Launching, Scaling Global Health Innovations Next WDI Talk Topic

Friday, January 6, 2017

(Update: Please watch Milestone’s presentation and the discussion here and check out an interview with Ravi Anupindi, the David B. Hermelin Professor of Business Administration & Professor of Operations Management at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. He is also the Program Director for the Master of Supply Chain Management Program and a member of WDI’s Board of Directors).

WDI’s Global Impact Speaker Series continues with a Jan. 18 interactive discussion exploring new ways for global health practitioners to harness business-oriented models for launching and scaling innovations in emerging markets.

David Milestone, deputy director of the U.S. Agency for International Department’s Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact (CII), spoke about “Ready, Set, Launch: A Country-Level Launch Planning Guide for Global Health Innovations.”  

The new guide (which was featured in a recent post on, an affiliate of WDI) aims to help practitioners capably pivot from developing a product to launching it by prioritizing countries, while building a strategy and plan for its implementation. The guide also includes exercises and frameworks, and real-world examples, anecdotes and case studies of lessons learned by practitioners in the field.

“Ready, Set, Launch” follows two other publications produced for CII’s IDEA to IMPACT Series – “Pathways to Scale: A Guide on Business Models and Partnership Approaches” and  “IDEA to Impact: A Guide to Introduction and Scale of Global Health Innovations.” (Milestone spoke with NextBillion in 2015 about the “Introduction and Scale” guide.) The publications are roadmaps to help health practitioners apply business principles to their work around the world to speed up development, introduction, scale and impact of health interventions.

CII, part of USAID’s Global Health Bureau, discovers promising health ideas, provides funding and uses business-oriented methods to bring them to the marketplace as quickly as possible. To accomplish this, the center researches past successes and failures of health interventions to find best practices, encourages innovation by sponsoring grand challenges and hackathons to solve challenges and supports plans to reach scale with financing, market shaping and engagement with the private sector.

Before joining USAID, Milestone held a number of strategic marketing roles at the medical device company Stryker. Before that, he was a management consultant with A.T. Kearney in New York providing guidance to Fortune 500 companies on strategy and operations.

Milestone has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, an MS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University, and a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


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