The Energy Efficient Clay Brick (EECB) project hosted a one and a half day Innovation Platform Workshop in Hatfield, Pretoria, bringing a cross section of stakeholders from across the clay brick sector together.
Feedback from those attending has been extremely positive and a good indicator for the EECB project team as to the relevance of the project to the sector.
The purpose of the platform is to directly link stakeholders from each of the production, demand and enabling environment sides of the clay brick sector market system to engage on pertinent issues for the sector while allowing them to interact and engage directly, sharing ideas and the developing strategies.
The workshop was designed and facilitated by Ingenious Peoples Knowledge, allowing the 35 stakeholders attending the workshop to enjoy an intensive, but fun program enabling maximum participation. The stakeholders attending the workshop have been introduced to the planned leaning journey which will take them in various stages through the clay brick market system, with the objective of achieving an Energy Efficient Clay Brick Sector.
This initial workshop provides inputs to finalize and jointly agree about this journey to better understand the different angles and perspectives of the clay brick sector. It will also be utilised to the benefit of the EECB project team in planning project interventions and linking stakeholders and participants directly where they become active participants to the project. This ensures the long term sustainability of the project.
Stakeholders will work in two groups, each having a relevant sector representation:
- The inner and smaller group (G12) will be a selection of the most advocating stakeholder members, engaging in all the processes on behalf of the overall sector.
- The larger group (G40) will be representative of the broader participation of people.
The idea is that during the small group workshops, participants will be interacting with each other, ideas will be discussed and each group will be able to understand in depth the different perspectives of the other groups. These discussions and findings will then be reported to the larger group and which will then be discussed, finalised and agreed upon.
A few activities have been planned for the next few months for the stakeholders in order to learn directly from identified users more about the decision making processes on the specifying and use of clay bricks. The next planned activity will be to provide a better understanding of the end user perspective of who plays an important role in the choice of the material utilized for the construction of walls.
The Innovation Platform milestones
Milestone 2: Meeting of System-representative Group (G40) and Core Group (G12)
- The system creates a mandate for itself;
- G12 is constituted as a core group that drives the process with more permanence and intensity;
- G40 creates a mandate for G12 as “scouts” for the whole process and what it should deliver, so that it is valuable & owned by the larger system.
Milestone 3: Understanding the end-user perspective
- Identify who the ultimate consumers of clay bricks are, to support sector transformation towards energy efficiency;
- Understand the situation, motivation, interest and functional logic of the end-users of bricks;
- G12 field workshop (“site visit”) in the end-user environment followed by a G40 event to reflect, communicate and align in the bigger group.
Milestone 4: Understanding the technical, scientific, financial & regulatory side
- Processing the insights of various relevant studies (life-cycle assessment, regulatory impact assessment, socio-economic study, existing financial products, etc.);
- Make study results tangible to incorporate the lessons they contain and deduct implications (“seeing is believing”);
- G12 site visits in different locations to witness different parts of the studies followed by a G12/G40 workshop.
Milestone 5: Prototyping potential innovations
G40 prototyping workshop to develop new ideas and provide improved solutions, concepts, frameworks, policies, strategies, products, etc. to the challenges in each of the different areas:
- Financial products (beyond the existing portfolio);
- Energy-efficiency practices;
- Marketing strategies;
- Policy recommendations, etc.