The Social Innovation Project II is a platform co-created by Ashoka School of Changemakers and Global Study and Social Entrepreneurship (GSSE) at Thammasat University. This platform allows students to be engaged in project-based learning in order to practice and gain hands-on experience of social innovation. Students to start their own social innovation project by using design and creativity tools with the support of GSSE and Ashoka’s coaching and seed grants. This program is supporting 44 students and 7 projects between October 2015 and May 2016.
On January 19th, the 2nd coaching session was held at Thammasat University. The seven teams came prepared with input from on-the-ground research and observation. In class they created “How Might We” questions which invite input, suggestions, and exploration using key insight statements. These questions facilitated the teams to generate multiple solutions for their projects.
Update of Team’s Progress:
In the past month, the SE Shop team has talked with people and SE owners to gather insight about products and what the need is for SE owners and for university students. They have started getting SE products according to the feedback they have received and are beginning to sell within their faculty at Thammasat.
The team decided to change their goal from “expanding the SE market channel to university students” to “find SE product to best fit university student’s needs in order to change the culture of students’ SE product consumption.”
The team’s next steps are to gather information about student’s budget, use this and other insight to create criteria for what type of food to sell at their shop, and then identify 3-5 products to best fit affordability for students.
Paper Pa’s insight after conducting some research helped them understand better why people do not recycle. Some of their insight revealed that people perceive recycling paper as difficult, some people think it is the government’s role, and others don’t know what recycling is or how to do it. The team has already set up a donation box in their faculty building and have started to receive paper donations.
The team came up with the idea to make paper “fireballs” that are essentially decorative balls made of the recycled paper with lights inside and all attached to a string. However, they have not yet visited the orphanage.
Next steps include: visiting the orphanage to better understand what the orphans’ need are and if their project will be possible there. If the orphanage allows the team to undertake their project, then they need to start preparing the equipment to teach the children, create a prototype of the product and finalizing the design, and coming up with a better more innovative system to collect paper.
The team has collected general information from about 60-70 Social Enterprises.
During the coaching session the team narrowed down their goal from “Helping support SE by creating an online platform” to “collecting in depth information of 200 SEs, SE supporters, stakeholders, government organizations, nonprofits, etc. to make available on MAI’s online database”.
The next steps for this team are to research existing SE supporting models to see how SE stages are categorized, create criteria for identifying stages of SE lifecycle, create a list of SE’s from different stages and different categories to interview, choose interview format and interview 6 SEs from different stages and categories.
Take a Look
Take a Look’s idea is to create a recycle bin that is accessible, easy to understand and easy for waste management to understand. The team found out that there is only 30% of waste being recycled on campus, and there is a capacity for 70% of waste to be recycled.
The team is currently in the prototype phase of redesigning the trash bins at Thammasat University. They have conducted a survey where they collected people’s preferance between four new bin design options.
The team’s next step is to design labels for the chosen bins and to create their viral video which will reach students in Thammasat. The team also plans on continuing their project once the GSSE coaching sessions are completed so they are also seeking support, funding, and connections.
The TU Neighborhood team is focusing on creating a new website platform where students can find student tutors for a lower price and a better experience. Last month, the TU Neighborhood team conducted a survey to find out the average a Thammasat university student spends on existing tutoring services. They found that on average, a student spends 350-500 baht per hour, for 2-4 hours a day, and 2-3 days a week. That is between 6,000-14,000 baht per week.
The team’s next steps are to develop a rough draft of their website, collect more information to create options for lowering the price of tutoring services, and they also must figure out how to attract students to use their website.
The team conducted research of stake holders and found that the supply of eco-friendly products is much higher than the demand for the products. They also found that there is a gap in the app market, there are no apps that specifically provide users easy access to healthy, eco-lifestyle food, products, and fitness.
Green Clean has obtained a website designer who has created the first prototype of their App. The target users of the team’s app are city dwellers and elders whom have chronic diseases or the need to control their food intake because of health reasons.
The team’s next steps are to obtain customer insight from the users of the first prototype and then to use that feedback to create a second prototype.
The Go Grey team interviewed 136 students from the international faculty at GSSE and found out that only 5% of students give thanks to faculty or faculty. The other 95% of students don’t give thanks because of variety of reasons. The team also interviewed the Thammasat cart drivers who reveled that their carts are damaged because of overcrowding of students and they feel that students do not respect them.
The team’s idea is to create a viral video to improve the culture of gratitude at Thammasat University. They have gotten senior director, Mr. Parinya, involved in their project.
The team’s next steps are to talk more to Mr. Parinya and other stakeholders including the student committee and GSSE to further get ideas and needs. The team also hopes to secure more funding to enhance the quality of the video.
All the teams are in different stages in their projects ranging from redefining goals, gathering additional insight, creating ideas, creating prototypes, refining prototypes, etc.
The input the teams collected from on-the-ground research and observation were used by Ashoka coaches to lead the teams in the right direction, to make sure the goals were clear and that their ideas were feasible and relevant to the conclusions from their insight and main goal.
The next GSSE Coaching session by Ashoka will be held tomorrow, March 14th 2016.