Impact Solutions Are Not Necessarily Frugal Solutions But The Opposite Is True

I am seeing lot of ‪#‎Impact‬ examples where ‪#‎affordability‬ to end user is missing. I made this note for myself:

“What is ‪#‎Frugal‬ can be ‪#‎Impactful‬ but an #Impact solution isn’t necessarily a #Frugal Solution.”

My definition of Frugal = Quality, Accessible, Sustainable & Affordable.

The comment I have heard from a Finnish colleague is “This might not be a top priority for a typical Finnish engineer or technological solution, i.e. being tech-centric as opposed to user-centric. I suppose the point-of-view depends what target market a product or service is being designed for. Personally I understand an impactful product or service to be either affordable for the end user or otherwise accessible (paid for my someone else), because what impact is there if the product or service does not reach its intended users?”

But isn’t it so that because even if we think of a developed country market..eg: Finland:

  • Average pension is less than 2000 Euros, Pensioners (1.525 million) make up almost 28% of the population;
  • Currently 341000 people are unemployed (The Ministry of Employment and the Economy has forecasted that by 2017 the long-term unemployed will rise to nearly 40 % of all unemployed …A bigger issue is if increasing number of unemployed have stopped looking for work);
  • The recent Employer-employee contracts show that wage growth will be more or less stagnant;
  • Government funding cuts to organisations already shows in lesser resources for education, research, healthcare, social security, pensions etc.. Also means government can’t or wont subsidise much;
  • Also I read that a growing number of Finns financial difficulty is now at record levels. 372,000 people had problems paying the bills in April 2016 (Turun Sanomat May 30, 2016).

    So with these in mind how can we push the conversation in this country that actually “Frugal” solutions are needed here as well, not just in some distant faraway Africa or Asia.

    Author: Venkata Gandikota

    Venkata has more than 13 years of technical engineering, research, ideation, strategy and business modeling experience. Based on his experience with the Indian market and realizing also the need for affordable & sustainable solutions for Finland and other European markets, he started The Nordic Frugal Innovation Society in late 2013 with 2 colleagues. By organizing ideation workshops and 2 major conferences involving Cities, Universities, and businesses he started to mainstream the concept in Finland and the Nordics. Gandikota has also written several articles focusing on frugal innovations in the Finnish media. He has also been helping Finnish businesses in India as CEO of Indianeer Consulting and gives guest lectures at JAMK University of Applied Sciences in Jyväskylä. He has a Bachelors in Chemical Engineering from India and a Masters in Environmental Engineering from USA.