Nodepage

Technology justice, wellbeing and scale

Practical Action's strategy 2012-17

We continue to live in a world where the gap between those who have access to the technologies they need for a decent quality of life and those who don’t is a yawning chasm.

1.3 billion people have no access to electricity, 1.3 billion no access to safe water, 2.6 billion have no sanitation and 1 billion people are undernourished. Huge numbers of individuals’ lives are being made poorer. We live in a world of technology injustice.

We know that improving people’s lives is not just about material goods. People’s material concerns relating to access to amenities and basic services, to establishing sustainable livelihoods must be met – but the way things are done is also vital. People need the opportunity for meaningful choice and the power to exercise control over their own lives, to live in dignity and have respectful relationships in their households and the wider world. Improving people’s material and relational wellbeing is fundamental to our work.

Practical Action believes in Technology Justice and our strategy sets out how we, together with people living in poverty, with partner organisations, with businesses and with governments, will help move our world towards Technology Justice.

Vision

Our vision is one of technology justice: a sustainable world free of poverty and injustice in which technology is used for the benefit of all.

Mission

Our mission is to contribute to poor people’s wellbeing, using technology to challenge poverty by:

  • building the capabilities of poor men and women,
  • improving their access to technical options and knowledge, and
  • working with them to influence social, economic and institutional systems for innovation and the use of technology

What we will do

Our strategy builds on our track record of success yet challenges us to do things differently – to reinforce our focus on technology, to improve poor people’s relational as well as material wellbeing, to become an even more effective knowledge broker and to increase our impact on national and global policy and practice. We will initiate a movement for Technology Justice.

We will work with others towards four universal goals:

  • Sustainable access to modern energy service for all by 2030
  • A transition to sustainable systems of agriculture and natural resource management that provide food security and livelihoods for the rural poor
  • Improved access to drinking water, sanitation and waste services for urban dwellers
  • Reduced risk of disasters for marginalised groups and communities

As a direct result of our work, the wellbeing of six million people will be improved.

There will be more than 25 cases of at least one million people who benefit from an improved ability to access technologies, services, natural resources and markets, or have risks mitigated as a result of Practical Action’s knowledge, partnership and influencing work.

We will achieve scale, we will deliver wellbeing and we will move towards Technology Justice.

To achieve this large scale change we will:

  • Reinforce our focus on technology
  • Identify the policy and practice goals we will achieve in the four universal goal areas
  • Mainstream across the goals our expertise in markets and climate change
  • Focus across Practical Action on a major global change priority, the first of these being Energy Access for all
  • Strengthen our role as a knowledge broker
  • Expand our programme work into West Africa through Practical Action Consulting and Practical Answers, open a new country office in Rwanda and establish a fundraising presence in the USA
  • Grow our total income by 50% to £47 million per annum by 2017
  • Build a movement for technology justice

To achieve our ambitions will demand ground-breaking programmes of work. Regions and countries will step forward to lead this work locally, and the UK will provide support while helping to lead on global issues. This is not business as usual, and will involve changes to our structure and to our culture.

We will need to think longer term, work differently and become more dynamic and collaborative  within Practical Action as well as engage more pro-actively with other organisations. We will also  recognise this strategy is a guide, providing direction to our organisation rather than a rigid plan.

Through this strategy we will help millions of people, we will strengthen our work, add value to the  work of others and in all that we do will improve wellbeing, because people matter.

Together, we in Practical Action will help over 30 million poor people achieve positive change in  their lives. We will affirm people’s right to choose and use the technologies that help them lead the kind of life they value, without compromising the ability of others and future generations to do the same.

We will change, and move – and know that we have moved our world towards Technology Justice.

We are proud to take 'practical action'.

Technology Justice, Wellbeing and Scale: Practical Action Strategy 2012-17

Practical Action believes in Technology Justice and our strategy sets out how we, together with people living in poverty, with partner organisations, with businesses and with governments, will help move our world towards Technology Justice.

Practical Action: our story (2 page version)

This is a story of 2 billion people living in poverty - and what we can do to help change their lives forever. This is the two-page version of Practical Action's "narrative" - who we are and the values that inform our work. A longer 20-page version is also available.

Practical Action: our story

This is a story of two billion people living in poverty - and what we can do to help change their lives forever. This is the 20 page version of Practical Action's "narrative" - who we are and the values that inform our work.

Our programme work

To deliver our strategic goals, the majority of our projects focus on these key programme areas:

Energy

Practical Action provides practical power - renewable, locally-sourced sustainable energy solutions which lift people out of poverty.

Read more

Water and sanitation

Lack of access to adequate water supplies and sanitation means people’s lives are at risk. Practical Action shows how water resources can be managed even in the face of drought and other extreme weather conditions.

Read more

Food and agriculture

Practical Action's work with small scale farmers and pastoralists aims to help them increase their food production capacity.

Read more

Disaster risk reduction

If people are sufficiently prepared, and have the capacity to cope and recover quickly, droughts, floods and even earthquakes need not be a disaster.

Read more

History

Until 2012, Practical Action's project work was organised under four strategic programmes: Reducing vulnerability, Markets and livelihoods, Access to infrastructure services and Responding to new technologies. More about our historical programme work

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