SDG lab at the Triple Helix International conference & the SA innovation summit

Catalysts for change

The lab, represented by CORDIO’s Randall Mabwa, took part in the XVII Triple Helix International conference and thereafter at the SA Innovation summit in Cape Town, South Africa, from the 9th to 11th September. The Triple Helix concept, a catalyst for change, is a set of interactions between industry, government and academia to foster innovation.  Our SDG lab participated under the banner of social innovation, aiming to improve community livelihoods through novel solutions.

In line with our quest to implement SDG goals 11 and 14, we explored the opportunities where the lab can act as a catalyst for change, leading to the implementation of these community-led solutions. With facilitation from the National Research Fund (NRF) and a newly created link with the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) of South Africa, all participating labs from Kenya, South Africa, Madagascar, Zambia, Uganda and Tanzania were able to brainstorm on a way forward, developing synergies to upscale and replicate their efforts at localised and expanded scales.


The highlights for us were winning the conference ‘Da Vinci word search puzzle’, and having our lab selected by the Triple Helix board to develop a concept with the aim of upscaling and replicating concept the concept and testing models in the near future! We look forward to expanding the model and also position

ing ourselves as a hub for social innovation and incubation for

ideas linked to environmental protection from solid waste, valuation of waste and the development of sustainable and entrepreneurial solutions to improve community livelihoods and the protection of biodiversity.

Social innovation – kits for change

We presented one of our main products (still in draft form) – a children’s educational and play kit. We aim to use the kit for teaching and instilling best practices in communities through children; a campaign for future change nested under SDG 4.

What next?

~ Develop upscaling concepts and test these through our community-led framework founded on the SDGs 14 and 11, and also linked to other supportive goals and targets (17, 16, and 4),

~ fundraise for the development of a scalability concept that can be implemented via partnerships in Africa, and

~ develop and contribute to learning networks targeting localised change efforts that can be upscaled and replicated.

CORDIO will strive to continue to be an active player in championing for the development of solutions to mitigate solid waste pollution that is currently affecting multiple ecosystems in Kenya and Africa at large.