Women in development
The women of Sapa
Gender in Ghana
vision SOCIAL ENTERPRISE FOR SOCIAL IMPACT
CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT SOCIETY
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Contents 22 20
Page 3 Letter to the Editors Page 4 Alexandra Dreier & Katharina Jung Is development outdated? Page 6 Olivia Crabtree Women in Development Q&A Page 9 Ankur Desai How tech empower individuals Page 10 Rachael Millson The Social Enterprise Academy Page 13 Nina Jeffs The ‘Wave’ of social enterprises Page 14 Robin Watts The Women of Sapa Page 16 Sophie Wilson How Fair is Fairphone? Page 18 Michael Higginbottom Social entrepreneurship and gender norms Page 20 Jacob Arbeid Co-ops in the 21st century Page 22 Alexandra Dreier Human-centred design in Tanzania Page 23 Credits
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Has development become an out-dated concept KATHARINA JUNG & ALEXANDRA DREIER DURING THE LATER stages of colonialism in the 20th Century, “Development” meant a rejection of the past, because the “traditional” was seen as the opposite of Development and that “the poor hopeless peasant can only be rescued by an enlightened, educated elite” (Coulson, 2013). Therefore “Development” was part of the oppression by the colonizer. Many people argue that it is still a form of controlling the Global South today: “Development is about […] the spatial reach of power and the control and management of other peoples, territories, environments and places” (Crush, 1995) The question arises now if, as a consequence of this definition of “Development”, any interventions in the Global South by NGOs from the Global North, should be abandoned? Vanessa De Oliveira Andreotti suggests that white people have to decolonize their minds by “abandon[ing] that the first/ Developed/ Western world is ahead in progress/ time” (de Oliveira Andreotti, 2011) and aspire to meet on equal footing. However, the German organisation Glokal e.V. mentions in their publication “Education for sustainable inequality? A postcolonial analysis of materials for development education in Germany” that it is equally important to keep in mind that the global interconnectedness resulting from globalisation cannot make us all equal, because of the unequal power relations that have developed and are being constantly reinforced (Danielzik, Kiesel, & Bendix, 2013). It becomes clear that Development work in the Global South can very easily be a new form of colonialism in terms of racial superiority resulting in the reproduction of Eurocentric narratives and epistemicide, if the White person engaging in projects in the Global South does not actively immerse her or himself into scrutinising her/his own superior position in the global system of power relations, and tries to find ways of how to overcome the issues that come with it. “Development studies does not tend to listen to subalterns and postcolonial studies does not tend to concern itself with whether the subaltern is eating.” - These words by Christine Sylvestre depict the conflict many western development workers and scientists are facing. The burning question is if development aid furthers dependency is there any legitimacy for the “west” to engage in challenges like Climate Change, forced migration or inequalities in the
Global South. Not resigning in front of this dilemma, a group of students from Germany and Uganda founded the social enterprise: GlobalMatch. Jeffrey Sachs affirms that “the pathways to sustainable development will not be identified through a top-down approach, but through a highly energised era of networked problem-solving that engages the world’s universities, businesses, nongovernmental organisations, governments, and especially young people, who should become the experts and leaders of a new and profoundly challenging era.” GlobalMatch’s vision is for young people all over the world to have equal opportunities to shape our global future; they learn from each other and shape reality on equal footing. This involves a change in mindset: specifically, a move away from the postcolonial notion that doers are only found in the Global North, whilst people from the South are victims in need of education. Our world is already connected through digital media. In the Global South smartphones and internet access also shape day-to-day life. GlobalMatch leverages this connectivity to unite young people from different parts of the world, one by one, according to their interests, professional backgrounds and other personality criteria. As “simply” connecting people is not enough to overcome historically shaped thought patterns and power relations, an online training enables the tandem partners to analyse and confront postcoloniality as part of their encounter. The core of each partnership is a joint project for sustainable development that is planned and executed in the flow of design thinking. In a nutshell, this connection allows participants to share opportunities with each other, learn together and from each other, harness their potentials and build bridges across cultures. Coming back to the initial question if development is an outdated concept, I would affirm that - yes it is. But that does not mean that global engagement is a dead end. Until now it has been a one-way street. The challenge will be to transform it into a pathway of mutual learning and engagement. All “for the Global South” should be transformed into “with the Global South”. It should be an imperative to every development student to come up with initiatives that make cooperation at eye level possible – similar to what GlobalMatch does.
Response ALEXANDER MCWHINNNIE
RATHER THAN DEVELOPMENT agendas set, formed and decided by people in Europe amongst other places, that are in part motivated by a need for a political reflect, what is required I would suggest is a dialogue that understands and appreciates others, their contributions, strengths and struggles. A dialogue that values them as people with their own collective histories and lived experiences. That enables their authentic voices to be heard and their collective wisdom to be shared and recognised. It is an inability to see and recognise the value present in other places that motivates giving in ways that promote similarity rather than in ways that value what other places have to offer. It is co-operation and global understanding that is two way and enables the emergence of shared complexity that we all contribute to that is the new agenda to strive for. To see engagement otherwise is to retain ‘colonial mentality’.
