Delivering change at scale looks very different to the first efforts to incubate an idea.
At first, innovations may take the form of a new tent, a new way of delivering education in camps, or a new block-chain-based system that allows transparency for smaller NGOs.
Taking these ideas to scale may then require changes to everything from procurement systems and camp management manuals, to international payment systems.
This cannot happen without field-testing and evidence, to help humanitarians to understand if an idea is scalable, what the right path to scale might be, what changes might be necessary, and what we need to continue to learn in order to be effective.
Three major obstacles to scaling innovation...
The fragmented humanitarian community does not have a model that allows it to ‘price’ an innovation; in other words, to determine the potential impact and effectiveness of a new solution when compared to an existing one.
GAHI will work to develop robust and open standards for collecting evidence on innovations, as well to understand the limitations of such learning processes.
To achieve the required changes for impact at scale, the right stakeholders must be engaged at the outset. They should be engaged in: identifying which initial ideas should be taken to a wider audience; designing the ‘pricing model’; understanding and acting on the lessons from initial expansions; and designing system-level changes that will enable significant impact.
GAHI will convene the humanitarian system around concrete areas of action to deliver results.
We cannot achieve our goals without consistent political signals around the need for change that create an authorising environment for experimentation; that empower and encourage the global heads of policy at major organizations to embrace risk and innovation.
GAHI will work at the global level to secure political commitment.