Quality Assurance and Project Log/Journal April 21 – 25

Quality Assurance:
Product and Process

We need to make sure that we have a good product, but also recognize that the product will have problems outside of the laboratory. Field conditions will provide constant stress on the product, so we need to develop a dynamic process to address those problems. This will be done in the form of a written manual and training for a few members. This allows for repairs to be done locally. If problems cannot be resolved locally, it will go back to SEWA and the design will be changed to ensure a better product.

Anurag has proposed a distribution model that has partial assembly at the regional level. This will give SEWA members a sense of ownership and investment in the product because they feel like they built it themselves. It may also help to push down the cost at a marginal level. Assembly needs to be fairly simplistic (probably just screwing the external components together), but even a low amount of complexity will provide some capacity for minor maintenance. Being able to see the internal components may provide owners with a better understanding of their machine, allowing them to use it more effectively.

April 21 – 25

I have spent the last four days exploring the city with my friends and developing Quality Assurance procedures. On Sunday Munish, Altaff, and myself went on a tour of the city, visiting the market, recreational areas, and shops along C.G. Road. We had a great time. On another excursion, Danesh, Chandra, and myself visited some street shops and got panipuri, a street food that was a little surprising. For those of you who haven’t had the opportunity to try panipuri, it is a round, hollow puri, fried crisp filled with a mixture of water, tamarind, chili, chaat masala, potato, onion and chickpeas. It is small enough to fit completely in one’s mouth (quite a feat).
My first project is to revamp the process documentation of the Hariyali program. I am to address the overall outcome/strength of the initiative, highlight the unique selling proposition, highlight testing data and capacity building opportunities, cover distribution and monitoring, and elaborate on how this model can be used internationally. My workday is usually about 8 hours and is spent developing the process documents, finishing course work for the classes I am missing at Antioch, maintaining this journal, and interacting with other interns and SEWA operatives. I am impressed by the democratic nature of the organization. It seems as though most decisions are made by consensus, and although the director is male, the majority of the action steps appear to be taken by members.

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