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Women in development Insights from the field OLIVIA CRABTREE THIS TERM CUID and Cambridge University Women in Business (CAMWIB) hosted four inspiring women working in development. They shared stories and experiences from their illustrious careers, including advice for students aspiring to enter development. Alison Tilbe is the Head of the Goodwill Ambassador Programme at UNHCR. Sarah Epstein works in media and public relations at UNHCR. Olivia Chapman is the Entrepreneurship Project Director of the Cambridge Development Initiative. Rachel Flaherty is a Humanitarian Policy Manager at DFID. The topics covered ranged from the gender pay gap, to academia and development, to the #MeToo movement. Below are some adapted questions and answers from the Q&A session that was held at the end of the talk: From a career perspective, what are your opinions on the value of coming into international development straight away, or beginning your career somewhere else and getting experience, then going into international development? Alison: If you know that you want to go into certain areas, such as communications or fundraising, and then you need to get certain skills. However, that doesn’t have to be in a development organization. When I’m recruiting somebody, I’m not just interested in their commitment to development, even though I want to see that passion, I’m also looking at the skills and competencies you have; you can get these in a variety of ways. If you don’t have a particular niche in mind, then in a sense you can be a generalist. Sometimes it is more useful to get yourself in the organization, rather than in the specific area that you want. Once you’re in and you demonstrate that you’re a good employee, often the learning and development opportunities open up and you can move between teams. Lots of people
are generalists in the UN. Don’t feel that you have to get the specialism early on; work hard, get to grips with the basics, think about how you can be useful and get useful transferrable skills. Reflect on what your skills and competencies are- you need to know how to package and present them. Sarah: Working in international development is like being an international civil servant. I am first and foremost a media specialist, I could transfer to the corporate world. But I am working in international development- but this is specific to what I do. Rachel: Being a generalist is also nothing to be ashamed of. I sometimes get imposter syndrome when I’m sat in a room full of experts, but I bring a different set of skills. I can look at things from a strategic level, I can make links across issues, I can think about reputational risk and the politics, because I am not stuck down in the detail of some particular area. As a generalist you bring a different, important skill set. It is important to take a step back and think about the impact you can have on international development. Olivia: I specialized academically pretty early in within a politics and economics degree. I did lots of unpaid internships, which is unfortunately the internship culture in Washington DC, and I thought nobody would care about the more events management focused experience I have, but actually that is what people asked about the most. They appreciated my academic background, but they wanted to know why I did all those other things and how I could bring these skills and make them useful. Once I got into development, I did lots of grant writing and worked in lots of areas of development. I ended up becoming a bit of a specialist, but to even get these research positions I had to start out at the bottom. Did you all have a sense of where you wanted to go in terms of academia or working in the field and what skills do you need to do well? Olivia: I would say look into organisations that you want to work for. I knew what organisa-
language is a perquisite. Rachel: I’d say languages are a really useful skill to have, and I’d also say don’t rule out the private sector. The private sector is a huge force in development and people automatically rule it out, but there are huge opportunities and you get paid more.
tions I could see myself in, in that case I saw that I needed a Master’s. My advice is that you don’t need to plan out your future for the next 60 years, but at every step of the way, stop, take some time to think and re-evaluate. What you do now isn’t going to commit you to a certain pathway for life; if you do join a big organization, you will start at the bottom and have to commit a great deal of time to get to the really good positions. But if you get a higher level degree, it will not do much difference. Sarah: If you aspire to work in the UN, it looks as if having a Masters and having a second
What do you see as the main sectors in development in terms of types of jobs? Alison: Obviously there is fieldwork in developing countries and frontline jobs, which have huge numbers of varying things. Then you have sectors such as child protection, Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), health, logistics. There are also people on emergency rotas within the UN, where there are probably few women, which I think has to do with childcare; it is hard to be part-time or have maternity leave when you’re in an emergency zone. In UK charity work and NGOs, there are divisions such as fundraising, which can be divided into public fundraising, corporate partnerships, foundations and trusts; communications, which can be divided into the media team, ambassador relations team; policy and advocacy, where you work with government and DFID. Then there’s also HR, finance and digital… Olivia: Development is practice: implementation, monitoring and evaluation. All of this is either direct, on-the-ground, project-related stuff, or something you would be directing from an office somewhere in the Western world. Rachel: In the wider sector, there are economists doing economic policy and lending, or academia and research, think tanks, financial institutions. It goes on and on, but don’t just think about charities and the UN – you should look way beyond that. Ultimately, for development to happen, you need trillions of pounds of investment. Traditionally, charities and NGOs can only go so far; to get development globally, it won’t come from the old development model, it has to come from private sector investment.
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M-PESA: how technology empowers individuals and enables development ANKUR DESAI AS WE MOVE closer to a cashless society, it is easy to overlook how technology has made everyday transactions and payments easier. We can now pay for our shopping with the tap of a card, or transfer money to a friend with the tap of a button. Gone are the days of cheques and paper statements; now everything can be done through a single app. But whilst in countries like the UK this technological revolution is making our lives easier, in many developing countries this type of technology is helping to bring people out of poverty. One such example is ‘M-PESA’, which celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. M-PESA was first launched on the 6th of March 2007 in Kenya by Safaricom, an affiliate of Vodafone. The service has seen tremendous growth over the last decade- M-PESA is now active in 10 countries, with 29.5 million customers at the end of 2016 (Vodafone 2017). The system allows users to convert their cash into ‘mobile money’, which is stored in a secure account linked to the user’s mobile phone. Being able to store money in digital form has made everyday tasks easier and more efficient for those in developing countries. For urban residents, remitting money back to their home villages is easier and safer than sending money via mail or public transport. For workers, being able to digitally receive their salaries reduces corruption from superiors stealing a share (BBC 2017). For businesses, M-PESA makes it easier to trade, and reduces the possibility of theft. One of the reasons M-PESA has had such a revolutionary effect is that it is able to include those who are left out of a traditional banking system. Bank accounts are often inaccessible for many in developing countries; illiteracy, lack of nearby bank branches or being unable to meet the minimum deposit requirement all restrict usage of financial services. This can be problematic, as Tavneet Suri, a leading econ-
omist at MIT researching M-PESA, explains in an article in Vox (2016). Having cash saved at home increases the likelihood of it being spent, either on impulse or by other family members. Storing the money in a digital account reduces this risk. M-PESA has also proved useful in times of crisis, making it easier for friends and family to send money to those affected. In a 2014 paper, Suri and William Jack (an economist at Georgetown University) analysed this phenomenon, finding that households using M-PESA did not change their consumption when affected by income shocks; while households without the service found their consumption changed by seven percent. The authors argue that the reason for the difference was that it was easier for M-PESA users to receive money, and that they were connected to a more diverse range of people. All of this has had a real impact on poverty reduction. Jack and Suri explored the impact in a 2016 paper, finding that as many as 194,000 households may have been brought out of poverty. In particular, Suri notes the gender effectsfemales using M-PESA were more likely to move into business from subsistence agriculture. Possible reasons for the switch were that women were given more access to credit through M-PESA, or that the service allowed gave them more control over their finances, through a reduction in the possibility of their money being spent by family members. Since emerging in 2007, M-PESA has revolutionised the way people live in Kenya. As this type of technology becomes cheaper and more widely available, we should see it spreading even further that it already has, and bringing even more people out of poverty. Better access to credit, making it easier to adjust to crises, and empowering women to control their own income are all factors that make M-PESA a real force for social impact and development. Now that is something to phone home about.
