D-Lab UGC Fieldwork Grant Awards!

Fall 2016 UGC D-Lab Fieldwork Grant winners!
Fall 2016 UGC D-Lab Fieldwork Grant winners!

Congratulations to the three students who have been awarded Fall 2016 UGC D-Lab Fieldwork Grants!

Check back soon for the winners of the UGC Peer Impact Prizes, which will provide additional funding to these three. 

Creating a Valuation Method to Provide Leverage for an Informal Market
Durban, South Africa

Project Goal

I am part of a partnership between MIT CREATE and Asiye eTalfuni (AeT), a nonprofit organization that aims to support vendors working in public space in Durban, South Africa. I aim to develop a mechanism to value Warwick Market and integrate it into the city’s planning priorities. The long term goal is to share this tool with other practitioners through the WIEGO network.

How funding will support Emma's D-Lab project

Warwick Market is a natural market existing in Durban for over 100 years with an estimated 6,000 to 9,000 vendors that are mostly Zulu. About 30 percent of South Africa’s employment is informal and Durban alone has an estimated 50,000 street vendors. Warwick has an important historical legacy as a space for consumers to find affordable goods and services and for vendors to earn income. UGC funding will support my work on this project over IAP. During IAP, I will be working with AeT to develop a multidimensional valuation metric tool so vendors can demonstrate the value of Warwick. This tool will highlight the needs of the space and legitimize the value of the market. This is the first stage of an ongoing collaboration between CREATE and AeT. I am working with Teresa De Figueiredo '17 and Alaa Raafat (Harvard Student) under the supervision of D-Lab instructor Kate Mytty.

Lauren TenCate ’18
Precious Plastic - Waste to Wealth
Arusha, Tanzania

Project Goal

Over the course of this project, I will implement plastic melting and forming technologies developed by Engineers Without Borders over the course of the past year. Additionally, I will work with community partners to find uses for objects formed from melted plastic bags and bottles.

How funding will support her D-Lab/Engineers Without Borders project

UGC funding will provide the necessary support to travel to Tanzania to implement the plastic melting project she has been involved with for the past year, and which was initiated by D-Lab students in Tanzania in January 2016. Additionally, these funds will be used to purchase equipment to build a plastic melting setup that can be used by the community partner for the foreseeable future. I am hopeful that this project will be able to turn plastic repurposing and manufacturing into a viable industry in Arusha and in the country of Tanzania.

Locally Manufacturable, Inexpensive Motorcycle Ambulance Trailers in Rural Tanzania
Mbeya, Tanzania

Project Goal

In Tanzania and much of rural Africa, villages are not close to hospital centers. If an injury occurs, it is difficult, if not impossible, to get help. The goal of this project is to create a means of transporting sick and injured people over unimproved roads via a motorcycle without making permanent modifications.

How funding will support this D-Lab project

UGC funding will allow me to take this project from a prototype that she is passionate about to a product that has the potential to impact hundreds of lives. This grant will fund a trip to Tanzania over IAP, where I will work with users, local manufacturers, and the project sponsor to make this a reality. This project has the potential to significantly reduce fatalities, by utilizing resources that already exist. By gathering user input and conducting field testing in the location where the prototype will be used, I can ensure this patient transport system will make as large of an impact as possible. I am working with a team that also includes Sade Nabahe '17, Jimmie Harris '17, and Mitch Turley '18.