Rocío Briceño

Rocío Briceño

Social Impact Agile: Agile in Unexpected Places

Saturday, February 13, 2021


Washington DC is one of the most powerful cities on the planet. Just as an example, multilateral Development Banks provide billions of dollars in loans, international donations, grants and professional advice to maintain the world order and enhance social development. 

I am from Costa Rica and I have worked on social development projects focused on poor populations and reduction of inequality, not only from the agile inclusion in policy writing but also from the implementation one. 

Everything we do around public policy is a project aimed to make an impact to achieve a better society. But even though it is a project, Agile methods and techniques can be used to improve the process of creation and reduce the inefficiency of implementing that policy. For instance, in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, the water supply infrastructure was not enough to serve the whole city.  From using Design Thinking to applying Scrum at Scale, we were able to crowdsource the power of 400 people from different areas of the government and private sector. In other instances, we helped rescue projects throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Given the success that we have seen, we are spreading the word of Agile through organizations such as the World Bank, IDB, Organization of American States, United Nations Development Program. Also, we are approaching other sectors such as the military, education, and humanitarian aid. 

In the last few years, we have been making progress in the application of agility to international collaboration projects. I do not think of it as applying Agile out of IT. I prefer to think of it as bringing agility to non-traditional sectors to achieve social impact.