Women in Technology Transfer : BTC - Shetech Approch
Building Technology Centre

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
Urban and rural India were marked by glaring disparity between the rich and poor, the poor being deprived of the basic necessities for survival, leave alone a decent living. Poverty and plenty were juxtaposed due to historical and social causes. Science and technology had answers to many of the vexing problems, but there was little or no effort to take the fruits of science and technology to the field. Women, specially rural women were virtually kept out of the ambit of science and technology and by and were large ignorant of the potential of technology transfer to improve the quality of life. It is in this juncture that a few inspired women came forward to form an organization, the Building Technology Centre (BTC) to consolidate the gains of science for the betterment of women leading to gender mainstreaming in society. The situation before the initiative was characterized by acute shortage of housing in India, especially for the poor people. Though construction activity accounts f or more than 50% of India’s development outlays, the cost of construction kept on increasing at rates which are over 50% of the rate of inflation. The housing sector was subject to debilitating influences such as spiralling land cost, exploitative contracting system and non-availability of affordable building materials. Added to this was the: Lack of awareness among the masses and practitioners regarding appropriate technology options for sustainable habitat development, Lack of an effective delivery system to transfer technologies from R&D institutions to the ultimate users. Prevalence of a construction culture, which promotes excessive use of energy intensive and high, cost building materials like steel, cement, etc. Adverse impact of the above on scarce material resources and the need for adopting cost effective environment friendly (CEEF) alternatives. Lack of trained manpower to propagate sustainable technology options to the grassroots. Non- involvement of women and weaker sections in the construction sector and non-inclusion of Cost Effective Environment Friendly (CEEF) technology options in academic programmes of technical institutions. The problems were compounded by The reluctance of the house builders to use cost-effective and environment friendly technologies Inadequate financial support for transfer of technology, organization of training program and skill up gradation Non existence of legislative and policy support for CEEF and low-cost technology vis-à-vis high cost conventional technology Lack of institutional mechanism to provide back-up services for affordable housing under a single window Gross inadequacy of an effective network of NGOs to convey the lessons of CEEF housing to the end-users. When the Building Technology Centre – Shetech initiative made its entry in the field, there was an impending housing shortage of 40 million in India. Unemployment and consequent poverty remained rampant though the housing sector had the potential for employment generation, helping in poverty alleviation. House construction remained an exclusive domain of the men and women were virtually kept out of the activity.

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
A group of inspired rural women with the help of their male counterparts, who had scientific orientation, registered a society called Building Technology Centre (BTC) to take appropriate technology from research institutions for application in vital areas such as housing, provision of drinking water, poverty alleviation, health care, education, sanitation and hygiene. Women and youth were trained in the application of science and technology specific to local needs through the BTC – Shetech initiative. Community management of services was established and peoples action ensured for effective implementation of development initiatives. Building Technology Centre (BTC) networked with a large number of like-minded NGOs and CBOs and triggered a national movement for the application of science and technology to improve living standards. Government adopted this model in the Nirmithi Kendras (Building Centres) set up to improve public delivery of technology transfer. The Building Technology Centre acts as a grass root level technology transfer mechanism for taking the benefits of the R&D into actual application in the field. With a network of centres in different parts of the country, BTC is engaged in the promotion and transfer of appropriate technologies from "lab to land", skill upgradation and training to local artisans on cost effective, ecologically appropriate and energy saving technologies, production and marketing of building materials and components. These centres are dissemination centres to general public as well as providers of services to Govt. / private institutions /NGOs / Individuals. Today, the movement is truly a nation wide network in India cris crossing the length and breadth of the country. It has been able to provide training to over 15,000 local artisans and executed works worth over US $ 260 Million. Building Technology Centres have come to stay after the days of trials and tribulations over the last two decades. The initial difficulties were overcome through enlisting the support of opinion leaders in the society and the media for creating