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MASTER'S PROJECT: Strategic Options to Expand Local Market Access to MakaPads


Project Location:  Technology for Tomorrow, Kampala, Uganda

Summary of Project Idea:
Technology for Tomorrow is a registered company in Uganda working to apply appropriate technologies for the betterment of the environment and humanity.  They produce MakaPads to provide effective, low-cost sanitary napkins made from papyrus and paper waste.  Access to sanitary napkins is a crucial barrier to the education of women in the developing world.  Currently, approximately 95% of their supply goes to the United Nations for use in refugee camps.  This both introduces significant risks for the company and restricts the supply of MakaPads available to be sold locally.  The company would like to expand access to sanitary napkins in Uganda.  To realize this goal, the organization requires an understanding of the current state of the market and current market actors, as well as an analysis of current capabilities to develop a business case.  The project team will work to develop this business plan.

SWB is a student organization sponsored by the Center for Sustainable Systems.  Their mission is to create a network of sustainability practitioners through the design and implementation of sustainable projects and human capacity development.

Students working on this project will have to travel to Uganda to meet with stakeholders at least twice during the project duration.  The first trip is envisioned as a discovery and market assessment trip.  The second trip will be a presentation of final business plan to key stakeholders including CEO and business team, relevant NGOs and aid agencies.

Expected Deliverables:
A detailed analysis of the current field of sanitary pads available in the region, a creative business model and a detailed business plan for Makapads, facilitation of strategic workshop to formalize the organization's guiding principles and objectives.

The inputs will be sued to address Makapad's current sustainable growth challenges.


University of Michigan - Sustainability Without Borders
Research Areas
Consumer Products & Packaging