What is the Pro-Poor Mapping Project? 

The Mapping project maps and tracks innovations that creatively reduce poverty and its effects. Different projects, systems, and processes are being designed, manufactured, and implemented around the world, although no data systematically illustrates who is creating what where. This project aims to collaboratively generate raw data – your contribution is welcome and necessary! If you’d like to showcase your pro-poor innovation here, or an innovation that you’ve found compelling, please send an email to pro.poor.mapping.project@gmail.com. I’d love to hear from you!

The Pro Poor Mapping project aims to generate a Map of Pro-Poor Innovations : The map showcases where innovations were designed, manufactured, and consumed. It is powered by an Ushahidi platform, which means that anyone can contribute. The map is available at http://www.propoorinnovations.crowdmap.com. It can be updated via sms or online via the crowdmapping platform. More details on contribution will be available shortly.

Why was the Pro-Poor Innovation Index Created?

The index was created as a part of an undergraduate thesis project. I initially wanted to look at different types of pro-poor innovations and group them into categories. However, I found it was extremely challenging to create a large and comprehensive list of pro-poor interventions without feeling like I focused on one geographic region at the expense of others. Moreover, information on interventions and innovations designed in the Developed World were more widely publicized and easy to access than those created by the poor. This would mean creating a skewed analysis.

Given that I’m based out of Canada/Taiwan, I have limited access to innovations occurring in developing communities. That’s why I need your help – if you’re out in the field and are working with a community that’s interested/comfortable with sharing their innovations online in the database, email the index. Ask them to submit information to the Ushahidi map, explaining both their innovation and who they are so credit can be given where it’s due. If you’re part of one of these communities, I encourage you to share this information as well – it would be highly appreciated. The Ushahidi powered crowdmap platform is highly democratic – it allows people to text in information. As a result, if there are individuals or groups without access to computers who want to contribute, I can facilitate the process.

As the project moves beyond initial stages, I hope that a natural grouping can emerge, illustrating both different innovations that exist, and the different networks that drive innovation. I also hope that people will look at the innovations that currently exist and evaluate their effectiveness, use them for information, and apply them to new situations and environments. I hope this site eventually becomes a repository of brief case studies (of both success and failure) that other researchers can use and investigate further.


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