awareness, and undertaking advocacy functions to influence legislative measures and policy changes in favor of this approach. BTC took a conscious decision to launch massive out- reach programmes for dissemination of affordable housing practices and application of appropriate technology. At the global level this was done through participating in global conferences and exhibitions. At the local level BTC has established its social relevance and overcome the initial resistance by holding social dialogues among the stakeholders and stepping in to provide tangible help during disasters. Building Technology Centres were instrumental in constructing houses for the rehabilitation of earth quake victims of Latur in India. BTC has also roped in cultural leaders to bring about cultural change in society in favor of appropriate technology and affordable housing. BTC has brought in its fold senior citizens and youth as champions of its affordable housing campaign and technology dissemination. The impact of Building Technology Centres have been measured quantitatively and qualitatively by Govt. of India, HUDCO and Management Institutions. BTC – Shetech initiative promoted eco-friendly options in housing, agriculture, water management, health and food, transportation, industry, tourism and other related spheres through its integrating units in the non government and governmental sectors. Some of the achievements of the project include the following: • 40% cost reduction in construction • Exploitative contracting system has been contained • 15,000 persons trained in appropriate technology every year • Through awareness generation and capacity building, the public are oriented to environment friendly living through organic farming, community health care, disease prevention. • Research is carried out in developing traditional knowledge and heritage science which suit the way of living ideal to the region. Eco-friendly technology which was confined to research institutions is steadily flowing to the field. A new generation has been groomed up who are oriented towards an environment friendly way of life, minimizing chemicals and energy intensive industrial products. Health care has improved through nature friendly medication and curative approaches.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
BTC – Shetech initiative is creative in the sense that women power which had a latent existence in the rural society was consolidated and harassed to achieve time-bound and measurable results. Its innovative aspects lie in the fact that a new at institutional delivery system was created to take technology on regular basis from lab to land. The innovative elements of the initiative can be classified as follows : a. Technological innovation – A good number of innovative technology options developed by the R&D institutions in India have been remaining in the shelves for decades. By transferring innovative technology from ‘lab to land’ BTC has demonstrated that such technology can reach the end users. b. Organizational innovation- Building Technology Centre, which is run by volunteers, has been an organizational innovation. A chain of grass root level institutions providing integrated services for sustainable habitat development through technology transfer has become a reality in India over a period of less than 2 decades. A global network of NGOs to propagate the CEEF concept in housing is emerging as a vibrant forum, thanks to the initiative of BTC. c. Conceptual innovation – Many models have been tried by successive governments in India to popularize intermediate technology. These attempts did not yield optimum results. BTC – Shetech could fill this critical gap.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
The strategy was implemented by organizing women’s self help groups in the local areas through the Shetech initiative and integrating them in a wide network, spanning different parts of India. Capacity building was undertaken among the members of this network so that they could address the local needs through the application of appropriate technology relevant to the context. By establishing a network of grass root level institutions for the transfer of eco-friendly technology BTC - Shetech promotes eco friendly living by disseminating non-conventional energy such as solar, wind, wave and geothermal energy. Sustainable agriculture technology such as bio manure, bio pesticides, bio control agents, organic food are encouraged. Land and waste management using eco-friendly and cost effective technologies for solid waste treatment, non burn technologies for biomedical waste; sewage treatment and disposal; plastic recycling, industrial waste treatment, toxic waste management, control of soil pollution, water conservation and treatment, eco friendly habitat development, health and healing using traditional healing practices, environment friendly transportation technology such as natural gas vehicle, solar powered automobile, low emission automobiles, pollution prevention technologies and environment monitoring and measurement instruments are popularized by BTC. This is carried out by a network of institutions such as Building Technology Centres, Applied Technology and training centres, Prikriti Green Concepts, SSP Architects & Designs, Orion Projects, Shan Solar, Knot Solutions, RD Costructions etc. Production centres have been set up to produce materials