivers and bus boys who chipperly called us “girls” and “sweetie” underneath the TEDWomen conference banner.)


So what. Now what? (thanks, Linda Cliatt Wayman)

How can we outmaneuver or simply work around the implicit bias that is holding women back in tech, where we make up only ⅓ of employees(compared to 59 percent of the overall US labor force)? Systemic bias can start pretty far upstream (lack of STEM encouragement for school-aged girls, for example), but every day we wade through those waters without calling it out, we lose ground.

The need for more women as founders and leaders of companies isn’t really about equality, either — it’s simply good business. In companies that have the top 20 percent of financial performance, 27 percent of leaders are women. And from a Gallup study that looked at 800 business units from two companies representing two different industries (retail and hospitality), gender-diverse business units in the retail company had 14 percent higher average comparable revenue than less-diverse business units. In the hospitality company it was even more pronounced — 19 percent higher average quarterly net profit.

Anyone can run with ideas like “bias stickers” or a support hotline for women in business and learn what works and what doesn’t. Let’s experiment our way to a future that makes the headlines of this article a reality.

For more thoughts on this topic, listen to our IDEO Futures Podcast. Other ideas? Send us a flare! #HowMightWomen.

The future is ours to design.

Which are the World’s most innovative FMCG companies?

Original article: http://www.nielsen.com/uk/en/press-room/2015/Nielsen-analysis-of-8500-plus-fmcg-launches-reveals-18-breakthrough-innovation-successes.html

London, 3 December 2015. Nivea, Robinsons, Strongbow, Vanish and Volvic are among a select group of brands to have successfully launched  products classed as ‘breakthrough innovation winners’ this year – according to Nielsen’s 2015 Breakthrough Innovation Report, which analysed 8,650 FMCG product launches – nearly 24,500 new SKUs – across Western Europe.

To be classed a breakthrough innovation winner, product launches had to meet three criteria: deliver a new proposition (not just a refinement); generate at least £10/€10 million sales in their first year of trading; and maintain at least 90% of their sales in the second year. 18 product launches did.

The Breakthrough Innovation Winners for 2015 are:

  • Ariel: 3-In-1 Pods (detergent)
  • Cadbury: Dairy Milk Marvellous Creations (chocolate)
  • Die Limo: Von Granini (beverage)
  • Dompé: (headache remedy)
  • Garnier: Fructis Schadenlöscher (hair care)
  • Garnier: Ultimate Blends (hair care)
  • Nivea: Cellular Anti-Age (face cream)
  • L’Oréal Paris: Elvive Fibrology (hair care)
  • Lay’s: Xtra (salty snacks/crisps)
  • Robinsons: Squash’d (beverage)
  • Scholl: Velvet Smooth Express Pedi (foot care)
  • Strongbow: Dark Fruit (beverage)
  • Sure: Compressed (deodorant)
  • Tchibo: Barista (coffee)
  • Tropicana: in Turkey (beverage)
  • Vanish: Gold Oxi Action (detergent)
  • Volvic: Juicy (beverage)
  • Yatekomo: (food)

“Three out of four new SKUs fail to generate even £100,000 sales in their first year of trading and are often delisted by retailers,” explains Marcin Penconek, VP of Nielsen’s innovation practice in Europe, and co-author of the report. “Breakthrough innovation is extremely rare but, despite perceptions amongst some, it’s neither random, nor down to luck, nor magic. There are clear patterns behind why consumers pull some products and not others into their lives.”

The report explains why launches succeed or fail, using an approach called “Jobs Theory” – the idea that what causes a person to consume something is not related to that consumer’s identifiable qualities – such as demographics – nor the product attributes, but to the specific circumstances around the job to be done.

Penconek explains Jobs Theory: “It’s the idea that people don’t so much buy products as hire them to perform jobs in their lives . Successful innovators display empathy – they clearly identify the circumstance where consumers struggle or have unmet aspirations and innovate around these.

“Breakthrough innovations are products that solve these issues in a distinctive and compelling way. They communicate it to consumers in a simple way, allowing them to make a clear link between their need and the new product – winners can easily explain their solution to an eight-year old child.”

