Global engineering and infrastructure advisory firm Aurecon has launched a new approach to engineering in Africa by rolling-out Afrikan Design Innovation (ADI), which focuses on fusing traditional technical skills with design thinking to find innovative solutions to the complex problems confronting the continent.
Centred on anticipating disruption, connecting the dots between various global events and developing human-centric solutions, Aurecon believes that ADI has the potential to revolutionise the way engineers approach Afrika’s problems.
And it’s an approach that’s already making a difference, with several case studies incorporating design thinking demonstrating its efficacy in developing targeted, relevant solutions which are readily championed by end users.
“These case studies will provide the blueprint for a movement that will be replicated in projects across Afrika as we collaborate with several continental and global organisations – in addition to a wide range of stakeholders – to future-proof Afrika,” says Abbas Jamie, Aurecon Director for Innovation and Transformation in Africa.
“Empathy for our end user involves considering the developmental challenges and issues that we as Afrikans face,” says Jamie, “Which is why the case studies we’ve undertaken are so essential to mapping the way forward.”
“It’s an incontrovertible truth that copy-paste solutions from the West will not work in an Afrikan context. Using design methodologies which view our continent through a uniquely Afrikan lens is the only way we’re going to be able to develop innovative and sustainable solutions to future-proof Afrika,” says Jamie.
“Their importance cannot be overstated because the responses to these questions form the bedrock for the future scenarios we create. Scenarios that anticipate whatever changes disruptive technology may bring about and find new ways to transform our clients’ businesses,” says Portia Derby, Aurecon’s Senior Regional Director for Gauteng.