Saturday, May 20, 2017

What is design thinking?

My sketchnote of the keynote address at #DTGC2017
Design thinking to me is a methodical way of critically understanding a problem, and crafting creative solutions to them. It relies more on expressing empathy with your clients, understanding the root of their need/problem, and prescribing innovative and sustainable solutions to them.

At yesterday's Design Thinking Conference in Accra, organised by the Ashesi Design Lab and the Ghana Design Network, participants were introduced to the concept of design thinking and the steps involved in harnessing its simple but effective ideals in solving problems. 
After the introduction, participants were then put into four groups: service design, product design, policy design, and program design. In teams of 5 - 8 people, participants were to design a solution to solve the plastic waste problem Accra faces.

Chart used by my team for our pitch.

My team, A-Z Recyclers (from the service design group), proposed a behavioural change as the solution to the problem. This change would be ensured by distributing dustbins to homes, offices, and at vantage points across the city to be used solely for the collection of plastics. 
These would then be collected by employed individuals/volunteers. Consumers are given incentives (bags/cartons of water, recycled plastic products).
We collect the plastics, recycle them into pellets, and sell them to makers of plastic products such as @trashybags.

My friend Julius (@juliussap) recorded this video of the pitch. 



Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Voter experience: #GhanaDecides 2016

Showing off my political manicure

Today's elections went on smoothly as expected.
I got to my polling station at 8:47am and voted at 10:12am.

I had misplaced voter ID card and therefore went to the polling station with my passport.
I initially didn't want to vote, but decided to test the system and see if I could really vote without my voter ID, especially as I didn't partake in the verification exercise.

My polling station in the Brong Ahafo region -- Mmredane -- was really organised.
This year, there were two queues. One for those whose names fell within the A-G alphabets, and the other H-Z.
This allowed for the smooth election process that took place.

An observation though is that voters sometimes got confused as to the correct queue they had to join. Most thought the queues used first names, others thought their surnames had to be used.
We however discovered that the EC officers were using the very first name on the voter ID card and not first names or surnames.
I was disappointed because we registered by filling a form that explicitly asked for surnames and first, and middle names. I therefore expected the cards to be printed with the same template. Anyways...

I left the polling station immediately after voting as I wasn't playing any social media reporting role as I did for GhanaDecides in the 2012 elections.

I have been glued to my TV set since.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Press Release: Information Skills - Competence in Research

 The Goethe Institut in Ghana is organising a 3-day information Skills workshop from August 23 - 25, 2016. It takes place at the Institut from 9am to 6pm daily.
This is a free workshop targeting individuals that deal with research on a daily basis: university tutors, writers, librarians, journalists, bloggers, among others.

Rouven Rech, a German documentary film maker, is the main facilitator for the workshop. The head of Library & Information Centre at the institute, Gudrun Widlok, is the coordinator.
Rouven will be teaching participants where and how to obtain information, evaluate and analyse it, and how best to use it. His unique skills as a documentary filmmaker would be greatly brought to bare.

This is the first part of a series of workshops the Institut is organising this year. The other workshops would be facilitated by the German journalist Nataly Bleuel, and the Wikipedia Group Ghana, respectively.

A participant of last year's workshop shared his experience here

For participation, please send a brief letter of motivation and an overview of your field of work to: info[at]accra.goethe.org