Next Article in Journal
Status of Nature Reserves in Inner Mongolia, China
Next Article in Special Issue
Methodological Approach for the Sustainability Assessment of Development Cooperation Projects for Built Innovations Based on the SDGs and Life Cycle Thinking
Previous Article in Journal
How to Promote Sustainable Relationships between Heritage Conservation and Community, Based on a Survey
Previous Article in Special Issue
Implications of Reverse Innovation for Socio-Economic Sustainability: A Case Study of Philips China
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sustainability 2016, 8(9), 888; doi:10.3390/su8090888

Potential and Pitfalls of Frugal Innovation in the Water Sector: Insights from Tanzania to Global Value Chains

Water & Development Research Group, Aalto University, P.O. Box 15200, FI-00076 Aalto, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Vincenzo Torretta
Received: 30 June 2016 / Revised: 29 August 2016 / Accepted: 30 August 2016 / Published: 2 September 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1407 KB, uploaded 2 September 2016]   |  

Abstract

Water is perhaps the most intertwined, and basic, resource on our planet. Nevertheless, billions face water-related challenges, varying from lack of water and sanitation services to hindrances on livelihoods and socio-economic activities. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) recognize the broad role that water has for development, and also call for the private sector to participate in solving these numerous development challenges. This study looks into the potential of frugal innovations as a means for the private sector to engage in water-related development challenges. Our findings, based on a case study and literature review, indicate that frugal innovations have potential in this front due to their focus on affordable, no-frills solutions. However, we also recognize pitfalls related to frugal innovations in the water sector. Although the innovations would, in principle, be sustainable, deficiencies related to scale and institutional structures may emerge. These deficiencies are linked to the importance of water in a variety of processes, both natural and manmade, as well as to the complexity of global production-consumption value chains. Increasing the innovations’ sustainability impact requires broader acknowledgement of the underlying value chains and their diverse links with water. A holistic view on water can mitigate water-related business risks while increasing wellbeing on an individual level. View Full-Text
Keywords: water; frugal innovation; Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); sustainability; value chain; product development; R&D water; frugal innovation; Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); sustainability; value chain; product development; R&D
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Hyvärinen, A.; Keskinen, M.; Varis, O. Potential and Pitfalls of Frugal Innovation in the Water Sector: Insights from Tanzania to Global Value Chains. Sustainability 2016, 8, 888.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top