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Enhancing Cross Cultural Communication

How can we encourage innovation narratives to reach different regions?


Design, Entrepreneurship, Inclusion, Social Impact, Technology

Vinay Solipuram

Shriya Tiwari


Our research has shown us that the UNHCR has struggled to implement innovative solutions to problems across the world due to cross cultural differences.

We were also curious to explore what innovation meant across the world and understood that it meant different things to different people in varying regions which posed a large
challenge for the agency. This lead us into our intervention - Creating a cultural toolkit that aids cross - cultural communication. The toolkit will help in creating strategies that bind innovation and culture. Cultural insights will help diffuse innovation strategies better.


The prompt was very broad and initially we struggled with trying to find a solution, and had to go through a very rigorous iterative process to come to a solution that worked for both the agency and catered to the prompt. However post conversations with the UNHCR team members and conducting our own research, we were able to hone in on an area of focus. We were passionate about exploring the cultural aspect of innovation, as both of us had bi-cultural experiences growing up and understood innovation differently. A walkthrough of the website helped us identify the lack of engagement and interactivity, our research showed us that people wanted to interact and be able to have platforms to discuss issues and have conversations. From our Interviews we uncovered the gaps of communication experienced amongst the innovation team in getting their developments across to people in various countries.


The conclusion we reached revolved around enhancing cross cultural communication through a cultural toolkit, over time the focus of our toolkit shifted because of the feedback gathered by potential users and UNHCR members. The interactive toolkit differs from region to region and has features such as regional information, demographic information, and information about innovation services, etc. The toolkit we created allows a variety of change makers to provide their insights into the current situation. In addition, people are allowed to create their own posts, comment on others, and react to current postings online. People are also able to share their views and thoughts on various social media channels. A collaborative approach helps close the feedback loop, and fosters a culture of inclusion. It acts as a participatory project that focuses on gathering data/trends.

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