“M-PESA has revolutionised the way people live in Kenya”
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The Social Enterprise Academy RACHAEL MILLSON OVER THE LAST few years we’ve seen the theme of Social Entrepreneurship grow exponentially. Just last month three inspiring social entrepreneurs from Cape Town returned from the World Economic Forum. They joined many other social entrepreneurs in Davos, ready to open the eyes of traditional business to new ways of using business principles to tackle major issues facing our world, such as poverty, marginalisation and climate change. Social entrepreneurs are transformers and innovators. They question the way things have always been done and propose alternatives that revolve around making the world a better place. They take a problem solving approach to the many social and environmental challenges we face, using their skills to help people and planet. Their vehicle of social enterprise promises, in Africa, to craft a response to the multidimensional poverty challenge and to help us meet the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. With its unique focus on both social and economic aims, social enterprise is a viable alternative to both the charity and private sector approaches as it combines the best of both. As Social Enterprise Academy Africa, our role is pivotal. Based in Cape Town, the Academy supports social entrepreneurs to establish and then grow their social enterprises. We launched in 2015 as a partnership between the Academy based in Scotland and Imani Development, development economists working across sub-Saharan Africa. We’ve worked with over 1,000 learners in that time. Following a model of social licencing the second African hub opened in Malawi in 2017, with Zambia and Rwanda to follow in 2018, thanks to support from the Scottish Government’s International Development Team. Their Beyond Aid agenda focuses on increasingly sustainable, enterprising approaches to development within priority nations.
Across Sub Saharan Africa there is a documented need to grow the enabling environment, entrepreneurial culture and supply chain development in order to achieve continued poverty reduction. This is due to a gap in the business support infrastructure transferring entrepreneurial skills as found in many developing economies. Offering learning programmes focussed on leadership, social entrepreneurship and social impact, our work feeds directly into that need as we support organisations to further build their social impact and financial viability. Using a unique blend of peer-based learning, our programmes also build strong networks of connected changemakers. Sharing best practice from South Africa and globally, our programmes inspire existing and emerging social entrepreneurs, showing what’s possible and building skills and confidence. WEF attendee Tracey Chambers of the Clothing Bank and her co-founder Tracey Gilmore, are great examples of best practice in South Africa. The primary mission of The Clothing Bank is to financially and socially empower unemployed mothers in order for them to eradicate poverty in their lives. Their business model revolves around using the excess stock of retailers to teach women how to run small businesses. Goods received from retailers are consolidated, repaired if required, priced and sold at affordable rates to women who sell these clothes in their communities, while simultaneously taking part in a 2-year development programme. The Clothing Bank has scaled to 5 regions in South Africa within 3 years, helping 800 women per year to break the poverty cycle. http:// www.theclothingbank.org.za/. Their innovative approach to impact measurement, using the Poverty Stoplight tool (see http://www. povertystoplight.org.za/) has made it possible for the Clothing Bank to more effectively measure progress against their mission and
programme objectives, adapting their programme along the way to be even more impactful. In addition Tracey Chambers explains that as a result of Poverty Stoplight, the Clothing Bank has “seen significant changes in the way families are taking responsibility for their own journeys out of poverty”. Within the Academy we also run programmes that allow students from developed countries to gain first-hand experience of social entrepreneurship in South Africa’s emerging economy. In partnership with the Universities of Cape Town and Oslo, for example, each year a group of thirty students undertake internships in social enterprises across Cape Town, alongside supporting academic study provided by the world-renowned Bertha Centre for Social Innovation. Students complete “junior consulting” assignments which are based on a key deliverable requested by their host organisations, from developing impact measurement systems to designing communication devices for the severely disabled. A highly successful example
was through Township Patterns, a social enterprise whose core purpose is to create meaningful and sustainable economic opportunities for women in South Africa’s township communities. Their student consultant built an app that assesses business performance of women’s co-operatives in their supply chain, for more information see http://township.co.za/. At Social Enterprise Academy Africa we strongly believe that social entrepreneurship has a clear role to play in responding to the sustainable development goals, at community, regional and even global level. We’re excited about playing our part in enabling this change to happen. Keep in touch with us about being involved in any of our programmes. For more information visits www.socialenterprise.academy/za. Sign up to our newsletter and like us on facebook - SEASouthAfrica —Twitter – SEA_SouthAfrica
