Welcome to our Good Ideas Blog.
Here we gather examples of products, tools and services that we love and that have been created following our own ethos: they don't nag people to "do good", but instead are all things people simply use and like because they are fun, cool, money saving or useful.
And yet in using these things, people are incidentally "doing good" and their actions are having positive effect on a major social or environmental issue.
Ideas posted regularly so keep coming back for fresh inspiration.....
December 24, 2013, No Comments yet. Add yours.
Good is: Entertaining and Fun.
Issues: Education, Environmental, and Food Waste.
Yo Gabba Gabba! (http://yogabbagabba.com/#) is a live-action program aimed at young children. Like programmes such as Sesame Street and Teletubbies, it has an educational element encouraging positive behaviours, such as learning a new skill or interacting with friends, but dressed up in the vibrant colours, catchy music and awesome characters that make entertaining TV.
We also think its clever that they frequently feature household names such as Elijah Wood, Jack Black, Tony Hawks and members from internationally successful bands like The Killers, so the secondary audience (parents watching with kids) are kept interested and encouraged to stay tuned. They cleverly select these cameos from the pool of celebs that would be of greatest interest to this audience – so 90s bands such as Weezer have made an appearance. Inspired.
There are lots of Yo Gabba Gabba! branded products that can be purchased from their online shop, ranging from CDs to clothing, from interactive books to lunch pack accessories. One that is of interest to our work on food waste (http://wearewhatwedo.org/portfolio/food-waste/) is their “Party in My Tummy” book, which familiarises children with healthier foods and encourages plate clearing. This is a good example of a very implicit approach (http://wearewhatwedo.org/what-we-do/) to behaviour change – kids aren’t told to reduce waste, rather the positive behaviours that reduce food waste are encouraged via an engaging product that has incentives to use and buy it beyond social change, including entertainment for kids and an easy life for parents.
Yo Gabba Gabba! is broadcast in the USA, UK, Canada, Australia and Ireland and performed live shows throughout the States last year (often to sell out venues) and won the Best Non-Animated Series and Best Music at The Kidscreen awards this year.
December 17, 2013, No Comments yet. Add yours.
Good is: Easy, Saves energy, Saves money, social, and Useful.
Issues: Community, Disability, Environmental, Food Waste, and Inter-personal Contact.
Casserole Club (http://www.casseroleclub.com/) is a community-led network where members who cook a little extra are matched up with other local users to share it with, with a particular focus on those who find it a little extra difficult to cook.
The tool provides an opportunity to get to know local people, encourages people to cook fresh, healthy meals, gives them a reason to try out new recipes and could reduce food waste. It also makes it easier to help members of the community that are less able. We like the practical, facilitate approach it takes, and the fact that it builds local social capital whilst tackling environmental issues, but we wonder how you could make the social aims more implicit and whether this would make it appeal to an even wider audience.
Casserole club is currently running in Reigate and Banstead, Tower Hamlets and Barnet and we hope to see it grow in the future.
December 10, 2013, No Comments yet. Add yours.
Good is: Entertaining, Fun, and Useful.
Issues: Mental Health.
The Tripy II GPS (http://www.tripy.eu/en/tripy-2-gps-road-book-motorcycle-road) is a satellite navigation system which, as well as helping people to arrive at their desired location in the fastest or shortest route, also helps people to travel via the most scenic route. According to the website “Tripy’s clear and simple guidance system will take you on the most scenic tourist routes. Its instructions are very easy to follow so you won’t lose sight of the road or the scenery.” This is a great example of a tool for implicit (or hidden) facilitative behaviour change as it is designed as a commercial product but can help people to take a break and prioritise things which are conducive to subjective wellbeing, which can aid their mental health, while they are traveling.
December 3, 2013, No Comments yet. Add yours.
Good is: Cool, Entertaining, and Fun.
Issues: Mental Health.
According to it’s creators “Collect is an app for iPhone & iPod (http://collectphotoapp.com/) that helps people create a rich record of their lives by storing one or more photos every day in a monthly calendar” though this app “was purpose-built for photo-a-day & Project 365 enthusiasts” as an incidental consequence it has leveraged the ubiquitous nature of smart phones and popularity of ‘daily photos’ to facilitate mindful photography. Mindful Photography is a positive psychology exercise which evidence suggests can increase positive affect by increasing feelings of gratitude that come from dwelling on the things that you are happy for. Positive psychology experts Jamie Kurtz and Sonia Lyubomirsky state that they believe “mindful photography to be effective because it helps people examine their everyday lives….with an eye out for beauty, meaning, and value”
September 10, 2013, 1 Comment. See and add yours.
Good is: Easy, Saves money, and social.
Issues: CO2 Emissions, Community, Environmental, and Inter-personal Contact.
Have you ever made one of those journeys that take forever, where there’s nothing to do but stare at the countryside and dip in and out of radio stations as you weave up the motorway. With BlaBlaCar (http://www.blablacar.com/) that can now be a thing of the past. BlaBlaCar is a trusted community marketplace that can help you make some extra money by filling up the empty seats in your car. So not only will you make back some of your petrol money and have someone more interesting to talk to than the voice in your head, you’ll also help to save the planet. So far BlaBlaCar reports that it’s 3 million members have shared over 1.8 billion miles and shaved almost 500,000 tonnes off of our global CO2 output, making this a really great example of environmental behavioural change for the masses.
September 3, 2013, No Comments yet. Add yours.
Good is: Cool, Easy, Saves energy, Saves money, and Saves time.
Issues: CO2 Emissions and Environmental.
We love Nest (http://www.nest.com/)! It exemplifies the power that beautiful and intuitively designed commercial products can have in facilitating huge social and environmental change.
Nest, a new age thermostat, is a clever gadget that learns what you like and what you do over time to help you make tiny changes to your heating habits, saving you money on your energy bill. Brainchild of Tony Fadell, inventor of the iPod, Nest is an easy to fit, easy to use device that is very easy on the eyes. Boasting a iPhone app for controlling the temperature of your home remotely, and features like ‘Auto-Away” which autonomously lowers the temperature when it realises you’ve popped out, the Nest is said to be capable of saving a household $173 per year (and that’s before you’ve even begun experimenting with these amazing features).
This is a product that takes all of the advice of popular money saving communications and distills it into a practical and easy to use commercial product that keeps lowering your energy consumption even when you forget. That’s a clever, facilitative way to change behaviour. Saving households from huge energy bills, while providing huge incidental benefits for the environment that no one at the company even needs to shout about.
To read about Nest’s impact so far download their White Paper here: http://downloads.nest.com/efficiency_simulation_white_paper.pdf