Innovation@DFID: Crowdsourcing New Ideas at the UK's Department for International Development

July 17, 2017 by Anke Schwittay, Paul Braund

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Over the last decade, traditional development institutions have joined market-based actors in embracing inclusive innovation to ensure the sector's relevance and impacts. In 2014, the UK's Department for International Development's (DFID) Innovation Hub launched Amplify as its own flagship initiative. The program, which is managed by IDEO, a Silicon Valley-based design consultancy, aims to crowdsource new ideas to various development challenges from a broad and diverse group fo actors, including poor people themselves. By examining the direction, diversity and distribution of Amplify's work, we argue that while development innovation can generate more inclusive practices, its transformative potential is constrained by broader developmental logics and policy regimes.