Showcasing digital solutions that drive development
6 June 2023
On 24 May, Finnpartnership, Fingo, Tespack and A Grid brought together companies and NGOs to share experiences on how technology and digital tools can support development. The Technology for Development Forum also highlighted the importance of collaboration between companies and NGOs.
The participants got to hear about the technological solutions developed by Inclus, EZSpeech and Tespack, all stemming from concrete needs to develop tools for services that did not exists before and that could be used in the Global South. EZSpeech has developed a virtual speech therapist whereas Inclus has created an inclusive risk management software that originated from complex peace mediation processes.
Tespack is specialised in developing mobile energy solutions. At the Forum, the company presented its wearable technology developed for off-grid purposes and, together with World Vision Finland, shared about the positive outcomes of working together to bring the technology to people in remote areas.
Tespack and World Vision Finland both benefited from Business Partnership Support for implementing their joint project in Uganda. Tespack was granted funding for a commercial project whereas World Vision Finland applied for funding for a Support Function project. The set-up where a company applies for Business Partnership Support for a commercial project and an NGO for a Support Function project is the concrete way in which Finnpartnership aims to spur collaboration between solution providers and NGOs.
Closing the event, the speakers highlighted the principles of digital development and exchanged openly about possible obstacles regarding implementation of technologies as well as misconceptions between NGOs and companies. Heikki Almay, Co-founder of Poutanet shared about the challenges Poutanet has faced when implementing digital solutions, for example related to regulatory issues, and how the company has addressed them. Poutanet provides private mobile networks for co-operatives and communities, and has received Finnpartnership’s Business Partnership Support for piloting the technology in different countries in Africa.