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The new ‘wave’ of social enterprise WAVE IS A new app that enables users to send money cheaply and instantly to Africa. It’s target users are the continent’s diaspora as it enables people to send money from their smartphone to the recipient’s mobile money account in East Africa or Ethiopia. This sort of tech innovation is characteristic of the tidal wave of social enterprise coming from the Global North to aid life in the Global South. But what role does it play in existing development frameworks? Whether one celebrates or condemns ‘Wave’ depends on how development is conceptualised, and whether the development of the individual or the economy is prioritised. The app improves financial access for individuals in the most direct way possible, and removes a smaller proportion of these funds in the process of doing so. This enables a range of social changes to take place. A 2016 paper in Science (Suri & Jack) found that the mobile money system M-PESA lifted 2% of Kenyan households out of poverty since its introduction in the country. They found that this effect was particularly strong in female-headed households, and argued that this was because M-PESA made financial transactions easier, enabling women to go from agricultural occupations into business. Given that women’s control over financial resources is a key concern for many not-for-profit development interventions, it is promising that social enterprise is also tackling this important issue. On the other hand, Wave relies on one-way money flows from the Global North to South. Whilst mobile money empowers people
to undertake entrepreneurial enterprises, Wave is about one-way transactions from emigrés to their family at home – and this is an important difference. It could be argued that Wave continues a cycle in which successful young people are encouraged to go overseas, rather than invest their skills in the domestic economy and hence remove important human capital from where it is most needed. Dependency theorists might also see it as characteristic of the cycle of dependency between the Global North and South. If this money is used for survival by people in developing countries, evidence from IMF researchers Maelan Le Goff and Kangni R Kpodar suggests that this may increase dependency on international aid – a concerning dynamic given the increases in remittances in recent years. However, Le Goff and Kpodar also found that “remittances lead to lower aid dependency when they are invested in human and physical capital rather than consumed”. This is because remittances in this case feed into the economy as a whole in addition to benefitting the lives of individuals. Wave enables a larger injection of financial capital into developing economies – the key issue is really about the opportunities available to the recipients to use this in productive ways, something government agencies are potentially better placed to deal with. Although Wave is a for-profit enterprise, it has been lauded by some ‘Effective Altruists’ for its practices. Wave charges 3 per cent on each transaction, which undercuts Western Union and MoneyGram, the only other existing
companies for sending remittances, which both charge rates of 10 per cent. Of course, for Wave this is a strategy to get ahead in the market, but it also has huge positive impacts based on the relative purchasing power of money in different countries. According to the analysis of the Effective Altruism organisation 80,000 Hours, for each dollar of revenue Wave makes, they save $2.33 for someone in the world’s poorest countries. Given that last year’s remittance flows to developing countries totalled $429 billion (several times larger than global Official Development Assistance), Wave’s reduction of the cost of sending remittances by 70% could result billions of dollars being accumulated by people in developing countries if it were to be expanded globally. Indirectly, Wave could have a more significant financial input than many key donor countries – and this is a reason for optimism about social enterprise. Profit motives are justifiable when it comes to social enterprises like Wave because it ensures the sustainability and expansion of the projects. Profits can be reinvested into improving mobile money technology, which is highly likely to drive prices down, and of course into expanding its market. With the rapid growth of M-PESA and other mobile phone based payment systems in East Africa, these is certainly room for expansion on the African continent – and it seems increasingly likely, worldwide. Non-state development interventions are often criticised as being illegitimate, or crowding the public sphere of developing countries, where people should be able to use their own agency to pursue their personal goals. Wave enables people to pursue their own goals by streamlining an existing process.If development ultimately means improving the welfare of individuals, then we should hope that the ‘Wave’ continues to wash over our shores.
Enterprise for Impact
‘Social Enterprise for Social Impact’ is our flagship conference rounding off the academic year. Taking place in Easter 2018 and co-hosted by CUiD and the Cambridge Union, the day will consist of several panels and speakers from international development who will focus on a variety of topics especially pertinent to our day and age. The theme for our conference looks at the intersection between business and development and whether there is a place for the expanding private sector and business models of thinking. How can we harness the benefits of business mechanics in our approach to development? What even are the benefits? With discussions from female empowerment to potential conflicts of interest that stem from the crossover of enterprise and impact, the conference will be an exciting and ultimately insightful event that allows for an in-depth exploration of development’s most pressing current issues. Moreover, there will also be networking opportunities and a buffet at the end! We are incredibly grateful to our sponsors whose support has allowed for us to price our conference tickets at an affordable standard. Early-bird for students will be £3 and £5 for non-students. After the initial period, they will be £5 for students and £8 for non-students. 13
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The women of Sapa ROBIN WATTS â€˜BRACELET, CLOTH OR coin purse?â€™ This is the
