Frugal Innovation, a revolution pioneered in ...

Entrepreneurs from emerging economies are pioneering a new model of “frugal innovation”. This approach aims at creating greater social value while minimizing the use of scarce financial and natural resources.

India, China, Brazil and some developing and emerging African countries are pioneering a new model of “frugal” innovation, one diametrically opposed to the costly, rigid and elitist research and development-driven approach prévalent in industrialized countries. Unlike yhe structured and resource-intensive Western innovation model which strives to do more with more, frugal innovation boasts the ability to do better with less – to create significantly greater social value while minimizing the use of scarce Financial and natural resources. The frugal innovation model – enabled by an ingenious jugaad mindset – pioneered in African, Latin American and developing Asian countries debunks “the North invents, the South copies”.


Thousands of ingenious entrepreneurs and companies in emerging economies, such as Kenya, India, Peru and the Philippines, use the frugal innovation approach to develop affordable and sustainable solutions with limited resources. These frugal innovators view harsh constraints, such as a lack of electricity or water less as restraining factors than creative opportunities to innovate and generate more value for local communities.

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