Exploring Maker Fest Myanmar 2019 @ American Center Yangon

Exploring Maker Fest Myanmar 2019 @ American Center Yangon

TCU SISU Team organized a short visit to explore the Maker Fest Myanmar 2019 at American Center with a purpose of encouraging the students’ creative ideas by observing the innovations of various entrepreneurs and business organization. Here, the innovators use their brains, hands, and heart to make things.

The event took place on February 16th 2019 in Yangon. Before this trip, TCU SISU had delivered the design thinking seminar to arouse the students’ creative ideas in problem solutions. In the seminar, the students mainly focus on theory and in this short visit to Maker Fest the students had studied the innovations in practice by the entrepreneurs and organizations.

During the fest, the SISU users attended the paper craft workshop, robot workshop, robot competition, soldering workshop, Myanmar maker culture talk, 3D printing, origami workshop, 4th industrial revolution talk, bucket weaving. By attending this event, our TCU SISU users have gained many ideas and knowledge and they can participate in the INNO FEST@TCU SISU 2019 which would be held soon.

What’s coming up in 2019?

What’s coming up in 2019?

by Mark Anderson & Rose Cawood

Happy Lunar New Year to everyone!

SEASIN is entering its last nine months and it’s an exciting time for the Network. We must now ensure that the project creates a sustainable impact within the partner countries and across the region.

What have we achieved so far?

The Social Innovation Support Units (SISU) are now well established in each of the eight universities. The Units in the Universities have been equipped with new technologies to help them meet these challenges – 3D printers; VR headsets; tablets; and even sewing machines – but perhaps more importantly, individuals are being trained in entrepreneurship, design-thinking and other techniques to unleash their creativity. It’s not all about getting 3D printers and high-tech tools in a room though. Technology is a means to an end. Some partners, such as the Cooperative University Thanlyin, have been offering training to women from rural communities to ensure they can develop a regular income and have established a sewing-machine room for the women to develop skills through a variety of training sessions from popular designers in Yangon.

The Units also act as incubators, nurturing new ideas and nascent companies that will have a social impact. At the National University of Management in Cambodia, one of these companies, Demine Robotics, offers unique expertise in clearing landmines. Its founder, Richard, recalls his childhood spent avoiding the mines and seeing the maimed victims begging on the streets. Cambodia is one of the most heavily land-mined countries in the world – with an estimated 4 to 6 million land mines still buried somewhere in the country, posing a challenge to farmers trying to cultivate otherwise fertile land. Using the Unit’s space and equipment and working with the students, the company has become recognised internationally for its expertise in applying robotics to landmine clearance.

Our event in October in Kuala Lumpur – SI LIVE ASIA – explored the role of universities in society, looking at how we rethink research and practice, learning and systems over two days. The event included keynote speeches, a talk-show style panel discussion and interactive deep-dive sessions. Topics covered included everything from the role of research and universities in tackling the SDGs, to building knowledge and narratives between social innovation and STEM and human centred design.

What’s coming up this year?

SEASIN is organising mentoring trips for our students from Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia and Malaysia to come to Europe and exchange best practices with our students here. Many of the students selected will have gone through the Impact Connect workshops run last year by the Social Innovation Exchange, University of Aveiro and Mission & Co, but are also attending follow-up organised by their institution’s SISU. Thammasat University, for example has been running a series of #SEASINCompetition Workshops. The first of these was led by Dr Serdar S. Durmusoglu who brainstormed business model canvas with students, highlighting the particular characteristics of a social enterprise model. Other workshops will focus on Service Design and the other on Components of Brand Design.

The Royal University of Phnom Penh and the University of Aveiro have been developing a Doctoral Programme which will be published in the summer. Partners from SEASIN have also been working together on the development of a joint doctorate programme under the European Commission’s Marie Sklodowska Curie Action. The Innovative Training Programme was developed with partners from Ashoka Thailand and Thammasat University as well as European partners from Glasgow and Aveiro and the Social Innovation Exchange. The International Network for Social Innovation Training and Education (INSITE) aims to equip a new generation of researchers with the appropriate tools, skills and knowledge to deliver an alternative, more collaborative approach to tackling societal challenges.

One of the fundamental aspects of SEASIN is the involvement of our stakeholders, and we would like to offer our thanks to them for their commitment to the project. Organised by the Universiti Teknologi Mara, Malaysia, we have a Memoranda of Understanding with a stakeholder network in each of the partner countries. In addition, the University of Alicante and Yangon University of Economics are overseeing the activities of the Advisory and Evaluation committees which will be assessing the work of each of the SISUs at a local level and the success of the project overall. Ten of the projects emerging from our SISU activities are also being monitored as case studies by Sunway University and Ashoka Thailand in order to gauge how social innovators can be supported by universities more effectively.

