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Appropriate and Emerging technologies by youth

iFriday, Aug 28th, 2015 comments by Busisiwe Keke

Appropriate and Emerging technologies by youth

Appropriate technologies has been used to cover a wide range of both technologies and lifestyles including sustainable living, alternative fuels, and ethical technology transfers.

A technology is considered appropriate if it solves a social problem without many adverse negative effects. Every new technology has consequences in the society some foreseen, others unforeseen

Evaluation of appropriateness

Evaluation of appropriateness could be technical, cultural or economic

  • Technically appropriate considers technical knowledge and background of the people who will be using the technology
  • Cultural appropriateness should analyze the technology in its relationship to the critical social systems in the society including family systems, religious beliefs, division of labor in the society and levels of education and training
  • Economic appropriateness refer to technology effects on income levels and income distribution in a society  and income disparity between different socio-economic groups

Examples of appropriate technology

  •   Renewable energy
  •   Smart growth
  •   Green building
  •   Sustainable agriculture among others


Emerging technologies are fields of technology that broach new technology in some significant way,with new technology development


Examples of emerging technology

  •   Educational technology
  •   Information technology
  •   Nanotechnology
  •   biotechnology







UK engineering student John Leary knows his “gilligans”island and the world may be better off it. When challenged to design a product from only waste materials, he created a bicycle powered water pump for irrigation and water distribution in Guatemala.NGO Maya Pedal learned of the product and assisted in distribution, since its goal is to improve the daily lives of the locals without finicky and expensive fossil fuel machines. The product works by plugging a normal bikes rear wheel to friction drive, connected to an electrical pump. The bike tyre contacts with the former armature of the motor and the wheels are moved by raw muscle power. The machine can pump 40 liters of well water per minute and locals love the design because it’s portable when one is done pumping just flip the frame upside down and the pump sits atop the back wheel so you could ride off to the next well.




This project was a big help to the Guatemala community and an NGO took it and supported the project. Maya pedal is a Guatemalan NGO in an Andres Itzapa. They deal with pedal powered machines.

Pedal power can be harnessed for countless applications which would otherwise require electricity which may not be available or hand power. Pedal powered machines can be built using local materials and can be easily adapted to suit local people. They are free from the user rising energy costs, can be used anywhere and are easy to maintain. They also provide no pollution and provide healthy exercise. The NGO aims to be a center of pedal power research and development and an information resource for promoting appropriate technology and sustainable.

Thus it can be clearly seen how a project that a youth came up with has enabled the NGO to make a further achievement in its mission and how the local society were really helped by this.




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