A selection of winners below illustrates how Breakthrough Innovation was achieved this year:

  • Robinsons Squash’D identified a massive growth opportunity by changing consumer habits around the mature squash category, producing a new portable format so people could flavour their water out of the home. It generated over £11 million sales in 2014.
  • Scholl’s Velvet Smooth Express Pedi came about after listening to women’s unmet needs around their foot care routine. The solution to ‘hard skin’ had hardly changed in 100 years and led to consumers creating their own – potentially harmful – solutions. Scholl found a manufacturer producing electronic foot files in small quantities and, after positive testing results, ended up launching in 48 countries.
  • Sure compressed deodorant cans are a new disruptive technology, the biggest sustainable innovation the aerosol category has seen in over 30 years. Unilever global VP Mariano Sampietro explains: “We identified the biggest areas where, as a category or brand, we had an impact on the environment and society. This turned out to be waste, and within waste, the biggest contributor was aluminium from cans.” The new product contains 50% less gas and 25% less aluminium. The technology was applied to all Unilever deodorant brands and Unilever aren’t seeking to protect their innovation but to share it as wide as possible with other manufacturers.
Mark Schulzig, responsible for innovation management at Beiersdorf – the maker of Nivea’s winning launch – explains: “The ‘magic’ behind big innovations lays firstly in strong insight: find it, activate it and don’t change it. Secondly, you need to deliver a perceivable benefit with the product and not just a story. Thirdly, focus on fewer innovations and sustainably support them for a longer period to finally make them big – no innovation is born big. Lastly, the people behind the innovations make the real difference – with us, innovation always starts and ends with the consumer.”

The full Nielsen Breakthrough Innovation Report for Europe is available for free download here.

ABOUT THE NIELSEN BREAKTHROUGH INNOVATION REPORT

Nielsen’s European Breakthrough Innovation Report provides facts, insights and thought leadership on innovation for marketers, based on real observations of impactful launches since 2013. The report is designed to help improve innovation outcomes, and to make every penny invested in innovation go further. The report is based on findings from the launch of 24,353 SKUs, representing more than 8,650 initiatives, from Nielsen’s proprietary ScanTrack Innovation platform, across five key western European markets: UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy. Breakthrough innovations in other markets, particularly Turkey, have also been reviewed and form part of the overall findings.

SADC: towards a common future

Original article: http://www.sadc.int/issues/science-technology/

Part of the vision of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is to develop a region where science and technology drive sustainable social and economic development, alleviate poverty and disease, and underpin the creation of employment opportunities and wealth. Most of the challenges facing regional integration as identified in Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (2003) such as food security, energy, water, transport, communications infrastructure and human resources development will require scientific and technological solutions.

Science and Technology as a cross-cutting theme in the region can be used to develop and strengthen national systems of innovation in order to drive sustained socio-economic development and the rapid achievement of the goals of the SADC common agenda including poverty reduction and eradication.

Protocol on Science, Technology and Innovation

A Protocol on Science, Technology and Innovation was signed by SADC Heads of State and Government in Johannesburg, South Africa, in August 2008. It is a blueprint document that outlines the framework of cooperation between Member States within the SADC region. It came about through extensive deliberations between Member States and covers scientific and technological matters of interest within the region. Some of the aims and objectives of the Protocol in the region are to:

  • Strengthen regional cooperation and coordination;
  • Promote the development and harmonisation of policies;
  • Share experiences and pool resources;
  • Promote public understanding, awareness and participation;
  • Promote the value of Indigenous Knowledge Systems and technologies;
  • Attract, motivate and retain scientists;
  • Strengthen institutional capacity and facilitate institutional cooperation and networks;
  • Enhance and strengthen the protection of intellectual property rights;
  • Increase access to the teaching and learning of basic science and mathematics; and
  • Promote gender equity and equality in the teaching and learning at all levels of education.

Read more about Science, Technology and Innovation and their contributions to social and human development in the SADC region.

Relevant Documents

Responsible Unit

What is process innovation?

Original article: http://www.innoviscop.com/en/definitions/process-innovation

“Process innovation means the implementation of a new or significantly improved production or delivery method (including significant changes in techniques, equipment and/or software). Minor changes or improvements, an increase in production or service capabilities through the addition of manufacturing or logistical systems which are very similar to those already in use, ceasing to use a process, simple capital replacement or extension, changes resulting purely from changes in factor prices, customisation, regular seasonal and other cyclical changes, trading of new or significantly improved products are not considered innovations.”

