A study by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there will be 1.4 million new technology jobs by 2020, and many of those jobs will go unfilled. In her home of Des Moines, Iowa, Nancy Mwirotsi noticed the needs of local African refugee families were enormous. Knowing the need for STEM training to fill future jobs, and the need to support struggling local refugee children, she decided there must be a way to do both.
South Africa has 1.9 million people living in informal settlements, a direct result of apartheid. In these high population density communities, it is not uncommon for massive shack fires to erupt. Lumkani’s solution is a device that both detects fires and alerts nearby residents.
Each year, millions of people in the developing world are killed by vaccine-preventable diseases. Vaccines are administered through injection, meaning a trained professional is required. Vaccines also require a sterile environment and constant refrigeration to remain viable. These requirements are difficult and costly to meet in developing countries. However, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are developing a microneedle patch that can quickly and easily administer vaccines that save lives.
Can there be a world without malaria? It will require an expansion of current strategies and innovative solutions, such as the Rapid Assessment of Malaria device, which uses refrigerator strength magnets and a laser point to diagnose malaria, and Malaria Consortium’s use of mobile technology and village health groups to support community health care.
According to a recent study by the CATO Institute, cell phones can be used to document land ownership through a form of consensus community mapping that, if strong enough, could serve as proof weighty enough to force governments to formally and legally recognize the property rights of millions of displaced persons in the Global South.
Imagine a doctor from the Democratic Republic of Congo who can create a prosthetic leg using materials found in his backyard. Or perhaps an engineering student who starts a new craze in acoustic instruments from the comfort of her room in South Africa (Vuvuzelas, anyone?). Custom designs, waste management solutions, home décor, next-generation devices— could all be designed, printed and sold by Africans to Africans and markets beyond using 3D printers.
Treating malaria, HIV, and other diseases in remote and economically depressed areas is a monumental challenge, but accessible testing methods must be in place before treatment can even begin. With half a million deaths per year from malaria alone, there is a desperate need to find an affordable, intuitive, and portable diagnosis solution. To address this, QuantuMDx is developing …
In many parts of the world, flooding and natural disasters can be a seasonal threat to people’s lives. While these may be a recurrent theme in some regions, education on preventive and awareness are not always as readily adopted as humanitarian agencies would like. UNESCO-Bangkok has teamed up with software developer Opendream to address this very problem through a unique approach.
In 2012, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) won a five-year grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation to produce Kreyòl language education resources for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Called the MIT-Haiti Initiative, the project will take open education resources previously developed by MIT, translate them into Haiti’s native language of Kreyòl, make them available to higher education institutions in Haiti, and evaluate their effectiveness.