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Archive for August, 2009

This section is a work in progress.

Academic Journals

Dizdar, Srebren, & Wandiga, Cecilia (1997). Education, Technology and the Social/Economic Order.  American Education Finance Association (AEFA) Annual Yearbook, 18, 36-59 (ISBN: 9780803965614)

Online Media

(in progress)

Print Media

(in progress)

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Presentation to non-profit Community Action groups at the 2008 Westmoreland Community Action Poverty Summit

Presentation Topic: Issues to consider when trying to establish a baseline socio-economic profile for a community.  This guide is targeted towards non-profit agencies attempting to determine what the community needs are as well as how to position the community within a regional context.

Contact:

Carlotta Paige
Professional Community Coordinators
411 Clay Avenue
Jeannette, PA 15644-2124
Tel: 724-527-1002
pcc.carlotta@verizon.net

You can view the presentation slides through this link:

Community Development Profiling Guide

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Guest Lectured during Carnegie Mellon Spring 2009 Course: Global issues, Local Solutions

Course Description: http://www.scribd.com/doc/7843078/Global-Issues-Local-Solutions

Presentation Topic:  Moral Agency in the context of compassionate development (i.e. development approaches which respond to requests from the recipients rather than impose solutions upon the recipients)

Contact:

Indira Nair
Vice Provost for Education
Professor, Engineering & Public Policy
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue, 609a Warner Hall
Pittsburgh, PA  15213-3890
in0a@andrew.cmu.edu

You can view the presentation slides through this link

Cecilia Wandiga Presentation Slides for Global Issues, Local Solutions

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Guest Lecture during Chatham University Fall 2009 Course: Global Management & Leadership

Presentation Topic: An overview of the the current business climate in Kenya as well as cultural norms and isssues a foreign business person needs to consider.

Contact:

Bruce Rosenthal
Director of Business Programs
Assistant Professor of Business
Chatham University
Woodland Road, 116D Falk Hall
Pittsburgh, PA  15232
BRosenthal@chatham.edu

You can view the presentation slides through this link

Cecilia Wandiga Presentation Slides on Business Climate in Kenya

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Independent film producer was interested in establishing contacts with universities.  I connected the producer with key individuals at Carnegie Mellon University and Penn State University.  Both universities will screen the film and are arranging for the producer to guest lecture.

Screening dates:

Carnegie Mellon (November 16, 2009)

Penn State (November 17, 2009)

Contact:

Jeannie R. Magill
Originator and Co-producer
Milking the Rhino
www.MilkingTheRhino.org
E-mail: jmagill18@comcast.net

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Assisted with the identification of idea/stream of consciousness that resulted in a published chapter.

Book:  THE RISE OF RELIGION-BASED POLITICAL MOVEMENTS: A Threat or a Chance for Peace, Security and Development among the Nations?

Chapter: The Politics of Religion in Black Africa: Patterns of Fragmentation and Ectropy (p. 49)

Author:

Jean-Jacques Ngor Sène, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Dpt of History, Policy, International & Cultural Studies
Global Focus coordinator
www.chatham.edu/academics/globalfocus_0809.cfm
Chatham University
Woodland Road
Pittsburgh PA 15232  USA
Ph:  (1) 412-365-2924
Fax: (1) 412-365-1747
Skype: Ngorsene

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November 20, 2007

Hosted a 1 day ec0-industry workshop in Nairobi, Kenya in collaboration with the Centre for Science and Technology Innovations (www.csti.or.ke).  Participants came from a cross-section of industries (academia, government, real estate development, energy, and, print media).  The focus of the workshop was to outline a framework for eco-industry within the Kenyan context.

Main Issues identified:

A. A Need for Best Practice Frameworks that can be Adopted: Government officials expressed a need for policy frameworks that can be adopted and modified.  This example arose during discussion: recycling businesses cannot be allowed to start until two things occur

  1. A landfill management system is put in place (what are best practices?)
  2. An appropriate pricing strategy is developed for garbage (what models exist that also apply to the type of garbage which accumulates in Kenya?)

B. A Vehicle via which Small Businesses can Collaborate: Large multinational firms have the resources to explore new markets, establish contacts, and clear red tape.  Small businesses face a financial and resource challenge when attempting to open markets in foreign countries.  One possible mechanism to begin to overcome this hurdle would be the creation of regularly schedule conference calls and teleconferences focused on a specific theme or industry.  Businesses could then identify potential partners and initiate discussions.  Participating companies would need to be screened in order to ensure they are legitimate business entities.  There was great interest in collaborating with US firms.

C. A Need for Community Participation: Public awareness is key! In order for the community to demand eco-industry products and services, they must first understand why they are important and how they differ from other products and services.  It is also important that products and services are locally appropriate.  This necessitates continuous dialog with local communities in order to properly identify the needs and preferences of local residents.

D. A Need for News Editors to Encourage Reporting on Eco-Industry Issues: Standard news media focus on controversy, conflict, sound bytes, and cursory examinations.  This is the antithesis of the type of reporting that is needed.  Eco-Industry/Sustainability reporting focuses on collaboration, scientific documentation, complex issues, in-depth discussion.  Editors need to allow reporters the freedom to present information in this manner.

You can find additional details here

Nairobi November 20, 2007 Eco-Industry Workshop Documents

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They say “those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.”  One of my biggest frustrations is the amount of time we spend creating “new” stuff because we never bother to check what has been done in the past.

There are many who have come before us and often, those with ideas that were ahead of their time, got ignored.    This does not mean that when an idea comes back the person proposing it is not innovative.  Every person has a unique way of stating things, organizing ideas, sharing information, etc.

