We led a series of workshops with government and community representatives in Grenada to identify requirements for native mobile app technology, which would help Caribbean Island communities better prepare for and recover from hazards and disasters with ecosystem-based adaptation interventions. The workshop was coupled with a previous survey to stakeholders from all three countries (Grenada, Jamaica, and Dominican Republic) to gather preliminary feedback on EbA science, data and technology needs. As a result of feedback gained from these workshops, surveys and interviews, the Global Oceans team proposed that a native mobile app is needed for Resilient Islands in order to reach our goals. This app will promote an EbA program in the Caribbean, be used for fundraising, and it will integrate social-ecological data with flood risk while identifying nature-based adaptation solutions. 

My Role 

My role included leading the different exercises such as a vision exercises and ad-hock persona creation during the workshop in Grenada and I also led a few user interviews. I continued to research and identify the potential features of the app (informed by our research work) and represented those ideas in wireframe form.
Research and Discovery Workshops

A series of workshops were conducted in Grenada to identify requirements for native mobile apps to help Caribbean Island communities better prepare for and recover from hazards and disasters with ecosystem-based adaptations. The team comprised of TNC and ARC representatives from across the Eastern Caribbean and our SpatialDev team who met with government representatives and members of coast communities to set goals for a mobile app, identify target users and define priority features.

Government Stakeholders 
The first meeting with government stakeholders was hosted by the American Red Cross and covered the processes in place to evaluate vulnerabilities and capacities before prescribing ecosystem-based solutions. They were then briefed on the mobile app assessment process and given an overview of the existing Red Cross Hazards mobile app. The stakeholder group were very supportive/excited by our ideas and provided encouragement and validation for the team to develop a mobile app that provides value and directly impacts the community .

Presentation of VCA processes to Government Stakeholders

Team Requirements Development Workshop 
The combined TNC and ARC team spent the day working through several exercises that I designed to elicit software requirements. The first exercise, called a Vision Board, established the scope for the mobile app at a conceptual level. The group split into 4 groups and discussed the vision, target groups, their needs, product attributes and ultimate goals. After small group discussion, the group reconvened with report outs and consolidation.

Vision Board

A second exercise elaborated on the target groups and defined them down to user personas. Each persona provides a detailed profile for specific user types including their demographics, competencies and typical information needs and habits. A total of 8 personas were created. The group then prioritized the personas to identify which would be the focus for the app.

Breakout group session to create user personas

The priority personas were used to elaborate user needs down to specific features, which were described on color-coded post-it notes to keep track of which feature was addressed what user need. This distinction was maintained in order that feature priorities would be reflective of the priority users. Once a comprehensive set of features were written, they were grouped into classes. The primary resulting classes were as follows: Map, Training & Advice, Alerts & Notifications, Submissions, Incentives and Usability & Accessibility. The last step in the workshop involved voting by the participants using sticker dots to capture feature priorities.

Grouped, prioritized and ranked features

Community Workshop
The third day of workshopping started off with a review of the prior day’s work and preparations for the community workshop in Grenville. The team started with a field trip to several sites in the Grenville area including the site where a fisherperson facility (boat launch and catch cleaning stations) will soon be constructed and then to an area of mangrove plantings. The field trip also brought us a glimpse of the serious erosion occurring in the area and presented a stark image of the vulnerability the communities live under. 

Mangrove planting site, Grenada

The day ended with a community meeting which included several active fisherfolk. The meeting served as an opportunity to validate feature priorities; collect additional ideas, and learn how mobile devices and apps are being used. We heard a number of informative new ideas and found that the community is already steeped in using mobile to communicate and access information.

Discussions with community representatives

Features and Ideation

When we got back from the workshop, we were able to consolidate all the feedback and we created a priority features list in Trello with more specifics. As a result of the workshop, interviews, personas and field trip, I started ideation and information architecture in the form of wireframes.  

Mobile app feature backlog in Trello

Back to Top