Other highlights to look out for this year: Kasetsart University, Thailand will oversee the publication of the SEASIN book which will feature a selection of articles and tools reflecting on the results of the project as well as reports from the SISUs and their projects, the role of our non-HEI partners and contributions from other stakeholders from the region. In the coming weeks, we will also be announcing our call for presentations for our second Southeast Asian Social Innovation Network conference to be held in Bangkok; supported by the partners from Mith Samlanh / Friends International, Social Innovation Exchange, Kasetsart University, Thammasat University and Cooperative University Thanylin.

We will be looking for a good mix of academics and practitioners to really delve into the question of how we can work together to effect change within our different regions. Watch this space for dates!

 

TCU SISU’s Research Paper Reading on Social Entrepreneur and Social Entrepreneurship

TCU SISU’s Research Paper Reading on Social Entrepreneur and Social Entrepreneurship

On 30-1-2019, TCU SISU Team conducted the Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and social entrepreneurship” as part of its activities. The main purpose of the event is to share social entrepreneurship research knowledge and ideas to the TCU SISU users (especially final year students who have to make a research). On the opening of the session, Rector Prof. Dr. Yi Yi Win delivered the welcoming speech to the participants. Then, the agenda was started by sharing the research findings of four master students. The following researches are released on the session:
(1) “Social Entrepreneurship and community Development: A Case Study of Recycle Myanmar in Pyay Township” by Ms. Poe Ei Soe

(2) “Effectiveness of Community-Based Tourism, Thalaepyar Village, Kalaw Township” by Ms. Zin Mar Thein

(3) “Analysis on the Motivation, Success Factors and Challenges of Social Entrepreneurs in Yangon City” by Mr. Zin Min Htwe

(4) “Social Entrepreneurial Intentions of Young Entrepreneurs in Yangon Region” by Ms. Thel Hsu Hlaing

At the end of presenting the research papers, the participants and SISU users asked questions and made suggestions on the issues that they are interested. Therefore, the event was the opportunity for the participants to exchange their ideas and views on the research topics presented in this session.
Finally, the session was official closed at 4:00 p.m. and the rector and participants took a group photo together with the researchers.

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Opening speech by Rector (30-1-2019)

Social Entrepreneurship and community Development: A Case Study of Recycle Myanmar in Pyay Township, Bago Region presented by Ms. Poe Ei Soe (30-1-2019)

Chair Person Professor Daw Khin Aye Mar, Department of Co-operative Studies (30-1-2019)

Effectiveness of Community – Based Tourism Thalaepyar Village, Kalaw Township presented by Ms. Zin Mar Thein (30-1-2019)

Chair Person Associate Professor Daw May Lin Aung, Department of Co-operative Studies (30-1-2019)

Analyzing on the Motivation, Success Factors and Challenges of Social Entrepreneurs in Yangon City presented by Mr. Zin Min Htwe (30-1-2019)

Chair Person Rector Prof. Dr. Yi Yi Win, Co-operative University, Thanlyin (30-1-2019)

Social Entrepreneurial Intentions of Young Entrepreneurs in Yangon Region presented by Ms. Thel Hsu Hlaing (30-1-2019)

Chair Person Professor Daw Khin Aye Mar, Department of Co-operative Studies (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Questions & Answers (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Questions & Answers (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Questions & Answers (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Questions & Answers (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Questions & Answers (30-1-2019)

Research Paper Reading on “Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurship”
Group Photo (30-1-2019)

The city as collective intelligence: Geoff Mulgan

The city as collective intelligence: Geoff Mulgan

As cities grow in size and significance, they can become sites of complex social problems – but also hubs for exploring possible solutions. While every city faces distinct problems, they all share a need for innovative approaches to tackle today’s challenges.

This essay is one in a series on future trends for innovative cities, written by the leading thinkers of the Mayor of Seoul’s Social Innovation Global Advisory Committee. This essay was written by Geoff Mulgan, CEO of Nesta in the UK and first published on the SIX website

We all roughly know how our brains work. But what would a city look like that could truly think and act?  What if it could be fully aware of all of its citizens experiences; able to remember and create; and then to act and learn?