choice of embroidered handcrafts presented on a mountain trail in northern Vietnam, with steep cliffs and rice fields in the background. The seller is a woman of the Red Dzao tribe. She will have woken up before dawn to walk to Sapa town, which will be heaving with tourists at first light. As a group of walkers heads in to the countryside she will follow them, making conversation with the English she has learned precisely from carrying out this daily routine. If they pass through her village she may show them her home and introduce her children. She might even show them the barrel of dye that gives her clothes their distinctive indigo shade. She will walk with them for several hours to make this sales pitch and will then return to town try and pick up another group. The stunning scenery of this mountainous region of Vietnam has ensured a thriving adventure tourism industry since the 1990s and the women of the Sapa region are capitalising on the income opportunities it has provided. As well as making crafts and selling them to trekkers, many are using their local expertise to act as walking guides, while others have turned their homes into tourist accommodation. Social enterprises have sprung up such as the Sapa Sisters. Owned and run entirely by Hmong women, they organise guided treks for tourists. The traditional dress of these more fortunate women makes a stark contrast with the smartphone held to their ear, used to make arrangements with clients. The economic empowerment of the women in the area is re-defining their role in the household. These female entrepreneurs are experiencing to some extent liberation from their traditional domestic role, with many becoming breadwinners for their family alongside the men working in the rice fields. Learning Eng-
lish from interacting with tourists gives them a usable skill that few of their husbands will have, allowing the women to shoulder some of the responsibility for income, as well as their duties at home. There are many different ethnic groups living around Sapa, recognisable through their distinct languages and dress. A women of the Red Dzao ethnicity can be identified by a bright red head headband. However, the tribes and those within them are not all advancing at the same rate. There is an atmosphere of competition as the women of different ethnic groups often group together to try to secure the business of a group of tourists. Only the luckiest will gain employment at an enterprise like the Sapa Sisters; for the many that are less confident or speak less fluent English, making a living out of tourism is more challenging. Moreover, these liberating effects are coming at a cost. The women of the Sapa region continue to be victims of human trafficking, where they are kidnapped and taken across the
border to be sold in China as brides. This phenomenon stems from the traditional preference for a boy under Chinaâ€™s one child policy, which is fuelling an increasing gender imbalance. In 2016, Chinese authorities rescued 207 Vietnamese women from a cross-border trafficking ring, but many more are slipping through the net. Working outdoors alone, or in small groups, from morning until night undoubtedly increases their exposure to these threats. The ongoing transition in the Sapa hill tribes from subsistence living to consumerism would make an evaluation of the long term impact, in terms of wealth and living standards, premature. It remains to be seen how the tradeoff between female economic empowerment and exposure to crime, as well as inequalities stemming from competition, will evolve in the future. Nonetheless what can be said for certain is that many children will be the first in their family to be sent to nearby towns to go to school. They have the enterprise of their mothers to thank for that.
â€œThe women of the Sapa region continue to be the victims of traffickingâ€?
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How fair is fairphone? SOPHIE WILSON TO THE ETHICAL consumer, it is often difficult to ensure that the food or clothes you buy are sustainably sourced. Though in some ways problematic, recognisable certification and labelling schemes go some way towards indicating where product supply chains have fulfilled certain ethics, minimum pricing and workers’ rights criteria. To the consumer of ethical electronics however, identifying sustainable alternatives to common products can be even more challenging. Fairphone is a social enterprise launched in 2013, which designs and manufactures environmentally-conscious smartphones. This is difficult, given that the average smartphone, which utilises more than 60 different metals, is “one of the most globalised products you can imagine” in the words of Fairphone’s public engagement manager Fabian Huhne. Fairphone products are notably free from the four conflict minerals: gold, tin, tantalum and tungsten, which were called out by the 2010 US Dodd-Frank Act for having financed rebel groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The company has attracted a major following and has sold over 125,000 handsets. But just how ‘fair’ is Fairphone, and what impact has its arrival made on the consumer electronics industry? A key part of the Fairphone offering is the ethical sourcing of raw materials. Fairphone has used conflict-free tin and tantalum in the DRC since 2013 and focusses on procuring conflict-free tungsten from Rwanda. In 2016, the company claimed to have established the first-ever Fairtrade gold supply chain for consumer electronics. As there are significant social and environmental challenges involved in gold mining even outside of conflict zones
such as land disputes, wage depression, child labour, dangerous working conditions and mercury pollution, this is welcome progress. The establishment of an alternative supply chain also sets an important precedent for an industry in which demand for gold is third-largest, after jewellery and the financial sectors. Yet there are several notable caveats to this achievement. First, Fairphone does not directly mine raw materials, but instead partners with local sourcing organisations. Smelting partners mix Fairtrade gold with non-Fairtrade gold in the supply chain, due to the low volumes of gold required for Fairphone products. This is not ideal, but Fairphone are also considering the use of recycled gold for future production, as another means of lessening demand on non-Fairtrade gold sources. Second, Fairphone’s gold is sourced from Peru, a non-conflict region, rather than the DRC. However, the company continues to work with human rights groups to build sustainable gold supply-chain initiatives in the more complex environment of the DRC, which may eventually substitute the Peruvian gold supply. Fairphone also claims to improve conditions for factory workers through an initiative called the “Worker’s Welfare Fund”, which is effectively a forum in which workers can raise their concerns to their employers. The fund is derived from phone sales, but the small size of the company means that fund proceeds are modest; the first Fairphone model generated $125,000 in funding. In terms of wages, Fairphone mandates a minimum wage in its partnerships with suppliers, but has not yet introduced a minimum wage.
