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  • Chidozie Uzoezie

COVID-19: Middel & Partners and FORTH to Develop Solutions

The COVID-19 pandemic has done what few ever thought possible — grounded planes, shut mines and factories, emptied malls and closed schools, not in one country only, but all around the world.

As the number of infections grows, and more people succumb to the virus, governments, companies and civil society organizations worry about how we will survive this unprecedented disaster, one that the UN has called the worst humanitarian crisis since World War 2. The global economy is in shambles and a sense of desperation is palpable.

This has encouraged Middel & Partners to spearhead a project together with the FORTH Innovation Collective ( to assemble a team of design thinking and innovation experts from around the world to work together to develop solutions to the crisis.

The team spans continents, representing many countries, including The Netherlands, Germany, South Africa, Italy, Spain, Greece, Romania, Hungary, China and UK.

The goal is to reduce the negative effect of the virus now and in the post-pandemic world, as well as to provide practical and immediate solutions, to contain the spread of the virus and mitigate the effect on infected people, social systems and the economy.

With the assignment set and the team already past Full Steam Ahead (Phase 1), the members are Observing and Learning (Phase 2), gathering relevant information from around the world, and identifying the most critical issues (frictions) facing people.

Technologies are also being evaluated to determine whether they can solve some of the most critical frictions and consider whether they are innovation opportunities.

The need for people from all over the world to stay home to limit the spread of COVID-19 has ironically united everyone, despite the distance, and this group of international experts, from all over the world, has come to find the innovative solutions we so badly need.

The solutions will be available on (, social media platforms and via email to anyone free of charge.

#COVID19 #Coronavirus

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