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UNDP Accelerator Lab India launches GRID to foster inclusive development

UNDP Accelerator Lab India has launched Grassroot Innovation Database (GRID) with 1,500 simple to complex solutions for community-level implementation to foster inclusive development

Sonal Khetarpal | November 27, 2020 | Updated 23:56 IST
UNDP Accelerator Lab India launches GRID to foster inclusive development

UNDP Accelerator Lab India has launched Grassroot Innovation Database (GRID) with the aim to foster inclusive development.

The database was launched at Accelerator Lab's first year anniversary today. It contains 1,500 simple to complex solutions, across agriculture and technology which can be implemented at the community level.

The solutions cater to various sectors which include livelihood, natural resource management, agriculture, agro-biodiversity, pest management, water management, farm machinery, biodiversity conservation, augmentation, inclusive growth, waste management, circular economy amongst others.

They have been developed by grass root communities, individuals, start-ups, students and other innovators from various states across India.

The platform GRID is accessible by anybody and everybody. It has been created in collaboration by Grassroots Innovation Augmentation Network (GIAN), Honey Bee Network Institution and UNDP Accelerator Lab India.

"Not all innovators can become entrepreneurs so the GRID network here does very important service to society by reducing the transaction cost of finding information and ideas," said Anil Gupta, Founder of GIAN. He adds, the database is to democratise knowledge and make solutions accessible and affordable, especially for people who want to try out new solutions. So, it has solutions for grassroots and solutions from grassroots. Some of the examples on the portal are manual walnut peeler, tree climber, herbal pesticide, multi-purpose processing machine.

He added, "Our objective is to give voice, visibility and velocity to the creative and innovative communities and improve their livelihood, conservation of biodiversity and associated knowledge system for inclusive development. Lot of practices in GRID are in DIY mode which can be used by people freely: the grid reaches the poorest with possibility of using knowledge about innovations for augmenting their well-being."

GRID works at three levels. At the macro level, GRID demonstrates to the policy makers that there is potential to learn from creative communities and individuals. At the micro level, these solutions that can be implemented on ground in real time, complemented by the fact that being tried and tested the cost of failure is minimal. GRID can also be leveraged for setting up distributed enterprises and for catering to the local or niche markets.

"Today we need to move from the quantitative view of what development means to a qualitative context. In that situation, it is neither feasible nor desirable to harp back to some pristine era that is in the past. But, one need to look forward and see what is kind of world we want in 5 or 10 or 15 or 20 years and imagines that in a doable manner. At the heart of world that the imagine should primarily be to improve the quality of life of the poorest of the poor," said K. VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Advisor, Government of India while launching the platform.

UNDP Accelerator Labs was launched in 2019 with over 60 Lab teams covering 78 countries. The founding investors of the Accelerator lab are the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany. Its aim is to tap into local innovations to create actionable insights for sustainable development.

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