by and

Filed under: Development

If you wanted to learn more about UNDP’s strategy – the issues and how we’re tackling them – in a particular country, how would you go about doing it?

Look through the UNDP country office website? Read a bunch of reports?

What you’re probably looking for is something that cuts through the dense jargon, the endless acronyms, and the development doublespeak.

Sometimes getting the most basic information can be the hardest thing to find.

We want to change that.

So that’s exactly what we did in Uzbekistan.

We brought together key staff and brainstormed these very questions. We wanted to move above project-level narratives to get to the bigger picture issues that key audience groups care most about.

Once we developed the storyline the next question was: How do we package it?

We decided to create an online product that shows – more than tells – through a series of compelling photos what our work in Uzbekistan actually looks like on the ground.

>> Check it out, we’re launching today!

This dynamic yet easy-to-follow story illustrates how the country office is strategically tackling development challenges:

The product is divided into three main ‘streams’:

  • Land, water and our future

  • Governance for everyone

  • Supporting communities

undp-rbec-uzbekistan prez second

Each issue is divided into sub-issue, and each sub-issue is spliced into ‘challenges’ and ‘solutions’, to show exactly how UNDP is addressing the challenges.

The idea is: let’s stop talking about our work through internal structures; instead, let’s discuss issues that people care about, and how we are addressing them.

Going forward, we believe our focus should be on agile content that is short and digestible, better attuned to how people actually see the issues and consume information. We hope this product helps us move forward in that direction.

What do you think? We’re always looking for new and compelling ways to tell our story:

Can you suggest some other interesting ways to present and package development?


  • Blythe Fraser

    Nice job Peter and Laylo! I appreciate how difficult it is to distill complex development issues into such short text. It requires people who have the big picture, and managers who understand and support the need to try it a different way.

    Not only that but your presentation shows the importance of photos and visuals – and web design skills. I vote for more in house developers and designers/design thinkers!

    One example I’ve been admiring lately is

    Anyway, well done guys – I hope we see more of this type of packaging from big and small development organizations and traditionally wordy/wonky institutions and governments. Bravo!

  • Olena Ursu

    Peter and Laylo, congratulstions! I loved the way you present what your office is doing. I envy you in a good way and I dream that some day I will follow your brilliant example!