using cost effective energy efficient and environment friendly technology. Training is imparted regularly in various branches of applied technology and science in urban as well as rural areas. Employment opportunities have been generated, especially for women, in construction, micro enterprises, agriculture, dairying, and floriculture. The innovative approach has been adopted by governments at the national and provincial level and policy decisions taken for the propagation of innovative technology. Universities have included this technology in the curriculum in the technical education institutions. A network of non-government institutions have been formed for transfer of technology in the municipalities and local bodies in India. Implementation of the action plan was done through the aegis of Community based organizations, NGOs, partner institutions and individuals Government, local self governing institutions, District Administration. To implement the programme and monitor the progress, people’s committee (“Nattukkoottam” in local language) were formed in the villages. Certain villages were identified and developed as ‘eco-villages’ where concentrated efforts were made to demonstrate the most economical and most scientific ways eco-friendly living and conservation of water. Under the ‘People’s Planning Programme’ of the local self governing institutions (Panchayats), organize farming and use of eco-friendly technology was taken up as a priority item and local projects for conservation of water were implemented as part of the planning process. BTC’s strategy is to equip the people to access affordable housing through BTC chapters and NGO networks with local mornings. These strategies and objectives were facilitated after detailed deliberations among the network partners and periodically reviewed by the members at national and local levels. As the movement grew guidelines for establishment of BCs were framed and circulated amongst the net - working agencies, an action plan manual was prepared detailing the procedure for establishment, source of funds and other requirements, model bylaws and rules and regulation of BTCs, Model Project reports, the list of R&D bodies and the technologies propagated by them was published and made available to the prospective agencies for setting up of BTCs. R&D efforts of National Laboratories, State Institutions, NGO’s and efforts of professionals like Laurie Baker are extensively promoted through live projects. These institutes have developed innovative and cost effective construction technologies and building materials such as under reamed pile foundation, stabilized compressed earth blocks, stabilized adobe, Fal-G stabilized mud blocks, Clay flyash burnt bricks, Flyash/sand lime bricks, flyash-lime gypsum products,lato blocks, Flyash based light weight aerated concrete walling and roofing blocks, Rat Trap bond, Bambo-Mat based walls, composite ferrosystems, pyramidal brick roof, Guna tile roof, Micro concrete roofing tile,precast brick panels, ferrocement channel/shell units,funicular shells, Fillerslabs, partition/ceiling/panels made out of wood waste, rice husk and bagasse,precast RCC doors and windows, brick arches, corbels, brick jails, ferrocementwater tanks etc. These technologies/ materials will be cost effective to anextent of 40% when adopted in the building construction. The network of building centres have adopted these technologies in the projects undertaken. BTC regularly published the brochures / News letters / Videos as dissemination materials and conducted Seminar / Workshops to create awareness regarding the movement.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
BTC activities are carried out by network of institutions such as Prakriti Green Concepts, SPP Architects & Designers, Institute of Habitat Education, Housing, Environment and Rural Developing Society, Institute of Development, Habitat Alliance, Orion Projects, Shan Solar, Knot Solutions, Habitat India initiative, RD Constructions etc. The premier Research and Development (R&D) institutions in India such as the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), Roorkie and Structural Engineering Research Centre, Chennai and the Regional Research Laboratories under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research and Council for Agriculture Research provide low cost technology options for dissemination in the field. Structural Engineering Research Centre offered to send their trainers to demonstrate low cost technology and train the engineers, masons, architects, carpenters and artisans. Technology transfer which started in the field of housing has later on triggered off a movement for the transfer of appropriate technology in different fields of life. Institutions in the country, such as the Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) and the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), and the Regional Research Laboratories were also gradually drawn in. At the BTC a few masons, carpenters, engineers and architects collectively learnt the art of constructing houses using alternate technology and locally available building materials. The stakeholders include NGOs, State Government, District Administration, Housing organizations, educational institutions, Construction Workers Cooperatives and Private entrepreneurs, Panchayati Raj Institutions, Farmers groups, Women Organizations.
