During a trip to Bangladesh as part of a UVA January term class on social enterprises, first-year student Daniel Ng (Col '15) noticed children there were playing in unsafe places, largely because there were no playgrounds. Inspired by what he saw, Ng submitted a proposal for an inexpensive playground design that would improve safety and boost school attendance. His idea won the international BRAC Innovation Challenge, a competition sponsored by a Bangladesh-based organization dedicated to alleviating poverty. "Great play spaces can be created with very little financial capital," Ng says.
Less is often more, but not when it comes to problem-solving and solution-seeking, when our brains default toward additive rather than subtractive changes.