The lab experience for partner companies

You are looking for tailor-made solutions to a problem that your company is facing in developing and emerging countries and make use of the extensive network and connections of the German development cooperation?

As a lab of tomorrow partner, you take part in a multi-stakeholder innovation process, where a challenge, that is highly relevant for your business, is solved hands-on.

Already familiar with the process? Then

Propose a challenge

© GIZ / Fotograf: Paul Hahn
© GIZ / Fotograf: Paul Hahn

Are you looking to ...

  • strengthen your business activities in a developing or emerging country, while at the same time helping to achieve Agenda 2030?
  • quickly develop business ideas and new products and services for developing and emerging countries?
  • overcome barriers to achieve your corporate sustainability goals within your supply chain?
  • find the right partners for the expansion of your business activities?
  • cooperate successfully with authorities and ministries of your target countries, while observing compliance rules?

The lab of tomorrow enables you to ...

  • address a problem that your company faces in developing or emerging countries by working with your customers and relevant stakeholders to develop a business-driven solution that helps your company and contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • shape this business idea you co-create in the lab of tomorrow, in the way that is relevant to you. We formulate the sub-challenges, which outline the various aspects of the problem, together.
  • connect with new partners in the target country (companies, start-ups, civil society, government).
  • cooperate with innovative companies and experts in interdisciplinary teams.
  • cooperate with ministries, authorities and other organisations in the partner country.
  • apply a modern process of innovation based on design-thinking methods.

See how it worked with our partner Merck




How it works

1. Challenge

a. You submit a suggestion of a challenge (click here to see examples of previous challenges)
      The suggestion includes:

  • a brief description of the problem
  • explanations of different aspects of the problem which might potentially represent sub-challenges
  • stakeholders relevant to the problem, who might play a part in resolving it (initial ideas for suitable policy-level partners in ministries, authorities and other organisations)
  • the main reasons why you think the problem exists and hasn’t been resolved yet

b. We discuss your suggestion with you. Together, we consider:

  • Is your problem described in a way that it leaves room for creative solutions?
  • Is there a GIZ project working in the country that works on relevant aspects of your problem?
  • Are other German or European companies affected by this problem?
  • Is there potential for other German and European companies to contribute to the resolution of the problem?
  • Are the resources needed for a lab of tomorrow process available? (Clarification of cost sharing for the separate steps in the process)

c. If the assessment leads to a positive decision, we will work with you to elaborate specific sub-challenges as the basis for a collective lab of tomorrow.


2. Research

For a deeper understanding of the problem and its causes, we carry out user-centred research with your support, focusing on the relevant stakeholders that belong to the context of the problem.


3. Innovation workshop

  • In response to your wishes, we secure the participation of experts from both public and private sectors in a three-day innovation workshop.
  • We organise the innovation workshop, where interdisciplinary teams develop specific solutions to the sub-challenges.
  • You take part in the workshop and define precise criteria for the development of solutions.
  • You decide which of the solutions are carried forward to the test phase.


4. Test phase

You support the teams in the further development of the selected solutions, allotting time, human resources and funding for the activities in the target country (e.g. for feasibility studies, user tests, field research, etc.)


5. Pilot phase

If the business idea meets your demands during the test phase, you then support the design team in launching the business model in the target country, to obtain proof of its viability (‘proof of concept’).


6. Operate

The aim of the lab of tomorrow is to help companies develop investible shared value business models. At this stage the proof of concept exists, and companies are able to access the required resources to operate.



Would you like to become a lab of tomorrow partner? Register here and submit a challenge! 


Register / Login     Propose a challenge


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