Inclusive Innovation in the Private Sector: The Case of East African Tech Start-Ups

Date
2017-01-04
Authors
Koskinen, Kari
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Abstract
Inclusive innovation argues for the inclusion of societally marginalised groups into the innovation process in order for them to better benefit from the innovations. In the literature on the topic, the main actors behind these innovations are multinational enterprises or entities from the public or third sector. However, in a developing country context, inclusive innovation might be equally relevant for small private sector entities, as they often target the same users, for example the non-profit sector. \ \ This paper studies the role of inclusive innovation in technology start-ups in East Africa and argues that, despite their profit seeking purpose, contextual factors force many of these start-ups to automatically adopt methods advocated by inclusive innovation. This has important implications to evaluating the role of the private sector as a provider of services and products that can be seen as having a positive impact on the lives of these groups.
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Inclusive innovation, East Africa, entrepreneurship, application development, context
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