DAI Experts to Present on Climate Resilience at Conference in Guatemala

June 11, 2018

DAI has developed a panel for the upcoming Cracking the Nut conference in Antigua, Guatemala, on June 12 and 13. DAI’s panel is about user-centered design for climate resilience and includes the following experts: DAI’s Rob Ryan-Silva and Jonathan Randall, MateoTech’s Norman Avila, and Anacafé’s Mario Choocoj.

Cracking the Nut is a two-day conference that highlights the broad range of technologies and approaches available to mitigate and adapt to changes in rural and agricultural development. The event brings together about 300 thought leaders from the private sector, financial world, donor organizations, and the development community to discuss the “tough nuts” related to promoting agriculture technology adoption and resilience.

Presenters on the DAI panel will discuss how their initiatives connect people to products with an in-depth look at how climate-resilient agriculture tools benefit from user-centered design. The presenters will highlight the unique measures they needed to follow to create user-centered tools, including custom features, innovations, and aesthetics.

The panelists will share lessons learned while developing tools designed to maximize uptake by target populations with the intention of becoming mainstreamed into relevant production and conservation decisions. Case studies include:

  • How the DAI Maker Lab developed digitally controlled devices that communicate with sensors and control agriculture applications in Indonesia.
  • How MeteoTech created a mobile application that generates automatic alerts about change in weather forecasts for agriculture decisions.
  • How the Guatemalan National Coffee Association, Anacafé, collaborated to make the Coffee Cloud tool, an application that connects coffee institutes and producers in the region with regional climate information and that allows them to provide data on the status of their plantations to make informed decisions in the management of crops.
  • How DAI developed the FarmCAAT Tool, which provides not just extractive analysis but tailored information products on climate effects for farmers and regional climate-smart agriculture practices. The presentation will show how its design is based on field inputs and testing.

These examples will show how even nonspecialists can design sophisticated digital applications and mechanical hardware based on user needs. Software and hardware can be built without needing access to major industrial infrastructure and produced in ways that are affordable for small target user populations. “These advances can radically shift how we apply digital applications and hardware to problems in developing countries,” said Randall, DAI’s climate change specialist.

Participants will have the chance to engage with the technologies and ask questions as they rotate around four user experience stations.

Follow the panel and the conference on Twitter at #CrkNut18.

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