As an example, let’s examine the term/concept Open Innovation. The term is promoted by Prof. Henry Chesbrough at UC Berkeley.   (You can find more details on his work here http://www.openinnovation.net/)  Open Innovation is used to describe the process via which a company or organization creates new products and/or services by collaborating with individuals/organizations that are not part of the firm.

I also need to belabor a point.  For those who think the coining of terms is not important, I would strongly disagree.  Terms are very important because, as humans, things are not tangible until they have a name.  Think of it this way, what would you think of me if I came to you and said, “You cannot look directly up at the round yellow ball in the sky which is very bright and gives you heat during the day.”?  However, if I came to you and said, “You cannot look directly up at the sun.”, you would immediately understand me.  At some point in human history, there was no word for “sun.”  Once the term was created, it enabled us to readily understand each other as well as to shortcut our communication process when dealing with this object.  The same principle applies to concepts.

Now that I have stressed the importance of terms, here is an Open Innovation example from Home Depot (cited in InformationWeek.com on May 7, 2001)  http://www.informationweek.com/836/collaborate.htm;jsessionid=3FQNAQNSDRHEXQE1GHRSKHWATMY32JVN

Synopsis Excerpt:  “Few companies are being as aggressive as Home Depot in sharing information with suppliers to drive sales and cut costs….By providing its top suppliers with more detailed information about how its people perform on the store floor, Home Depot hopes to increase its sales as well as those of its suppliers. ‘Hopefully we’ll both end up managing a better business together,’ Home Depot CIO Ron Griffin says….To get the data, suppliers have to show that they can translate a smaller inventory into lower prices and fewer out-of-stock shelves for Home Depot. ‘Then we’ll allow them whatever information they want–sales by store, geography, day of the week, whatever,’ Griffin says….Home Depot first began implementing an electronic data interchange network in 1992; today, 85% of all the company’s dealings with suppliers–from ordering to invoicing–are conducted electronically. Home Depot is working with suppliers to bring consumers into an electronic network, thereby completing the loop among supplier, retailer, and customer. For instance, the company is linking its E-commerce engine to marketing sites operated by manufacturers. Shoppers browsing small-engine manufacturer Briggs & Stratton Corp.’s Web site, for example, are dropped directly into Home Depot’s checkout page if they click the ‘Find a merchant’ button; they can buy from the site if there’s a store in their area….Collaboration may sound like one of those mom-and-apple-pie business ideas that everyone supports, but the reality is that companies such as Home Depot and Franciscan Estates are at the forefront of this wave.

In some cases, companies will share their intellectual property with others.  One example is Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK).  GSK is letting scientists use some of its patented IP in order to create “drugs for neglected diseases.”  Here are links which explain the process in a little more detail:

http://www.tangible-ip.com/2009/gsk-patent-pooling-and-open-innovation.htm

http://www.agyx.eu/2009/07/31/open-innovation-–-or-just-joining-forces/

http://www.open-innovation.net/blog/59-outbound-open-innovation.html

Open Source Drug Discovery http://www.osdd.net/

The concept is not restricted to the private sector.  Here are examples from the government sector http://wiki.milcord.com/wiki/Open_Innovation

Now for the historical perspective:

Thus far my favorite Open Innovator is George Washington Carver (1864 – 1943) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Washington_Carver While he is most famous for sharing his discoveries on the many uses of peanuts, he also was prolific at creating a number of other naturally based products http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,757923-1,00.html

Mr. Carver wanted to help poor farmers in the south to improve their economic status.  Hence, he not only studied natural pest remedies which they could create from crops they were already growing, he also created recipes for home made lubricants and other items they would need as part of the production process.  He held the firm belief that nothing should be thrown away and would show people how to use every aspect of a plant or product.

All this information he freely shared through his Carver Bulletins.  While his inventive genius was recognized by the likes of Henry Ford (they worked together to develop synthesized rubber from soybean), Mr. Carver preferred Gandhi as a role model and felt that his knowledge should be shared for the good of humanity rather than for his personal profit.

In this day and age we think of ourselves as pioneering when we discuss sustainability, eco-industry, or, open collaboration.  However, George Washington Carver accomplished all of this 66 years ago.  Which other pioneers of ideas we consider modern have we overlooked in our global human history?

Bio http://gardenofpraise.com/ibdcarve.htm

References to his body of inventions

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_a_list_of_inventions_made_by_George_Washington_Carver

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/george-washington-carvers-inventions.html

http://askville.amazon.com/George-washington-carver-peanut-experament-things/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=471986

For more information on Open Innovation initiatives you can visit:

http://www.openinnovators.net/list-open-innovation-crowdsourcing-examples/

http://www.openinnovation.eu/artikelen.php

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Any child who has grown up with African grandparents quickly learns that they appear to have a magical repository of wisdom which is virtually impossible to challenge.

One example: the notion that we need to reduce or eliminate our carbon footprints and design zero impact communities.  Run to an African grandparent with this “new found knowledge” and you’ll get no emotional reaction followed by a very calmn response along the lines of “and what do you think our so called primitive mud huts are designed to do?”  All the Western degrees and training leave one searching for an adequate response to this question.

Understanding this background helps clarify why those who have grown up in Africa are never surprised by earth-friendly inventions coming from anyone.   Granted patent filing is not a common practice, but, when it comes to designing Appropriate Technology, African inventors are among the best in the world.

Following are examples of African innovators:

Peter Onyango (tools from recycled materials) http://timbuktuchronicles.blogspot.com/2007/08/peter-onyango-jua-kali-worker.html

Paul Katana (SMS fishing) http://www.cooltoysgadgets.com/news/fishing-net-calls-when-its-full.html

William Kamkwaba (wind energy engineer at 14yrs)

http://williamkamkwamba.typepad.com/

http://www.africanleadershipacademy.org/site/about/students/studentprofiles/williamkamkwamba.html

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