Beyond philanthropy, why should global companies invest in social impact projects in developing countries? From a design thinking standpoint, the answer is quite compelling: If we don’t deeply understand the communities that we serve, we can’t design for impact. But by being embedded, we can get insights to ideas that may lead to products or services that that market may need, says Ideo CEO Tim Brown.
Among the benefits of this approach: Designers “on the ground” in a developing country can create products and services that are highly tailored to local markets. Also, some of the deep insights the firm gains from the developing market may transfer to helping pioneer new business models and approaches in its core markets.
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