A key goal of the Human Development Innovation Fund (HDIF) programme is to act as a catalyst for change by increasing knowledge and understanding about the complex practice of social innovation in Tanzania that can be used by others. This report aims to do just that and is a curation of our collective understanding of how to improve the use, scale, and adoption of innovation in Tanzania to improve access to basic services and how best to strengthen the innovation ecosystem as a whole.
Given the many challenges and opportunities associated with innovation and the unique focus areas of different organisations, this report is intended to be viewed as a set of opinions that can be used as a guiding resource for innovation funders, policymakers and practitioners. HDIF is a proud champion of some of the most inspiring and creative Tanzanian innovators in the country – individuals and organisations who are committing time, energy, and resources to help address some of the country’s toughest development challenges. Over the past five years, we have had the great fortune of supporting them to bring their ideas to fruition and test out new ways of doing things.
Innovation is risky, and whilst there have been some big wins and success stories, there are times where things have not worked out as envisaged – but we have learned a lot in the process. HDIF intends share what is has learned for others to capitalise on, to help ensure that mistakes are not replicated, that limited resources are used effectively, and to take best practice approaches to scale. The report is divided into three chapters that share a series of insights and put forward recommendations based on HDIF’s experiences. In particular, the report identifies three key lessons that have helped to shape the programme (see Summary of Recommendations on page 6). Fostering innovation in a rapidly evolving ecosystem such as Tanzania is complex and requires being open to continuously learning and adapting to fluctuations and changes.