As part of it's GoFrugal series of blog posts, the Centre for Frugal Innovation in Africa (CFIA) reflects on the role of frugality and frugal innovation in times of Corona in different parts of the world.
The two most recent posts are by Dr Holly Ritchie, and Professors Bhaduri and Knorringa.
Gender and ICTs in fragile refugee settings by Holly Ritchie
In her post Holly Ritchie - 'Gender and ICTs in fragile refugee settings: from local coordination to vital protection and support during the Covid-19 pandemic', Holly Ritchie discusses the use of ICT technologies by vulnerable groups as a way to present both simple and socially embedded frugal solutions which can be employed during the health crisis and beyond.
She looks at the use of mobile technololgies such as Whatsapp messaging by a group of Somali women refugees in Kenya describing how it gave them a renewed sense of personal confidence and connection in a hostile setting, and enabled the development of new collective agency and economic coordination.
It also provided the women with new forms of cultural solidarity and, specifically in the context of Covid-19, a way to share vital health and situational updates.
Covid-19: Should Europe embrace frugality?
In this post, Saradindu Bhaduri and Peter Knorrigna consider whether the two recent crises to hit Europe, the 2008 financial crisis and the current corona crisis, will shake the faith of people in the continent's institutions.
They suggest that the excessive reliance on super-specialization and protocols in decision-making processes makes it difficult for Europe to adapt its institutional working quickly in the face of a crisis. Reducing the over-formalization of Europe's decision-making processes and creating more space for experimentation and improvisation could, in their view, help Europe to adapt more quickly to deal with any future crises.