Higher Education Solutions Network (HESN)

Overview

USAID has created a constellation of seven Development Labs that harness the intellectual power of great American and international academic institutions and that catalyze the development and application of new science, technology, and engineering approaches and tools to solve some of the world’s most challenging development problems. These Labs will help USAID and the development community to discover more innovative, results-driven, efficient, cost effective and accessible solutions to global development challenges in areas such as global health, food security and chronic conflict. The HESN will create a novel constellation of seven Development Labs that will enable USAID to:

  • Improve its understanding of development problems and solutions through better data and analytics
  • Test, evaluate, and catalyze technologies for development
  • Design, create, and incubate revolutionary approaches in addressing development problems including the incubation of new low-cost technologies and innovations
  • Promote entrepreneurship to sustain and scale these tools and approaches; and harness the enthusiasm and interest of students for development.

Outcomes

These Development Labs will enhance the Agency’s ability to create revolutionary approaches in addressing development problems; test and catalyze new tools within science, technology, and engineering; and, promote entrepreneurship to sustain and scale these tools and approaches. USAID’s investments in pioneering scientific, technological, and innovative approaches to development challenges can produce new solutions, attract new solvers to the Agency, including from the developing world, and help countries grow past aid.

Inaugural USAID Development Labs

  • University of California, Berkeley
  • Duke University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • The College of William and Mary
  • Texas A&M University
  • Makerere University (Uganda)
  • Michigan State University

Last updated: September 05, 2013

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