Building a weather station

Open Data Durban in partnership with The MakerSpace Foundation hosted International Open Data Day in a dual-charged effort to ignite openness and participation in the Durban community. Together with environmentalists, ecologists, data wranglers, techies and active citizens we built an Arduino weather station. According to Arduino.cc “Arduino is an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software.”

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How did we promote diversity in the day?

On arrival participants had to select different coloured stickers of what they thought represented their interest and skill set, choosing either a data wrangler; a maker; an environmentalist; techie and more importantly learners.  The latter being an obvious choice to Mondli, Nolwazi and Nosipho three learners from Umkhumbane Secondary School, located in Chesterville, a township on the periphery of Durban CBD. We invited the learners as part of our data club’s programme, where learners will also be building an Arduino weather station which will be rolling out soon.

It was essential that the teams were made up of each of the skill sets above to: ensure the project speaks to the broader theme of informed decision-making through the micro-weather station data; assisting participants assemble electronics; make sure the IoT device is programmed through code; to gain critical environmental insights towards practical use of the tool and more importantly to enable and create a guild of new-age active citizens and evangelists of open knowledge.

IMG_20170309_110315

 

Each team was provided with an Arduino weather kit consisting of dust, gas, temperature and rainfall sensors and all other relevant components to build the weather station. We did not provide the teams with step by step instructions for the build. Instead, we challenged them to google search the build instructions and figure out the steps. Within minutes, the teams were busy scouring the instructions from various websites such as Instructables. This emphasised the openness of sharing knowledge and introduced the learners to open knowledge and how someone from another place in the world can share their expertises with you.

What were some of the insights from the environmentalists?

Bruce and Lee, both retired ecologist and environmentalist respectively were charming in their approach to problem-solving and tinkering with the electronic parts. Although not well-versed in the Arduino toolkit their gallant efforts saw them learning and later tutoring the learners on building the weather station.

Their insights into the environmental status of Durban was unmatched and painted a grim picture of the Durban community’s awareness of the problems that exist.

What were some of the insights from the techies?

Often at our events, we have a number of techies come in who are brilliant at coding but have no concept of data science or how coding can be used to address various issues such as economic, social and environmental. This event helped to introduce techies to how coding Arduino boards and sensors can be used to gather weather condition data and further use to data to monitor the weather conditions in a given area. This data then allows the public to be aware of their weather conditions such as the concentrations of harmful gases in the air. The city can also map out pollution hotspots and identify trends which aid in decision making to eliminate or manage the air quality.

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How did the learners participate in the session? What were some of their learnings?

There were many different languages spoken by the participants which made communication across all groups a challenge however the confidence and enthusiastic wanting to learn prompted the learners to ask some captivating questions for the group members more notably in their pursuit of understanding how things work in the space.

All the attendees were attempting to build the Arduino weather for the first time. The adult attendees were quite hesitant at first to share what they were doing with the learners because they were not certain if what they were doing was correct or not and did not want to confuse the learners. Once the adult attendees were confident with the method of building, they then began to communicate more with the learners.

Outcomes of the day

We eventually saw one complete weather station built by Sphe Shandu who stayed behind after some team members tinkered with other goods in the MakerSpace, minus the LCD component (no team figured this out).

Learnings

  1. Lend an extra hand to students that engage with maker spaces for the first time in an urban setting, they have a natural innate understanding of the moving parts (3D printers, laser cutter, electronics etc) in the MakerSpace and not necessarily the context of new-age manufacturing, practicality and potential outputs.
  2. After lunch, the teams became quite weary. Progress dived down but the teams managed to pull through and complete as much as they could. Long events tend to be vigorous at the beginning and hit a stall towards the end. A possible lesson learnt is to host much shorter events.
  3. Teachers need to be incentivised to attend the programme outside formal school learning.
  4. Parents prove to be the most difficult stakeholders to engage – although involved in their children’s learning they need to be engaged to attend such functions.
  5. Attendance for community events on Saturday are most difficult to rally large numbers.