Innovate

We work in over 100 countries implementing programs that tackle a wide array of issues affecting people’s lives on a daily basis.

Working with diverse cultures requires us to constantly develop new ways of understanding the local context and engage with our program participants at their doorstep. Solutions that work in one context may not fit another. Listening to local perspectives to generate location-appropriate responses supported and carried out by our program participants is fundamental to our work. As a multi-faceted organization, we then seek to infuse international experience and transfer knowledge to encourage adaptive learning across borders.

Since my IVLP program I have proposed the study of several US policies and laws related to IP and technology transfer. These studies have been useful on the formulation of proposals for a science and technology policy that was requested by our president.

WHA Participant, Protection of Intellectual Property Rights

Today’s high-speed world fueled by widespread use of the Internet and other disruptive technological innovations has opened new horizons for outreach through virtual platforms. We see this as an opportunity to make our services more accessible and relevant to more people. We are among the first organizations to be awarded funds from the Stevens Initiative, which supports virtual-only exchanges – a fast growing area transforming the work we do and the people we can serve. Our Digital Young Leaders Exchange Program (DYLEP) is another virtual exchange program that connects students from Iraq and the U.S. via video chats and small group idea forums that also foster friendship and understanding.

Algeria Tech CampIn addition to leveraging technology to expand our program reach, we also create opportunities for our program participants to explore technology and learn how to incorporate its use in their work.   

But it’s not only technology that drives our innovation. New ideas from different projects and regions cross-pollinate and create new ideas and tools.  Recognizing the importance of this synergy of ideas and solutions, we are opening new channels for innovative thinking to flow freely through the organization to be shared, fine-tuned, and adapted to a rapidly changing world.

As a self-reflective organization, we constantly evaluate our work and look for better and more efficient ways of doing things.  This includes increasing our effectiveness by building evidence-based models, and continuing to seek out diverse partners.