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
Being an organization for dissemination of science and technology harnessing technical resources was the priorty. The research institutions under Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, universities such as Columbia University, USA and Birla Institute of Technology and Sciences, Pillani, national institutes such as The Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) and Structural Engineering Research Centre (SERC) provided the techno-scientific resources. Financial resources were mobilized by levying user fee for the services provided, charging subscription fee from the members, sale of cost effective building materials, proceeds from books and publications, occasional grants and donations and local consultancy. Human resources were provided by the members themselves with supplementary resources from the technical institutions involved. In view of the increasing complexity of construction technology, the training programme of the Building Centres has included all trades related to housing in the skill improvement programmes. Project Engineers and other training staff of Building Centres are included among the trainers, as also instructors of Industrial Training Institutes and teaching staff of Polytechnics concerned with housing. With a view to exposing master craftsmen to the latest developments in cost-effective technology relating to housing, training and orientation programmes are conducted on a periodic basis. Students of architecture and civil engineering and teachers of several institutions are also given training. The training facilities of the Centres are being made available to voluntary agencies and individuals interested in housing. A training programme is generally conducted for three to four months for a batch of about 25 persons, including women. The training mainly consists of on-the job experience in the use of low cost materials and construction techniques. The trainees are exposed to the new housing designs developed by the Building Centres to suit the requirements of a particular area and the most efficient use of locally available materials like mud, coconut shell, and laterite blocks. Some of the Centres also provide advanced training to a few persons who have already received the preliminary training. Those who receive advanced training are given the necessary assistance to set up their own Sub-Centres and to undertake construction work independently. A few of them are absorbed either as Master Masons in the construction projects of the Building Centres or as trainers. A large number of workers belonging to economically weaker section have derived benefits from the training schemes, even though they have had no previous experience. Resources were made available from different sources like Govt of India grant assistance for establishing initial infrastructure development and training facilities through its budgetary support, annually, totaling about Rs 236 million. In addition Govt. of India's training fund of over Rs182 million under NRY was released. The Ministry of Rural Development is also extending funds upto Rs 1.50 million per Building Centre to achieve 2 BCs in every state which are to be expended to all Taluks. HUDCO provide R&D grant assistance and Soft Loan assistance for Working Capital and Machinery besides channelising grant funds from KfW. Till date an assistance of Rs 100 million has been provided by HUDCO from its resources. In addition, KfW grant money of an order of Rs 187 million has been made available for the capacity building of the building centre movement. BMTPC has made available significant resources for procurement of machinaries and equipment’s for upgrading the capacity of the Building Centres. In addition, the State Government Educational Institutions/ NGOs/ CBOs provides land for the Building Centres besides funds under various training programme.

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
Training of women and youth in the selection, consolidation, application and dissemination of appropriate technology has been carried out regularly. Other outputs include developing a shelf of appropriate technologies to suit the various geo-climatic conditions of India; establishing a vibrant delivery system with reach and spread in different parts of India; and creating scientific awareness among the common men and women, specially the vulnerable section of society. The most significant output has been in the housing sector. Environment technology is being utilized in India in one million houses every year. A chain of institutions have been established in India for dissemination of appropriate technology such as Prakriti Green Concepts, SPP Architects & Designers, Institute of Habitat Education, Housing, Environment and Rural Developing Society, Institute of Development, Habitat Alliance, Orion Projects, Shan Solar, Knot Solutions, Habitat India Initiative, R D Constructions and Nirmithi Kendras. Technology developed by research institutions under the council for scientific and industrial research are transferred to the field e.g. Building technology developed by Central Building Research Institute, agricultural technology developed by Council for Agriculture Research and Agricultural Universities and Dairy Technology through the National Diary Development Board. National and state governments have been prevailed upon to pass legislation and adopt policy decisions favoring technology transfer. Effective linkage has been established among the research bodies and industries. Curriculum of universities have been modified giving importance to eco-friendly technologies. Cost Effective and Environment Friendly (CEEF) technology has effectively utilised substitute natural materials for Steel, Concrete and Aluminium the process of manufacture of which releases substantial quantity of pollutants. Treated plantation timber like Rubber and Coconut available in abundance in Kerala is encouraged to be used. This helps in locking away sequestered Carbon for long periods. Encouraging the use of plantation timber significantly reduces the pressure on natural forests. BTC propagates the use of stabilised and compacted mud blocks using local manual energy instead of burnt bricks which consumes substantial firewood and fertile clay soil. CEEF technology uses only 40% sand in construction compared to conventional technology thereby substantially helping in the conservation of this natural resource which is mined from river beds causing destruction of River ecology. Laterite blocks are usually used for walls and floorings instead of burnt bricks thus reducing the use of fuel wood for Brick manufacturing. To ward off resource depletion, emphasis is laid on recycling of waste. Timber waste produced at the manufacturing stage is reused as fuel for drying kilns, or as wood produces such as particleboard, fibreboard, chips or mulch. Agricultural and industrial wastes like fly ash, coconut pith and fibre, rice husk, cotton waste are utilized for building materials manufacture.