“Consumers must remain critical of Fairtrade labels, and seek information on ethical standards criteria”
vision Green Machine Fairphone and major electronics manufacturers featured in Greenpeace Greener Guide to Electronics, Oct 2017
Perhaps one of the most notable impacts Fairphone has made is in raising awareness and establishing a blueprint for ‘better’ practice. Fairphone has presented the first real ethical alternative within the electronics industry for conscious consumers and implicitly calls on incumbent industry players to do the same. Fairphone is the clear ethical choice, topping Greenpeace’s Guide to Greener Electronics ranking in 2017. This creates an imperative for Samsung, Sony and other manufacturers to address growing consumer concerns on the sustainability of their supply chains. In the future, new technologies such as the blockchain, with its implications for environmental data collection and prov-
enance verification may also increase public expectations around supply chain traceability. Finally, it is important to note that even the very status of Fairphone as a for-profit social enterprise, and not a charity, raises our awareness of what more responsible market practices could look like. Fairphone should be critiqued in the light of its aims. It “isn’t 100 percent fair”, in the words of Fabian Huhne, and doesn’t attempt to solve all issues within consumer electronics manufacturing. Yet it is a step in the right direction and creates an important tension within the industry. Whilst absolute positive impact on demand for conflict minerals may be marginal due to currently low scale economies, this will no doubt grow with increased product traction and legislative pressure. Whilst the literature surrounding Fairphone’s ambition is in some places loosely defined, with reference to “aims” and “objectives” but few concrete standards, the company has chosen to manufacture a highly complex product, which must address ‘fairness’ in the many countries from which it sources components. Fairphone’s goal is to produce an incrementally sustainable product, whilst continuing industry advocacy efforts within global consumer electronics supply chains. Whilst Fairphone has provided a valuable and viable purchasing option for the conscious consumer, the devil is in the detail. Consumers must remain critical of ‘Fairtrade’ labels, and seek information on ethical standards criteria. Whilst Fairphone might represent the most ethical choice for purchasing a smartphone today, the consumer must continue to take an active interest in such details.
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How a young social entrepreneur from rural Ghana is changing gender norms MICHAEL HIGGINBOTTOM AYISHA FUSEINI GREW up in a family of ten in Tamale, a rural area of northern Ghana. From an early age, she played her part in the family trade – producing shea butter – by spending long hours with her mother to process the shea nuts she had helped to collect. It was a challenge for Ayisha’s family to afford her school fees and there was a real risk she would be forced to drop out of school without finishing her education, like millions of other girls in sub-Saharan Africa and across the world. Against the odds, Ayisha was able to graduate from school and began working towards a diploma at the local polytechnic. At the same time, she joined the Camfed Association (or CAMA), a network of young women supported by UK-based NGO Camfed (the Campaign for Female Education). Camfed was set up in 1993 and the seeds that were sown 25 years ago have since blossomed across Africa. Camfed supports marginalised girls and young women through school, as well as supporting them onto new lives as entrepreneurs and community leaders. To complete the “virtuous cycle” and create sustainable change, graduating students become CAMA members, many of whom now lead Camfed’s programmes, and return to school to train and mentor new generations of students. Since 1993, the organisation has directly supported more than 1.9 million children to go to school in Zimbabwe, Ghana, Zambia, Tanzania and Malawi. It has also improved the learning environments for 4.5 million children at more than 5,400 government partner schools. Through CAMA, Ayisha took part in a business innovation programme delivered by Camfed in partnership with the MasterCard Foundation. This provided her with entrepre-
neurial training, an internship, a small grant and, crucially, mentoring support. The programme empowered Ayisha by developing her skills and giving her the confidence to think big about how her enterprise could transform the lives of women in her community. Harnessing her new skills, her support network and her intimate knowledge of her family’s business, Ayisha founded Asheba Enterprise, a social enterprise that trains and employs local women. Like Ayisha’s mother, many of these women were labour workers at the bottom of the supply chain, never making any profit. Through Asheba Enterprise, the women now gather shea nuts, produce high quality shea butter and sell it directly to end customers, rather than through middlemen, thereby ensuring higher profits. Before long, Ayisha had created four cooperatives that help more than 200 women generate an income. Alongside this work, she has set up a school for her colleagues’ children and runs classes to improve the women’s literacy and business skills. Ayisha’s work was recognised internationally in 2015, when she was invited to speak in front of senior government officials and CEOs at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in Geneva. During the same year, Ayisha was selected by the government of Ghana to receive Youth Enterprise Support, which she used to build a factory to expand her business. She has also become an international supplier for The Body Shop. In January 2018, Ayisha’s work received further acclaim at the Invest in Africa Awards, where she accepted prestigious awards for Female Entrepreneur of the Year and Business Innovation of the Year.
Ayisha’s primary motive isn’t profit, but a deep commitment to empowering women in her community to become self-reliant social entrepreneurs. “When women are free financially, they make better decisions, and are heard,” she says. Social enterprises like Ayisha’s are helping to regenerate rural communities by addressing local needs and solving real problems that impoverished families have been facing for generations. A highly-respected businesswoman, Ayisha is changing gender
norms and unravelling gender stereotypes. She was even asked by her community to run for local office. Camfed talks about the “multiplier effect” of its programmes and there is no better example of this than Ayisha. She is creating change in her community, not just by providing opportunities for local people, but through gaining respect as a female leader and role model and changing aspirations for girls and young women for generations to come.
