November 13, 2020

Our Network in Action: 2015 SEAD Summit & Symposium

March Madness is over here at Duke University and we are feeling bittersweet that the fun is over and that we have to wait a whole year to see our friends again.

IPIHD’s  March Madness starts with the three-day SEAD Summit held at Duke University from March 18th-20th when 25 of our IPIHD/SEAD Innovators come to share their insights on transforming health care—from technology to health services –in East Africa, India and beyond. During the Summit, innovators spend time in workshops designed to challenge their growth strategies and network with one another.

The final day of the summit was the Duke Symposium on Scaling Innovations in Global Health, which brought together students, innovators, and global health professionals across sectors for exciting and inspiring dialogue on the future of global health.

“I think we can end extreme poverty in the next two decades but not on our current path,” said Ann Mei Chang, Director of the USAID Global Development Lab, during her keynote address.   Chang highlighted the work of Sproxil one of the innovators in the IPIHD network, as an example of a successful approach to scaling innovation. Sproxil’s award-winning solution enables their clients in emerging markets to optimize sales and protect the integrity of their products through a Mobile Product Authentication (MPA) system.

Ann Mei Chang, Director of the USAID Global Development Lab, during her SEAD Symposium keynote address.

The Symposium also featured a panel of SEAD Innovators moderated by IPIHD Executive Director Krishna Udayakumar: “Lessons & Learning on the Path to Scale” in which innovators discussed what they’ve learned on their road to scaling their innovations and what opportunities and challenges they have faced. Panelists reflected on their different paths to scale but focused on the importance of building on available technology and using evidence-based research to partner across sectors and build all the pieces of the necessary ecosystem.  Both Chang and the panelists urged us individuals and organizations alike to embrace failures, while learning how to fail smart and fast in order to have a greater chance for success for scaling innovation – a theme IPIHD reported on earlier this year in its Innovation and Insights paper: “Smart Failure.”

The Social Entrepreneurship Accelerator at Duke (SEAD) is a joint initiative between the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE) at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, the International Partnership for Innovative Healthcare Delivery (IPIHD, and the Duke Global Health Institute (DGHI), in collaboration with the Developing World Healthcare Technology (DHT-Lab) at Pratt School of Engineering and Durham-based Investors’ Circle, the world’s oldest, largest and most successful early-stage impact investing network.  To learn more about SEAD go to:

Did you attend the SEAD Summit and Symposium?  Check out pictures from the event here