kiwanja.net focuses on activities which lower barriers to entry and put the power of technology in the hands of those who need it the most, whether that be through writing, speaking, consultancy or software development. A key focus is on empowering the end user, typically grassroots non-profits, activists, innovators and engaged citizens who are often overlooked in today’s high technology-driven development and social sectors.
In October 2015, CARE International announced the appointment of Ken Banks as their first ever Entrepreneur in Residence (EiR). Ken will spend time with CARE over the next year helping them make sense of the increasingly complex world of social innovation and technology-for-development. Further details on what Ken will be doing, and how EiR’s work, are available in an interview republished here.
In November 2013 we self-published our first social innovation book examining the concept of accidental, reluctant innovation. Following the success of that book a publishing deal was signed in early 2015 with Kogan Page, one of the leading publishers in Europe. That second book, “Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation: International Case Studies and Practice”, is due for release in March 2016.
kiwanja.net makes good use of a wide range of skills picked up during an early career in information technology to design and build cause-centric tools for both non-profits and engaged citizens. The first of these, FrontlineSMS, is today one of the most widely used messaging platforms in the non-profit sector. We are now working on a new disruptive mobile giving app, due for release by summer 2016.
From its roots in small-scale African development projects in the early 1990’s, kiwanja.net has always had a strong local community focus. Our Means of Exchange project looks at how emerging technologies can be used to democratise opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community and promote a return to local resource use, leading us to a better, fairer, more locally-connected world.
With decades experience in the technology and international development sectors and a track record in the development of innovative tools, kiwanja.net is ideally-placed to help mentor and guide future social innovators and supporters in their work. Thought leadership is now a large part of what we do, helping the sector make best use of the technologies and opportunities available to all of us.
In addition to running our own projects, kiwanja.net has a strong track record in providing consultancy and advisory services and over the years has worked with a number of international projects and organisations including UNEP, the GSM Association, Nike Foundation, PopTech, CARE and The Grameen Technology Centre.
Ken Banks is a writer, speaker, moderator, compere and panelist who features regularly on the international conference circuit. If you’re after a professional communicator for your office event, function or conference, or need an innovation-focused consultant, let’s talk.