United Nations Development Programme
The objective of the assignment by UNDP was to first understand the skill levels of the Borpeta cluster of bamboo artisans and design new products, thereby, creating new markets.
Borpeta was a predominantly migrant populace, dotted with semi-skilled artisans who made products for the tourist markets. The products were mostly made from small strips of bamboo and are usually decorative pieces that have a limited market.
The approach to design was two-fold: to remove drudgery and create utility products, instead of decorative ones.
Instead of splitting bamboo into thin strips, half-sections or whole sections of bamboo were used. This helped in saving time, effort and costs. New products were designed for the hotel and hospitality sector, including trays, trivets, fruit bowls, cutlery stands and bathroom accessories. Products were also designed for desk-top use in offices. These include paper trays and pencil holders.
The project was successful in creating new markets for mainstream products in bamboo and helped in developing the livelihoods of artisans.
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Location : Borpeta, Assam