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Co-operative developments How an idea first formulated in the 18th century could hold the key to sustainable, equitable growth in today’s cut-throat, globalised economy JACOB ARBEID
THE LAST FEW years have not been easy for global capitalism. Increasing inequality and discontent with globalisation’s uneven fruits have raised political revolt from Philadelphia to the Philippines; all the while, unsustainable business models and over-consumption threaten long-term ecological catastrophe. Yet despite this, rewards at the very top- bonuses and shareholder dividends-continue to climb. Last year, Vittorio Colao - who as CEO of Vodafone heads up the UK’s sixth-largest company - saw his salary climb to £14m, despite his company facing ongoing legal action by Ofcom for violations of customer protection law. By contrast, his counterpart in Spain Jose Maria Ormaetxea - chief manager for Mondragon, Spain’s sixth-largest enterprise by revenue - has his salary capped at 8 times that of Mondragon’s lowest-paid employee, and drives to work in a second-hand Ford Fiesta. The contrast is not because Ormaetxea is particularly unassuming, or Colao particularly greedy, but in the two companies’ different structures. In contrast to Vodafone, Mondragon is a co-operative, and its workers each have an equal say in its running: a simple idea, but one that nevertheless holds the potential for more inclusive, sustainable economic development worldwide. The co-operative movement began in 1761 in Fenwick, Ayrshire, when 16 industrial weavers banded together to share risks, profits and promote mutual support. It received a key patron in the form of the Welsh Industrialist Robert Owen, who from the 1830s onwards encouraged the development of worker-owned co-operatives across the Commonwealth and Europe. From the 1950s onwards, the movement found enthusiastic proponents in newly-decolonised nations seeking to chart an authentic, independent path between the cold-war extremes of capitalism and communism. Today, the International Coop-
erative Association reports 2.6 million member co-operatives, generating an income of $2.2 trillion with over a billion members. Co-operatives take many forms: they can be worker-owned (as with Mondragon), customer-owned (as with Britain’s Co-Operative group), or take the form of credit and banking unions. Ultimately, all conform to the fundamental principle of economic democracy, and unlike shareholder-owned companies, are strictly one-member-one-vote when it comes to corporate decision-making. Yet the question must be asked: while co-operatives can promote equality, is their egalitarian vision not a bit idealistic? Without a dedicated leadership under pressure from demanding shareholders, can cooperatives remain profitable, and innovative, in the long run? Perhaps the answer lies in our own expectations of cooperatives: far from the utopian hippy communes of popular imagination, firms like Mondragon are “private companies that work in the same market as everyone else-exposed to the same conditions as competitors”, in the words of its HR chief Mikel Zabala. Yet perhaps that is not entirely so: the sense of collective ownership every decision must be supported by a majority of workers - gives co-operatives like Mondragon greater legitimacy when tough economic conditions call for wage cuts or layoffs, often bypassing unions or expensive rounds of collective bargaining entirely. This fundamentally gives co-operatives a greater flexibility, to which Zabala attributes Mondragon’s strong economic performance: even when Spain was mired in recession with 26% unemployment, Mondragon reported export growth of 10% with less than 100 layoffs. If the cooperative model can provide dynamism and flexibility, then it can also provide stability: hence the fact that in over 75 years, not a single one of Germany’s 1200 mutual co-oper-
Co-opted Established in Fenwick, Ayreshire, the movement has had huge impact globally
ative banks has filed for bankruptcy, which the IMF ascribes to their strong mutual-protection scheme that sees them bail out failing members, and a structure of customer decision-making that has been praised for avoiding the kind of perverse incentives and short-termism that in more hierarchical banks led to the Great Recession. The model’s success has been emulated worldwide: credit cooperatives are thriving in Rwanda and Kenya, where they account for 90% of housing credit in a nation where bureaucratic corruption and lack of infrastructure make conventional funds hard to come by. Meanwhile, the Mexican and Ugandan governments have in recent years passed laws extending legal recognition to cooperatives and offering professional training, help and certification. Yet in today’s world, stability is by no means synonymous with success; far more likely stagnation. To fulfil their development potential, co-operatives will have to prove they can innovate. This may prove particularly difficult given that the great innovation success story of the last two decades has been the rise of the rigidly hierarchical Silicon Valley, whose winner-takes-all attitude has propelled the likes of Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg into the ranks of the global
“The Cooperative model isn’t perfect, but they’ve proven capable of creating equitable, sustainable, and empowering economic development”
elite. Yet across the world, co-operatives have proved themselves capable of producing innovation through globalisation, technology, and drawing on the ideas of their members: whether in the Kenyan credit unions’ extensive use of mobile banking, or the small-scale Japanese grocery collective who partnered with an Israeli data analytics firm to provide lower prices than conventional supermarkets. They’ve also proved themselves capable of a different kind of sustainability that goes beyond mere stability: the power co-operatives can give to local communities - who suffer most from corporate environmental damage - ensures the movement has a built-in tendency towards sustainable development. In Lesotho, local communities have banded together in agricultural co-operatives to share chemicals and equipment, eliminating redundancies and reducing their environmental impact; many hope to go further, pooling funds to construct solar panels. Finally, given their un-hierarchical nature, it’s also unsurprising that cooperatives have a record of challenging other hierarchies in society: the Wakiso region of Uganda, for instance, has seen a network of housing co-operatives build up that have proved crucial in empowering women, refugees and HIV-positive people to leave the Namuwongo slums where they face flooding, abuse and exploitation. A recent article in the Journal of International Development confirms this: women in Northern Uganda who became members of agricultural cooperatives experienced a long-term increase in their households’ food security and agronomic knowledge, and enjoyed greater decision-making power at the household and community level as a result. The co-operative model is not perfect; in many countries rent-seeking and over-bureaucratised legislation has put them out of reach of ordinary citizens when compared with more streamlined hierarchical businesses. But across the world, from Kampala to Cambridge and Chiapas to Chennai, they have proven themselves capable of creating equitable, sustainable and empowering economic development on a long-term basis. The Co-operative movement began as a response to the first Industrial Revolution. Now, as technology and globalisation create what many are calling a ‘new Industrial Revolution’, it might be worthwhile to return to that idea which has made our species stand out above the rest: cooperation.
