Appropriate Technology is technology that is suitable to the social and economic conditions of the geographic area in which it is to be applied, is environmentally sound, and promotes self-sufficiency on the part of those using it.
Mayan Bicycle Social Case Study
Maya Pedal is an NGO founded in Guatemala in order to support the economy and the very sustainability of the rural area, the group provides solutions to local needs for energy self-sufficiency.
By reusing bicycles that are unused or abandoned, this group rehabilitates and becomes machines aimed at facilitating the daily activities of social groups away from conventional energy sources.
But one thing that we must ensure, is that the projects that are developed are wanted, appropriate and sustainable. Read more about the Bicycle Machines Social Case Study here.
Solar Sisters is a social business that uses an “Avon Lady”-type model to distribute solar equipment in Africa. It’s been operating for more than eight years and now works with about 1,500 women entrepreneurs in three countries. The women buy solar lamps, solar phone chargers, and solar panels at cost, then mark up the items at retail, pocketing the difference. Solar Sister provides training and support, helping the saleswomen reach their goals.
“Solar Sister eradicates energy poverty by empowering women with economic opportunity. We combine the breakthrough potential of clean energy technology with a deliberately woman-centred direct sales network to bring light, hope and opportunity to even the most remote communities in rural Africa.
Investing in women is not only the right thing to do, it is the smart thing to do. Solar Sister creates sustainable businesses, powered by smart investment in women entrepreneurs. When you invest in a woman, you invest in the future. Join us by making an investment in a Solar Sister Entrepreneur today.”
Engineering for People
Engineers Without Borders are a global organisation who promote globally responsible engineering around the world.
The Engineering for People Design Challenge provides students with a set of real issues faced by one of the communities they work with and challenges you to propose engineering interventions that could make a difference. As a result, there are no predetermined right answers and there are likely to be multiple possible solutions. Just as in a real engineering role, you will need to work out an appropriate solution and justify why you think this is the case.
1. The Lifestraw
2. Rocket Stove
3. Hippo Roller Water Project
4. Free Wheelchair Mission
5. Bike Powered Water Pump (see above)
6. Pot-in-pot Refrigerator
7. Universal Nut Sheller
8. Concrete Canvas Shelters
9. Solar Powered Lightbulb
10. One Latop per Child
What are the global implications or unintended consequences of engineering design that need consideration, such as exploitation of child labour, depletion of forestation, water or food shortage implications, health, wellbeing or sanitation implications, breaches of international agreements, or other factors?