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
Progress of activities were monitored concurrently by joint monitoring committees consisting of representatives of the local academic institutions and the Building Technology Centre. Since the local needs were identified by the village communities and benificries themselves . there was consensnal approach in undertaking development projects. This lead to watch dog committee being formed in the local area to oversee implementation. All these development activities are subject to social audit, which gained statutory sanctity through the Panchyat Raj act. Evaluation of the projects was entrusted to academic institutions of repute who could view the results objectively. To make the implementation transparent and effective and monitoring efficient the potentials of ICT was utilized in phases. Implementation of the action plan was done through the aegis of Government, local self governing institutions, District Administration, community based organizations, NGOs, institutions and individuals. To implement the programme and monitor the progress, people’s committee (“Nattukkoottam” in local language) were formed in the villages. Certain water-scare villages were identified and developed as ‘eco-villages’ where concentrated efforts were made to demonstrate the most economical and most scientific ways of conserving water. This was monitored by the Nattukoottams. Under the ‘People’s Planning Programme’ of the local self governing institutions (Panchayats), water conservation was taken up as a priority item and local projects for conservation of water were implemented as part of the planning process. Government also adopted these ideas for implementation and included a few projects in Government’s development plan for the state. As the organization and network grew and its reach and spread increased it was considered necessary to put in place as centralized planning and monitoring unit manned by professionals who volunteered their services for the same. Some of the IT professionals who became members of the movement introduced ICT for monitoring the progress of implementation of the technology transfer mission, cost effective house construction and rural water supply systems. With the introduction of e-monitoring system, it was possible to have information at one point, though the implementation was decentralized. Considering the fact that the number of network partners are involved in the implementation the program has been put in place with well defined roles and responsibilities for each agency. With this end in view, appropriate management structures have also been put in place.

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
The obstacles faced by Building Technology Centres in the formative years were the reluctance of the house builders to use cost-effective and environment friendly technologies, lack of field level delivery system to transfer technology from 'lab to land', inadequate financial support for transfer of technology, organization of training programme and skill up gradation, non existence of legislative and policy support for CEEF and low-cost technology vis-à-vis high cost conventional technology, lack of institutional mechanism to provide back-up services for appropriate technology under a single window and gross inadequacy of an effective network of NGOs. One of the major obstacles that the Building Centre had to face in the early days was the misconception that the low cost technology was associated with low quality and that it was for the poor man only. BTC had to fight against this stereotype by creating awareness among the public that cost-effective technology is consistent with durability and high quality. Besides constructing low-cost houses for the economically weaker groups, BTC built houses for the middle class and even for non-resident Indians. In a housing scenario where housing was a commercial activity marked by resplendence and luxury, BTC came out successful by building a standard residential building at Rs. 600 per square feet. BTC’s credibility came to be established when it began to add in its track record public buildings, ranging from village offices, schools, hospitals, anti-disaster shelters, government servants’ quarters, industrial estates, shopping complexes, auditoria, indoor stadia, working women’s hostels, T.V. relay stations, tourist resorts and residential houses for high, middle as well as low income groups and economically weaker sections, with a saving of up to 30 per cent in costs. BTC could overcome the initial hurdles and spread its message through audio-visual programmes, seminars, interactive sessions with villagers and circulation of literature (pamphlets, brochures, and others) in the mother tongue in cost effective technology.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
