Our Perspective

A new year, a new approach: It’s time for innovation!

02 Mar 2017 by Ignacio Artaza, Country Director, UNDP Pakistan and Beenisch Tahir, Innovation and Communications Consultant, UNDP Regional Bureau Asia & Pacific

UNDP’s New Year’s resolution for 2017 is to push for innovation in Pakistan - not only as a way of tackling development challenges, but also as a way of thinking and working at the office. A new landscape has been emerging in Pakistan as social innovators, entrepreneurs and businesses seek innovative solutions to addressing problems that affect community groups. Led largely by young Pakistanis, there has been a rapid rise in start-ups, innovation labs, hackathons and the use of web-based and mobile phone applications for information, services and finance. Entrepreneurial activity has increased as well as incubators and co-working spaces are set in place. Many social enterprises are addressing critical challenges in health, education and poverty. The Government has also revealed an appetite for innovation as Vision 2025 introduces e-solutions to education, health and citizen engagement. UNDP kick-started its innovations portfolio to remain responsive and relevant to people’s needs in the development context. UNDP’s Asia-Pacific innovation experts arrived in Pakistan last month to showcase and explain tools and ideas being used successfully elsewhere. For UNDP, innovation is not an end in itself; it is about finding better ways to create impact for people by providing new opportunities to start-up businesses, improving … Read more