STUDY: The BoP Learning Lab in collaboration with innovation specialist Peter Hesseldahl and Nordic Innovation has launched a study looking at the potential for frugal innovation for Nordic companies operating in emerging markets.
Nordic companies often produce high-value products with a focus on design and technology. While attractive and often innovative, they are also expensive and tend to target the needs and resources of the wealthy. Meeting the needs and aspirations of middle and low-income segments calls for frugal solutions. In other words, solutions that focus more on ‘need to have’ as opposed to ‘nice to have’.
Frugal products are often associated with simple and low-tech solutions. This, however, is not always the case. In fact, some of the most advanced services in the world — such as Google search or GPS navigation — cost little or nothing if you, like billions of people from Mumbai to Nairobi do, have a smartphone and access to the Internet.
For the most part, Nordic companies cannot compete with low-cost, low-tech products. However, Nordic companies can draw on deep insights and advanced scientific knowledge based on years of experience. Combined with a frugal approach this knowledge can be leveraged to develop frugal solutions. The High-tech, Low cost report look at what it takes to make this possible.
Read the study here – or on the Nordic Innovation website here.
Listen to what Peter Hesseldal, Senior Innovation Specialist at The Universe Foundation, have to say about HT-LC and the link to the 17 Sutainable Development Goals here (starts at 22min, in Danish).