The key benefits of the BTC-Shetech are: • A network of institutions has been established to transfer technology developed by premier research institutions in agriculture, housing, healthcare and other areas. • Governments have been moved to pass legislation and adopt policy decisions, favouring technology transfer. • Effective linkage has been established among the research bodies and industries to promote CEEF technology. • Curriculum of universities have been modified giving importance to eco-friendly technologies. • Poverty alleviation, employment generation and gender mainstreaming are facilitated. • Through awareness generation and capacity building, the public are oriented to environment friendly living through organic farming, community health care and disease prevention. • Publications in the vernacular on eco-friendly technology and outreach programmes among women and youth undertaken regularly. • Research is carried out in developing traditional knowledge and heritage science which suit the way of living ideal to the region. • The use of CEEF technology reduces construction cost by 40%. India constructs one million houses every year using CEEF technology. • Middlemen have been eliminated through direct transfer of technology and services, increasing accessibility to low cost technology and availability of supervisory skill in the locality. • 15,000 artisans trained. • Earthquake resistant houses built using this technology. • Production centres for CEEF products established in different parts of India. • Increased employment opportunities, especially for women and consequent poverty reduction. • Reduction of disease from eco-hostile products and way of living. • Carbon sequestration and management facilitated. • Increased priority by local governments for CEEF technology projects in their plan. Environmental Implication By using treated timber and ferro-cement as substitute of steel, cement, aluminium in construction green house effect is reduced. Carbon dioxide emission due to the use of brick in an average building is 81.5 tonnes. This has been reduced using substituted like soil-stabilised blocks. A steel framed house accounts for the release of 3.5 tonnes of carbon but a similar house in timber frame can store 3.1 tonnes of carbon. A steel beam requires more than 10 times the energy of the equivalent timber beam. Brick cladding for houses uses significantly more energy than wood cladding. Aluminum window frames use over 50 times the energy equivalent wooden frames; On a weight-for-weight basis, the manufacture of sawn timber involves approximately 10-30% of the energy needed to manufacture steel and less than 6% of the energy needed to manufacture aluminium; and Much of the energy used for drying kilns is waste material from the harvesting process. In comparison, most of the energy used in the extraction and processing of substitute materials is non-renewable fossil fuels. To ward off resource depletion to the extent possible BTC lays emphasis on recycling of waste to wealth. The demonstrable result of specific projects such as the Project Water Save is reflected in the thrust given by the local self governing institutions to the provision of drinking water utilizing the potentials of local water sources. Community ownership and management of water supply schemes have come to stay. Scientific ways of water management has been disseminated among the beneficiaries very effectively.

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
Sustainability BTC model which had its origin in the first Building Centre founded by Dr. Bose in 1985, has today grown into a viable movement with network partners and chapters in different parts of the country. It has proved its sustainability through the following indicators • Appropriate building technology has been transferred from ‘lab-to-land’ over the last 2 decades. • More than 15,000 artisans, engineers and supervisory personnel have been trained in various technology options. • An effective delivery system through the Building Technology Centre networks have been established at the national and local level for continuous flow of technology and sharing of Best Practice experiences in the field of human settlements. • Gender mainstreaming in the science and technology sector has been made possible by training women in construction technology and enabling them to undertake construction supervision and management and promoting science education among women • Environmental sustainability in the habitat sector has been achieved to a very large extent through effective dissemination of environment-friendly technology and construction practices, substitution of energy intensive materials like cement and steel with energy efficient alternatives made mostly from naturally available materials and agro industrial waste. • The use of renewable energy has been popularized effectively. Independent studies have revealed that per 100 sq.m plinth area of construction, the CEEF technology saves 100 metric tons of Carbon di oxide from being released into the atmosphere • Building Technology Centres are run by volunteers and overheads are met by the projects undertaken by each centre. They have proved to be financially sustainable with little or no external financial assistance. • Any concept in the technology transfer will take roots in society only if it is in tune with the cultural preferences of the community. Building Technology Centres base their strategies around local cultural nuances. The CEEF housing approach has percolated among people with different cultural preferences because of this unity amidst diversity which accounts for its sustainability in different