The First (or Second) of a Thousand Steps: Car Manufacture in Kenya

Kenya is building cars! For a student of innovation, that’s exciting news. And given my interest in social, inclusive and frugal innovation, news of a low-cost car coming to market, developed for rural and off-road use, using locally-sourced materials, is even more exciting. OK, let me clarify: Kenya has been building (assembling) cars for a while now, but only […]

The Study of Innovation and Sustainability… What about Politics, Economics and Culture?

“Sustainability” is a notion that is hotly debated across academic and non-academic arenas. What does this term mean? The term has its origins within environmental movements, thus the common layman understanding that sustainability is synonymous with ‘green’. Over time however, the connotations of the term have evolved to incorporate economic and political overtones. Many conceptualisations of sustainability exist now across […]

Innovation and the Luxury Fever

I recently read Robert Frank’s book Luxury Fever – Why Money Fails to Satisfy in an Era of Excess (1999) after a particularly enlightening course on consumption theory. This was one of those courses that made me rethink some previously held philosophies about consumption, capitalism and even innovation. Among other topics, the professor talked briefly […]

Innovation in Africa: Looking ahead 2014

Trendwatching.com has published a bulletin detailing “5 must-know African consumer trends to run with in 2014”. Below are the highlights: FABA (For Africa By Africa): African solutions to African challenges done the African way Mobile roaming: The other ‘mobile’, i.e innovation boosting commuter freedom, logistical flexibility both physically and digitally. Civil info-nation: Africans will embrace even more […]