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Using human-centered design methods to re-think educational projects ALEXANDRA DREIER
I STARTED “JAMBO Sanaa” (“Hello Art” in Swahili) as a ‘side project’ of the German NGO Jambo Bukoba and therefore based my initial ideas of how I wanted to structure the project on Jambo Bukoba’s concept of empowerment. Empowerment for Jambo Bukoba means, on the one hand, to encourage children to think critically about health issues such as HIV/AIDS, as well as gender equality. On the other hand, it means conducting teacher workshops using their “Life Skills Through Games” teaching guide, which is supposed to allow local teachers to integrate games surrounding health and gender education into their daily teaching. After my first visit to Kayanga Primary School in the region of Kagera, Tanzania in 2016, however, I already saw the difficulties that came along with my presence: as a White person, who does not speak Kiswahili fluently and was neither an artist nor art educator by profession, standing in front of a group
of primary school children. Conclusively, I decided that my role was to “inspire” and to help fundraise for the art activities the teachers and children wanted to do, as opposed to teaching them myself. But I was still in this mindset of thinking about Tanzania in terms of deficiencies and acting out of perceived guilt of having had a great upbringing, with endless opportunities to be creative. I never challenged my assumption of what empowerment really meant for the children at Kayanga Primary School and what my position really is, as the initiator of this “Development project”. The concepts of decoloniality/ decolonisation were fairly new to me, but, as I have come to realise, very crucial for the continuation of Jambo Sanaa. Luckily, during my studies of the MPhil ‘Arts, Creativity and Education’ I got introduced to Vanessa de Oliveira Andreotti’s HEADS UP checklist (where H=hegemony, e=ethnocentrism, a=ahistoricism,
d=depoliticisation s=salvationsim, u= uncomplicated solutions and p=paternalism), which I now use as a guide for human-centered design to rethink and eventually redo my social startup “Jambo Sanaa”. Hegemony In order to not justify superiority and support domination, I must not impose on Tanzanians what I perceive to be right, because I do not want to reproduce what colonisers and missionaries have done during colonialism. As many educational scholars have explained, the primary goal of education should be to “develop the democratic subjectivities (knowledge, skills, attitudes and values) of […] citizens to enable them to become actively engaged in contributing to the global common good.” (Drinkwater, 2014, pp. 44-45). Therefore I have to find out what teachers, children, community members and policy makers in Tanzania really see as the priority in (arts) education. Additionally, in the interest of developing strategies to decolonise through arts education, I have to find out how the stakeholders in the specific context I am working in perceive the post-independence period, to what extent they value the importance of arts education, and how they conceptualise “the arts” and “creativity”. Salvationism In order to avoid presenting people “in need” of art education as helpless victims and myself as the “saviour”, I could encourage artistic production where members of the community work together to find solutions of problems or new approaches to their cultural epistemologies. I could, for example, develop an artistic project where children at Kayanga Primary School have the opportunity to conceptualise the forced cotton production during German colonialism. I got this idea from Kara Walker’s art-
vision work “A Subtlety” where the artist re-evaluates what it means to be an African-American woman. She deals with decolonization not as a metaphor, but manifests coloniality in the materiality of sugar. “Walker’s gigantic temporary sugar-sculpture speaks of power, race, bodies, women, sexuality, slavery, sugar refining, sugar consumption, wealth inequity, and industrial might that uses the human body to get what it needs no matter the cost to life and limb. “ (Thompson, 2014) Doing a decolonial art project that stresses the materiality of colonialism could therefore help the children and the teachers to find out by themselves what coloniality means and how it affects their lives. Paternalism A crucial part in disengaging paternalism is the critical engagement with the funding model of Jambo Sanaa. Because as Drinkwater mentions, “[…] the introduction of neoliberal educational reforms under […] aid relationships have not only failed to achieve the goals of equality and freedom […], they have contributed to a dependency relationship with the Global North […]” (Drinkwater, 2014, p. 52). Redoing Jambo Sanaa consequently means, refraining from the “donation model” because this creates dependency. I, therefore, have to talk to different stakeholders in Kayanga (parents, teachers, district education officers etc.) in order to find out, how they perceive the importance of Jambo Sanaa for children in Kayanga, and how we can find a way to finance it. Uncomplicated solutions By dealing with the topic of decolonisation through arts education, it becomes obvious that I am ultimately striving for systemic change, rather than offering easy solution. One of the big questions I kept asking myself, as I understood more about decolonisation through arts education in the Tanzani-
an context, was to find out how I can reconcile helping the children and teachers at Kayanga Primary School to reconnect to their heritage, but not deny them of their right to be part of cosmopolitanism. Walter Mignolo, for instance, conceptualises decolonial cosmopolitanism as “multiple trajectories aiming at a trans-modern world based on pluriversality rather than on a new and good universal for all” ((Mignolo, 2010, p. 111) in (Drinkwater, 2014, p. 23)), which emphasises the rejection of the Eurocentric epistemology of the origin of everything “modern” in the Global North, as well as the acceptance and appreciation of different epistemologies. His quote gives the rationale for the focus on the unveiling of the great traditions in the African arts and cultures through arts education, but at the same time Mignolo agrees with Zachary Rosen on the fact that “[…] we must be cognisant of these trends [emergence and alteration of traditions and so-called subcultures] in relation to cultural production and how it translates through art.” (Rosen, 2015). Obviously, there are many challenges related to the rethinking and redoing of Jambo Sanaa, such as the underestimation of the importance of the arts by many Tanzanians (Hatar, 2001) (Enamhe B. B., 2013), the lack of financial resources (Enamhe B. B., 2013), as well as the lack of adequate teacher education (Shule). Those are challenges to work on with the community and gatekeepers likewise, in order to make it possible that time is allocated for artistic activities, be it as part of the curriculum or as extracurricular activities. Issues like “overempowerment” through arts education noticed by teachers have to be addressed ((Sanga, 2009) in (Shule)), as well as a missing allocation of budget for arts education from the Ministry of Education in Tanzania (Shule).
CREDITS Co-Editor Issy Houston
Sub-Editor Sara Kachwalla
Co-Editor Yomna El-Serafy
Sub-Editor Lucia Keijer-Palau
Artistic Director Daniel Gayne
President Annabel Mahgerefteh
Sub-Editor Olivia Crabtree
Sponsorship Charly Pressdee
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