One year at GAIN
It is roughly one year since I joined GAIN, the Global Adaptation Institute. GAIN is dedicated to facilitate data-driven pragmatic solutions to face the challenge of adaptation to climate change. You can learn more about us here, or about my role here.
One year seems a nice excuse to stop and think about what one has done and evaluate where to improve. I am very thankful to the Institute for giving the opportunity to work on such an important topic and amazing people. I think we have lots to celebrate and be proud of. Motivation has been and is the main engine for this journey.
In the last year:
- We were able to scram the first versions of the Index in roughly two weeks. We used many tools and concepts I already knew, but also some I had to learn quickly. I´m particularly proud of our use of several tools like Google Docs, or Refine.
- Despite the distance and teleworking from Europe, we were able to produce all the background analysis, documentation and infographics to present a complete draft early March.
- During April we were able to continue the iteration of the building process and consultation over several weeks with the highest standards, still with some heavy teleworking from Europe, shifting tools as we saw fit ( e.g. adopting the de-facto standard Excel VBA) and keeping on schedule for our event in May.
- Summer came up quite busy implementing those changes and preparing the Index and all the side work: Number crunching, tests, documentation, response to feedback, ... my visa got ready and I could finally relocate to DC.
- August saw a significant ramping up as we interacted with Development Seed to build, in record time, the website for the Index. The awesome technology we used, Node.js involved considerable interfacing to bring everybody to the same page and avoid any delays. We built in record time, and we still are years ahead of most data portals.
- September was the culmination as we had to freeze development to be able to produce the Gain 2011 numbers.
- From October till the end of the year we had a bit of needed slack to round some corners, and properly build a great main site. We use Jekyll+Tumblr as our web engines, and Github for website hosting and track issues with the Index. Among other things allows non-synchronous collaboration. We also did the roll out the Index with presentations to many institutions and places. Just to name a few we gave talks at: OEA, World Bank, Brookings, Carnegie, US German Marshal Fund, UNFCC COP17 South Africa, NY Science Academy, Rockefeller Fundation, Tecnológico de Monterrey, ...
- This year we continue polishing our technology strategy, and developing better science, continuing the due diligence and preparing the pipeline to make Gain 2012. This is in what I´m currently focusing on, and I´m loving it. Keep tuned, there is some great stuff coming up.
I am very thankful to the Institute for giving the opportunity to work on such an important topic and amazing people. I think we have lots to celebrate and be proud of. Motivation has been and is the main engine for this journey.