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Last month the Huffington Post featured a substantial article, written jointly by myself and Thomas Bjelkeman-Pettersson. It was published in its ImpactX section – “where people, technology, and social impact converge”. You can read the full piece here – 10 Big Lessons We Learned In the Business of Intelligent International Development.

It provided a really good opportunity to set out our approach to building partnerships and developing open source software and services. And to describe the journey Akvo has taken since late 2006. For some time we’ve been talking internally about how we’re helping the “aid” world move to a different phase – something closer to the idea of “intelligent development”. In this new era, partnerships and networks become at once simpler and more sophisticated and investments and interventions are made in really intelligent ways. Ways that are based on good quality data and interconnected networks of outstanding individuals who all have a voice and a say. This piece allowed us to examine some of the ways we’re moving towards that reality.

We had some great feedback too from people around the world. I was especially pleased to read this blog by Adam Jagich, co-founder of CommonSites, one of our partners that is doing pioneering work in the field of cultural heritage and conservation.

I’m very grateful to Dan Klinglesmith and Cisco Inc’s Eric Chu for approaching us with the opportunity.

Mark Charmer is communications director at Akvo.