The designers featured immerse themselves in needy communities, before attempting to find solutions to problems of waste, sanitation, and poor health. The exhibit comes at an opportune moment as the number of people living in informal settlements, or slums will double to 2 billion by 2030.
One example of a smart design solution is the Community Cooker in Kibera, Kenya, created by architects James Howard Archer and Mumo Musava. "A far safer alternative than Kenya's typical use of wood and charcoal cooking fires (which cause respiratory diseases and environmental degradation)," explains Allison Arieff. "This communal oven not only helps eliminate those risks, it also runs on trash, thus reducing a significant waste management problem the community had been experiencing."
"The Community Cooker not only makes people (let's not call them "users") safer, it promotes social exchange and entrepreneurship within communities."