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Do mLabs still make a difference a second assessment

 

Do mLabs still make a difference a second assessment
This report is a second assessment of
the mLabs (mobile application labs) program following the
2014 assessment: Do mLabs Make a Difference? This second
assessment focuses on essentially the same three questions
as the first assessment. In September 2016, the infoDev mLab
program engaged Sonjara, Inc. to perform this rapid
assessment in Armenia (mLab Eastern Europe, South Caucasus,
and Central Asia), Kenya (m:lab East Africa), Senegal
(CTIC/mLab West Africa), and South Africa (mLab Southern
Africa). This second assessment is based on an examination
and visits to each mLab, with more than 160 field interviews
and facilitated focus group discussions. The team analyzed
more than 70 mLab-supported companies, conducting in-depth
interviews with 59 mLabs start-ups as well as with mLab
staff, investors, comparable start-ups, customers, and
others in the ecosystem. The team also performed a review of
documents, data, and materials provided by the mLabs and
companies, as well as collecting leading practices and
background research from industry and stakeholder sources.
The report findings show that, since their launch in 2010
and since the 2014 assessment, mLabs have coevolved with
their ecosystems, both influencing and being influenced by
rapidly changing environments, marked by increased
involvement by the private sector in both incubation and
investment, and the rapid changes and improvements in
technology infrastructure. The mLabs’ impacts on start-ups,
start-up customers and on the digital entrepreneurship
infrastructure are discussed. Recommendations are given
strengthening program management among other things.
Source: The World Bank – Private sector development