cultures. • The movement has created an effective mechanism for the transfer of appropriate technology from lab-to-land by establishing strong linkages between the R&D institutions and the end users. • BTC’s sustained efforts at human resource development in the habitat sector through training and capacity building has created a large army of artisans and supervisors who are effective instruments in transferring CEEF housing to the field in diverse geographic and cultural contexts. • Affordable housing movement has been made sustainable by establishing dynamic partnerships among universities, R&D institutions, the building industry, NGOs and the end users. • Building Technology Centres have promoted the practice of sharing of experiences through NGO networks, de-linking development from governmental rigidities, creating awareness among the public on cost-effective and environment-friendly housing, influencing policy decisions and legislative measures in favor of CEEF housing through advocacy functions and by promoting local Best Practices in affordable housing. Since all these are done with the active participation of the all the stakeholders, the BTC approach has proved itself to be very sustainable. • The CEEF housing approach contributes to sustainable level of employment generation leading to poverty alleviation and economic development. • The single window approach of the BTC which bring in its fold training, production, construction and guidance upholds their economic sustainability and financial viability.

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
The important lessons learned are • It is not enough that cost-effective and environment-friendly technologies are developed and kept in the R&D institutions, but effective grass root level delivery system is required to take technology from ‘lab-to-land’. • An effective network of Non Governmental Organisations with local moorings on a global, national and local level is necessary for the exchange of expertise, experience and know how in appropriate technology. • No model or Best Practice, howsoever successful, can be imposed on the end users. A viable model should evolve from the locality in tune with its social, cultural and economic milieu. • Women hold the key to any successful mission in sustainable development. Gender mainstreaming in this sector is therefore very crucial. • For the poor man what does not make economic sense will not make ecological sense either. Therefore economical and environmental concerns are to be integrated for sustainable development of human settlements. • There is urgent need for demystification of the housing and construction sector through training and capacity building of the beneficiaries and end users if exploitation is to be warded off. Through its advocacy functions BTC tries to influence legislative and policy measures for the promotion of affordable housing. The diplomatic channels are also used for effective coordination with Governments. • The major lesson learned is that poverty and economic deprivation in India can be contained to a very large extent through judicious application of cost effective technology alternatives. • Lack of an effective delivery system for the transfer of technology is the most retarding factor in technology transfer. • In a tradition bound and convention ridden pluralistic society people’s involvement and social education should precede social and attitudinal changes. • No social movement can be built around governmental munificence but should generate its own internal strength for sustainability, be it financial or organizational. • Organizations and movements should be rooted in the felt needs of the community or the beneficiaries and cannot be imposed from outside. • Substantial changes in attitude can be brought about only by taking the women in confidence. • Technology transfer can be effective only if supported by enabling government policies, legislative measures and reorientation of governmental departments and agencies. • Spread of literacy is essential for the spread of scientific attitude transcending deep rooted superstitions. • The organizations and projects should be self-supporting through voluntary service, community management, levying of user fee, keeping governmental support to the minimum. • The action plan of the network should be drawn up and implemented by the beneficiaries themselves, especially in the eco-villages managed by Nattukkoottams (People’s committee). • Any sustained camping for technology transfer should be based on a sound concept such as the AB model followed by BTC – Shetech. Advocacy functions should be mounted with focus on national and provincial governments urging them to initiate policy and legislative measures supporting the spread of cost effective technology.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Building Technology Centre
Institution Type:   Non-Governmental Organization  
Contact Person:   Lakshmi Ananda Bose
Title:   Director  
Telephone/ Fax:   91-11-41653344
Institution's / Project's Website:  
E-mail:   btcentre16@gmail.com  
Address:   1/13, Shantiniketan, Diplomatic Enclave
Postal Code:   110021
City:   New Delhi
State/Province:   Delhi

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