Unexpected connections: Interning with UNDP

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Filed under: Guest posts HIV Other

"I have been fortunate to be surrounded by a truly eclectic group."  The author and her fellow interns at work  (Photo: H.I. Cagatay Ozdemir)

“I have been fortunate to be surrounded by a truly eclectic group.” The author and her fellow interns at work (Photo: H.I. Cagatay Ozdemir)

Since my first day at the Istanbul Regional Hub, many people have been struck that I came all the way from Canada for an internship.

What was a Canadian student like me going to pull from an experience in Istanbul?

What people do not perhaps realize from a first glance is that this opportunity did in fact provide many unique and crucial connections for my professional development. And after discussing with my fellow interns, I see that I am not the only one who found such unexpected connections.

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Next stop Athens: Kyrgyz agro-innovations on the move

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Filed under: Development Social innovation

Tilek Toktogaziev, the winner of Future Agro Challenge Kyrgyzstan 2015 competition

Tilek Toktogaziev, the winner of Future Agro Challenge Kyrgyzstan 2015 competition (Photo: Limon.KG Internet publication)

Congratulations! Kyrgyzstan’s trip to the future continues in Greece.

Do you remember our first blog about the Future Agro Challenge contest in Bishkek?

Kyrgyzstan’s inaugural Future Agro Challenge Kyrgyzstan 2015 competition culminated with a bang on 21 June. UNDP in Kyrgyzstan and KG Labs embarked on the very first steps in bringing together thought leaders and experts in Kyrgyzstan’s agricultural sector under one roof to discuss Central Asian agricultural innovations.

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About Roma by Roma: Micronarratives research in Serbia

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Filed under: Human rights Poverty Social inclusion Social innovation

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Micronarratives everywhere! See our post on how we’re using them in Tajikistan

With the Decade of Roma Inclusion nearing its end, what do Roma themselves have to say about  education, employment, housing and discrimination?

How do we get not only reliable data, but also insights into real needs?

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Tajikistan: Can re-inventing the wheel be innovative?

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Filed under: Central Asia Development 2.0 Social innovation

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What prevents women from owning businesses in Tajikistan? (Photo: Aid for Trade project)

Story collection through micronarratives is not a new method for UNDP.

It has been used to collect data on employment in Kyrgyzstan, to better understand Roma needs in Serbia, and working with youth in Georgia, to just to name a few.

But never has it been tried and tested in Tajikistan, until now!

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Breaking the silence in Kosovo*: If not now, when?

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Filed under: Gender equality Peace and security Social inclusion

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A new tribute in Pristina, aptly named “Thinking of You”, displays thousands of dresses hung up on washing lines symbolizing the hidden and silent survivors of sexual violence. Photo: Visar Kryeziu / Associated Press.

This month marked the 16th year anniversary of the conflict in Kosovo, but the silence on the sexual violence that took place has yet to be broken.

The topic itself is still a social taboo. Rape is treated as though it were a death sentence and those who have experienced sexual violence are often shunned and discriminated against by their families, spouses, and communities.

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A school powered by the sun: Shining example from Croatia

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Filed under: Development 2.0 Environment Social inclusion Social innovation

A group of students around a table

A new academy in Croatia is teaching the tricks of the trade when it comes to crowdfunding.

We all want the best for our children. A good school is often at the top of that list.

Unfortunately, for many schools in Croatia today, the high cost of energy bills poses a challenge.

The Ostrog Primary School, located in sunny Dalmatia, is changing that narrative.  A 25 kW solar energy plant, mounted on the roof of the school, helps it to produce all the energy it needs.

And the best part? It happened without state support or any burden on the tiny school budget.

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8 ways to make innovation the norm in a UNDP Country Office

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Filed under: Development 2.0

"I want you to innovate"

We at UNDP in Armenia recently invited the brilliant folks over at Futuregov to come to Yerevan and see if they could quantify the progress in our own innovation work to date.

They made an assessment of the work of our innovation lab Kolba, and gave us recommendations to help us expand the innovation mind-set throughout the office.

We hope that sharing some of the highlights may help those of you on a similar journey.

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All Aboard the Big Data Express!

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Filed under: Development 2.0 Social innovation

Srbia (3)

Visualization of geo-located tweets, Serbia floods, May 2014, UNDP.

The world is changing fast—and so must our approaches to persistent development issues.

An ever-increasing number of people and devices and objects now generate data – social networks, mass media, transportation, mobile phones, credit cards, etc.

What matters now is not how much data we have, but rather what can we do with all of it.

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Going to scale: A green economy project in the SILab makes good

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Filed under: Development 2.0 Environment

Map of recycling points in Minsk

Minsk on the Greenmap: See all the recycling points, places where one can donate/exchange their unwanted stuff.

This journey began during the first Social Innovation Lab organized by UNDP in Belarus back in September 2014.

Local NGO ‘Center for Environmental Solutions’ winning idea back then was called Greenmap.by – an online resource and mobile app providing information on available recycling points in a number of cities around the country..

Since then – with UNDP’s support – the project was introduced in two pilot cities and a promotion campaign featuring our friend Grandpa Trofim was launched  to encourage environmentally friendly behaviour.

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