AWS Government, Education, & Nonprofits Blog

Internet of (Good) Things: Technology for Creating Global Good

Data collected by the Internet of Things (IoT) devices can be used by organizations to measure the effectiveness of their work and steer their interventions towards greater impact for global good. By creating a culture of data, organizations and stakeholders are able to self-correct, evaluate, and improve health systems. But even with multiplying interventions based around IoT, many global health initiatives lack the transparent and objective field data needed.

Nexleaf Analytics is one organization that harnesses the power of data to tackle climate change, global health, and food insecurity. Nexleaf’s mission is to preserve human life and protect the planet by designing sensor technologies, generating data analytics, and advocating for data-driven solutions to global challenges. Nexleaf developed the IoT platforms, ColdTrace and StoveTrace, to help governments ensure the potency of life-saving vaccines at the ‘last mile’ and to facilitate the adoption of cleaner cookstoves

“Data is at the core of creating sustainable change. By getting meaningful, real-time data flowing from the bottom-up, people have the tools and insights they need to take responsive actions,” explained Martin Lukac, CTO and Co-founder of Nexleaf.

Data-driven Interventions

Many vaccines are temperature sensitive and must be kept between 2°C to 8°C or they lose their potency. In rural areas with unreliable power or outdated refrigerators, health workers don’t know if the vaccines they administer are safe. In close partnership with Ministries of Health, Nexleaf has deployed ColdTrace technologies to monitor and protect their vaccine supply. ColdTrace includes a remote temperature monitoring (RTM) device that gathers real-time temperature data from vaccine refrigerators and uploads that data to a cloud-based dashboard. The device automatically sends a message to nurses and health workers when the vaccines are in danger, prompting them to take action. With the customized data analytics Nexleaf provide, regional managers and the Ministry of Health have access to information that helps them take steps to strengthen their national immunization systems.

Nexleaf is also making innovative strides in the clean cooking sector using IoT. Every day, 3 billion people around the world rely on fires inside their homes to cook and provide light and heat. The resulting smoke contributes to climate change, and exposure to it has been linked to illnesses that cause 3.8 million people premature deaths per year. Women began to receive “improved” cookstoves (or clean cookstoves), which release far fewer emissions, but these interventions often failed. Nexleaf developed StoveTrace to monitor temperatures and usage of improved cookstoves. The sensor data led to the development of Sensor-enabled Climate Financing. Through this model, Nexleaf provides payments via climate funds to households who switch to cleaner cooking based on their usage.

Bridging the Infrastructure Gap

Part of what makes Nexleaf successful is their focus on designing solutions based on the needs of people at the front lines of global challenges and engaging them to work with data. Nexleaf’s solution, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), aggregates crucial data that leads to responsive interventions for all end users. In close partnership with governments and NGOs in 10 countries across Asia and Africa, Nexleaf ensures their solutions adhere to local country laws and preferences and identifies the tools and analytics that benefit governments and partners. Engaging people on the ground empowers them to use data to improve the efficiency of their systems, advocate for better resources, and tap into potential avenues for economic and social growth. Innovation and data can bridge the gap where infrastructure is lacking.

As Nexleaf scales their programs, AWS offers the reliability and global reach needed to help connect the poorest 3 billion people on Earth to solutions that work.

Don’t miss Nexleaf’s session at the upcoming AWS Public Sector Summit – Cloud Powered IoT: Connected Solutions Helping Communities.

To learn more about how AWS is supporting nonprofits and NGOs around the world, follow us on @AWSNonprofits.


For more content at the AWS Public Sector Summit, mark your calendar for our sponsor Infor’s The Next Revolution for Human Resources: Artificial Intelligence Beyond Bots.