Innovation is a crucial part of development, ensuring that we are working better, faster and smarter to build stronger health, nutrition and education systems that deliver better outcomes for all. By both creating new approaches and building on or adapting what has come before, development innovations have the potential to help address pressing system-level challenges.
However, far too many promising innovations fail to successfully scale their impact, due to a lack of knowledge and evidence on how to manage this long and difficult process. Opportunities to learn, adapt and improve by drawing on the collective experience of others are still scarce, as is access to appropriate resources such as government and donor funding mechanisms linked to valuable know-how and expertise. This reality inhibits the acceleration of promising solutions and their introduction and integration into systems.
We view the concept of innovation as a means to an end. Innovations can be new services, products, processes and interventions that have the potential to positively impact systems. The focus of our work is on creating positive impact — real benefits for the people and communities that innovations serve.
We translate local insights into improved global knowledge. Scaling up individual innovative organizations is necessary but not sufficient. Although we work with individual programs to help them improve, scale and replicate, we also generate valuable lessons and global knowledge that we share globally to inspire others and unlock opportunities across the world.
We support the broader ecosystem to impact systems change. We work with change agents at all levels (local and global) to impact policy and practice and to create more inclusive national systems that integrate innovations to deliver better results. We make it a priority to work with government policymakers to ensure that innovations address their pressing priorities.
We create and support global communities of innovators, funders and policymakers for continuous and iterative learning, knowledge generation, exchange and collaboration.
Since its inception, Results for Development has worked with funders, policymakers and the innovators themselves to identify promising models that work, and to provide them with the support they need to scale their impact. Results for Development has:
- Designed or supported the evolution of several successful global knowledge and networking communities that are promoting the spread of promising innovations around the world, including The Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI), the Center for Education Innovations (CEI) and The Global Innovation Exchange (GIE).
- Fostered collaborative and adaptive learning opportunities that help innovators improve, scale and replicate, while generating valuable user-driven knowledge disseminated globally. For example, CHMI’s Learning and Adaptation initiatives facilitate structured learning partnerships between organizations that are profiled on CHMI.
- Worked with innovators to co-create solutions to shared challenges and develop practical knowledge and tools that inform innovations’ improvement, scale up and adaptation to new contexts, including The Primary Care Innovator’s Handbook, the Early Learning Toolkit, Journeys to Scale and Taking Learning Beyond the Hotel Conference Room: How Local WASH Organizations Implement New Ideas.
- Provided strategic support to global development funders to build increased understanding of the role of innovation within international development through The International Development Innovation Alliance (IDIA). Established in 2015, the Alliance brings together the bilateral and multilateral agencies, innovation platforms and private foundations, with a shared mission to actively promote and advance innovation as a means to help achieve sustainable development.