From Green Policy
Jump to navigation Jump to search


The Lesson of Appropriate Technology

Via the wiki database site of Appropedia


Intro to Appropedia

Appropedia is a site for collaborative solutions in sustainability, poverty reduction and international development...

Appropedia emphasizes sound science, principles and appropriate technology...

Appropedia believes in sharing of wisdom and project information.

Appropedia is a wiki, in our wiki community, allowing anyone online to add, remove, or edit content. Registration is encouraged but not required for contributors.

Appropedia has been described as an "appropriate technology wiki," but it is much broader than that - it is a green living wiki and a wiki for all matters of international development and aid. Appropedia is an open site for stakeholders to come together to find, create and improve scalable and adaptable solutions. This can include sharing information and collaborating with others on how we can lighten our ecological footprint and live in harmony with nature and our environment in developed countries, or discuss ie low cost technologies for use in the developing world. A key aim of Appropedia is to provide this information, to support sustainable choices - sharing knowledge to build rich, sustainable lives.

Appropedia began in April of 2006. In the earliest stages it was a collaboration between passionate people from the United States and Australia, and quickly expanded to become a global project.

Appropedia: A history of collaboration

Appropedia welcomes contributions of many types of content:

Project histories and project how-tos

Textbook-style information, tables, and figures

Best practice in sustainability, development and all related fields


Photographs and illustrations

Information for finding supplies and help

Links and information on other organizations

Collaboration pages for co-creating solutions

Discussion pages for commenting on work done and work that needs to be done

○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○

Related: Wikis for Sustainability

Adding Appropriate Links to Appropedia's Appropriate Tech Wiki

Appropriate tech / Best practices as models for practitioners


Clean Water -

Photovoltaics -

Solar Hot Water -

Solar Cooking -

Solar Water Disinfection -

Passive Solar Design -

Tidal Power -

Wind Power -

Stages in Appropriate Technology

  • Gandhi: self-reliance

  • Schumacher, 'Small Is Beautiful'

Schumacher believed that “an ounce of practice is worth a tonne of theory”.
From his youth Fritz had always read prolifically. At one stage or another during his life, Fritz questioned all the main traditions, whether intellectual, national, economic or religious.
Buddhist Economics - a ‘middle way’ between the Western model which sought to increase material wants and consumption to be satisfied through mechanised production and the Buddhist model which was to satisfy basic human needs through dignified work which also purified one’s character and was a spiritual offering. The tools of economics therefore had to be adapted to people’s needs and values and not vice versa.

Sustainable Development - His aim was to promote sustainable development strategies in the First and Third World alike. Food and fuel he saw as the two basic necessities for survival and sustainability. All communities and regions should strive to be self-sufficient in these as far as possible – otherwise they become economically and politically vulnerable. In this respect he was an early proponent of harnessing renewable energy in all its different forms and upgrading the existing traditional technologies.

  • Papanek: Design for Human Scale
  • Albertson and Faulkner: Appropriate hard and soft technologies
  • The Water Decade: Village-level operation and maintenance
  • Paul Polak: The Death of Appropriate Technology organisations

  • Appropedia: appropriate technology goes online
  • Other appropriate tech practitioners and advocates
M K Ghosh -

Buckminster Fuller -

William Moyer -
Amory Lovins -
Sanoussi Diakité -
Johan Van Lengen -

Practical Wisdom

Appropriate Technology
Natural Building
Ecological Sanitation
Green Building
Sustainable Architecture
Sustainable Agriculture
Forest Gardening
Forest Farming
Vernacular Architecture

Arne Næss -
Paul Polak -
Amy Smith -

Via Wikipedia

Appropriate technology is an ideological movement (and its manifestations) originally articulated as intermediate technology by the economist Dr. Ernst Friedrich "Fritz" Schumacher in his work Small is Beautiful. Though the nuances of appropriate technology vary between fields and applications, it is generally recognized as encompassing technological choice and application that is small-scale, decentralized, labor-intensive, energy-efficient, environmentally sound, and locally controlled. Both Schumacher and many modern-day proponents of appropriate technology also emphasize the technology as people-centered.

Appropriate technology has been used to address issues in a wide range of fields. Well-known examples of appropriate technology applications include: bike- and hand-powered water pumps (and other self-powered equipment), the universal nut sheller, self-contained solar lamps and streetlights, and passive solar building designs. Today appropriate technology is often developed using open source principles, which have led to open-source appropriate technology (OSAT) and thus many of the plans of the technology can be freely found on the Internet. OSAT has been proposed as a new model of enabling innovation for sustainable development.

Appropriate technology is most commonly discussed in its relationship to economic development and as an alternative to transfers of capital-intensive technology from industrialized nations to developing countries...

Alternative Technologies -

Community-based Economics -

Lifehacking -

Sustainable Development -

Get appropriate, act, do, make, create ....

Planet Citizen Action