Grameen Intel CEO believes in leading with education, not technology
By Nisma Elias on June 14, 2013
Although Grameen Intel uses technology to solve social problems, CEO Kazi Huque says education about how to use that technology is key in addressing the world’s toughest challenges.
“I believe in leading with education; technology is just an enabler. We have the information and technology. The missing link is education, and identifying local people on the ground to [effectively] use the technology.
Our software eAgro has been the most successful in analyzing farmers’ soil and recommending the right amount of fertilizer, but people have to be willing to listen and adapt. What’s important at the end of the day, and for the next generation, is education.”
Huque was a judge at the Tech4Change event June 7th-9th, held at Mercy Corps and co-sponsored by Startup Weekend, which brought together entrepreneurs to create viable social enterprises that can be scaled to address global needs. Huque’s emphasis on the role of education coupled with collaborative technology proved itself through the dozens of creative ideas to devise tools for the greater good. One of the ideas was AquaStart, a home aquaponics kit designed to grow fresh vegetables and fish at home; akin to the research already underway in Bangladesh to develop a low-cost aquaponics system to provide chemical-free fish and produce for people living in adverse conditions such as flood-prone regions. However, in order to effectively make use of and market this system on a commercial level, potential users need to understand how such sustainable farming works and why. AquaStart was voted the Crowd Favorite at the weekend competition.
Similar to Tech4Change, Grameen Intel has been instrumental in harnessing the power of education to design digital solutions to mitigate poverty through a number of initiatives. Code for Good is a programming contest encouraging computer scientists in college to develop software prototypes to solve real world issues.