This might once have been a fantasy. But it is coming closer. Cities can see in new ways – with citizen generated data on everything from the prevalence of floods to the quality of food in restaurants. Cities can create in new ways, through open challenges that mobilise public creativity. And they can decide in new ways, as cities like Madrid and Barcelona have done with online platforms that let citizens propose policies and then deliberate. Some of this is helped by technology. Our mobile phones collect data on a vast scale, and that’s now matched by sensors and the smart chips in our cars, buildings and trains. But the best examples combine machine intelligence with human intelligence: this is the promise of collective intelligence, and it has obvious relevance to a city like Seoul with millions of smart citizens, fantastic infrastructures and very capable institutions, from government to universities, NGOs to business.

Over the last few years, many experiments have shown how thousands of people can collaborate online analysing data or solving problems, and there’s been an explosion of new technologies to sense, analyse and predict. We can see some of the results in things like Wikipedia; the spread of citizen science in which millions of people help to spot new stars in the galaxy. There are new business models like Duolingo which mobilises volunteers to improve its service providing language teaching, and collective intelligence examples in health, where patients band together to design new technologies or share data. 

I’m interested in how we can use these new kinds of collective intelligence to solve problems like climate change or disease, and am convinced that every organisation and every city can work more successfully if it taps into a bigger mind – mobilising more brains and computers to help it.  

Doing that requires careful design, curation and orchestration. It’s not enough just to mobilise the crowd. Crowds are all too capable of being foolish, prejudiced and malign. Nor it is enough just to hope that brilliant ideas will emerge naturally. Thought requires work – to observe, analyse, create, remember and judge and to avoid the many pitfalls of delusion and deliberate misinformation.

But the emerging field of collective intelligence now offers many ways for cities to organise themselves in new ways.

Take air quality as an example. A city using collective intelligence methods will bring together many different kinds of data to understand what’s happening to air, and the often complex patterns of particulates.  Some of this will come from its own sensors, and some data can be generated by citizens. Artificial intelligence tools can then be trained to predict how it may change, for example because of a shift in the weather. The next stage then is to mobilise citizens and experts to investigate the options to improve air quality looking in detail at which roads have the worst levels or which buildings are emitting the most, and what changes would have most impact. And finally cities can open up the process of learning, seeing what’s working and what’s not.

In this way the city becomes more like a living brain – observing itself, and mobilising its own creativity to solve its problems. Labour markets are another example. We now have a chance to gather far more data than ever before on what jobs are available in a city and what skills they need; we can make predictions about which jobs are likely to grow and which will shrink; and we can use that data to create tools to help teenagers, job-seekers or adults make choices about their future skills and careers. Again, the city becomes more like a brain in this way, able to think and act more smartly.

So how is this different from artificial intelligence? Artificial intelligence is going through another boom, embedded in everyday things like mobile phones and achieving remarkable breakthroughs in medicine or games. But for most things that really matter we need human intelligence as well as AI, and an over reliance on algorithms alone can have horrible effects, whether in financial markets or in politics. 

Although there’s huge investment in artificial intelligence there’s been much less investment in collective intelligence. That is one reason why we have also seen little progress in how intelligently our most important systems work – democracy and politics, business and the economy. You can see this in the most everyday aspect of collective intelligence – how we organise meetings, which ignores almost everything that’s known about how to make meetings effective and how they can make the most of the collective intelligence of the people in the room. You can see it in many political systems too, where leaderships are a lot less smart than the societies they claim to lead. Martin Luther King spoke of ‘guided missiles but misguided men’ and we are surrounded by institutions packed with individual intelligence that nevertheless often display collective stupidity.

Not all of this is new. Many of the examples of successful collective intelligence are quite old – like the emergence of an international community of scientists in the 17th and 18th centuries, the Oxford English Dictionary which mobilised tens of thousands of volunteers in the 19th century, or NASA’s Apollo programme, which at its height employed over half a million people in more than 20,000 organisations.  But the tools at our disposal now are radically different – and more powerful than ever before. 

It’s easy to be depressed by the many examples of collective stupidity around us. But I believe we should be optimistic that we’ll figure out how to make the smart machines we’ve created serve us well and that we could be on the cusp of a dramatic enhancement of our shared intelligence. That’s a pretty exciting prospect with fundamental implications for almost everything governments do and it’s likely to be in cities like Seoul that the most important advances will come.

Geoff Mulgan is Chief Executive of Nesta, the UK’s National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts. He was previously head of the UK government Strategy Unit, director of the Young Foundation and the founder director of think-tank Demos. He is a senior visiting scholar at Harvard and his most recent book is ‘Big Mind: how collective intelligence can change our world’.