Build Change Nepal

 

Build Change, Nepal: Transforming the Retrofitting Experience

 

In April, 2015 a 7.8 earthquake in Nepal impacted 600,000 homes, 400,000 of which are now unsafe to live in and need immediate retrofitting. Build Change works in disaster effected areas and was on the ground to help with recovery efforts.

 
 

 

OPPORTUNITY

 

OUTCOME

Build Change needed an application to accelerate the 80 hour assessment and drawing approval process required before families begin rebuilding their house.

 

The team created a tablet based application that allowed users to visualize structural damage, input key data, and automate the drawing and planning process for homes in need of retrofitting.

 
 

 

Research Strategy

 

Be responsive to the local context and people.

Extend the long term capacities of Build Change.

Engage proactively with the Nepali government.

 
 

Two years later conditions were still quite challenging

 

 

Discover

Secondary research

Remote stakeholder interviews

Review available data

In-person user interviews

Contextual inquiry

Co-creation workshops

Key Insight

The rebuilding process often takes the entire family from agricultural work, and thus family’s main source of income. This had a direct impact on the rebuilding timeline.

 
 
 
 

Taking measurements of a house by hand is a two person job

 

Our team visited a regional planning office to get to know their process.

 

Generating solutions

 
 

The measuring process was taking 80 hours of labor for local people

 

Staff used a whiteboard and printouts of spreadsheets to track the planning process.

 
 
 

It took our team of eight technical experts 32 hours to measure a house

 

Documents related to the approval process were kept in binders.

 
 
 
 

 

Analyze & Define

Use cases

Solution prioritization

Stakeholder maps

Storyboards

Key Insight

The existing process has many redundancies and points of confusion.

 
 

Determining the value of solutions

 

A stakeholder map reveals pain-points and redundancies

 

The team collaborated with stakeholders and user to storyboard solutions

 

 

Design & Build

Feature prioritization

Prototyping

Co-creation

User testing

 

Key Insight

The agile approach was essential to the iteration process that lead to the initial solution.

 
 

The team narrowed to six rules for determining the retrofitting need

 

The team prototyping and testing the app

 
 

Presenting the MVP

 

An intermediate step: Surakshit Ghar (Safe House) to inform homeowners about safety measures

 

Presenting a VR tour of retrofitting needs at Autodesk in San Francisco

 
 
 
 

Assessments on the back-end

The homeowner answers four questions and uploads photos of their house.

 
 
 
 

The app determines the structure’s retrofitting needs

 

The assessment result is sent to regional planning offices for permitting

 
 

 

Impact

 
 
 
 
 

Let’s talk! maaloumi@gmail.com

home