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IMPHORAA Project Q+A: Heidi Dyson

Wed, 17 January, 2024

TWI is well-known for ground-breaking and innovative work across industry, but they also take on projects that have a direct positive social impact on communities around the world.

We took some time to speak with TWI’s Project and Contracts Management Group Manager, Heidi Dyson to find out more about this work, with a particular focus on the IMPHORAA project.

Can you start by telling us a bit about yourself and your role at TWI?

I am the Group Manager for Project and Contracts Management (PCM) under the Membership, Innovation and Global Operations (MIGO) Directorate. My current role oversees the management of tenders and contracts of the UK group and our international subsidiaries. PCM also project manages its own portfolio of projects, mostly focusing on dissemination and exploitation of projects with impact to innovation and society.

TWI is well known for working to assist industry in solving challenges, but they have also been involved in projects that have a direct positive social impact – can you tell us more about why this work is important?

I believe that every technology developed in this day and age must serve society regardless of whether they are paid for by public funding or not. The gifted technologists and scientists must have the improvement of life for the people of the world as their focus to make their contribution matter.

You have recently been involved in the IMPHORAA project – can you tell us about this project and why it is particularly close to your heart?

IMPHORAA is a highly impactful project that our team has recently been involved in, and it holds special significance for me personally.

Not only has it marked a significant milestone for our group as it is the first one with such a profound social impact, but also it is particularly close to my heart because it has a direct impact on the Philippines, one of the target countries, which is my home country.

Our team is fully committed to the success of IMPHORAA, recognising its potential to bring about significant positive change and make a difference in the lives of people in the Philippines. We are excited about the opportunity to leverage our skills and expertise to address crucial issues and contribute to the betterment of the communities both in the Philippines and Madagascar.

IMPHORAA represents more than just a professional engagement for us; it embodies a commitment to social impact and sustainable development, making our contributions even more meaningful. We look forward to seeing the positive outcomes of this project and the lasting benefits it can bring to the communities we aim to serve.

What impact is IMPHORAA having on the day-to-day lives of local communities?

IMPHORAA is designed to have a transformative effect on the ground, aiming to bring about positive changes in various aspects of community life.

One of the key impacts is in the realm of sustainable energy access. By implementing innovative solutions both on the technological front as well as the organisational, IMPHORAA strives to enhance access to reliable and clean energy sources within local communities. This not only improves the quality of life for residents but also contributes to environmental sustainability.

Most importantly, one of IMPHORAA’s main pillars is about active community engagement and capacity-building. Working collaboratively with the locals, the project empowers micro-entrepreneurship within communities providing the knowledge and skills needed to sustainably manage and benefit from the implemented solutions. This includes educational programmes, training sessions, and other capacity-building activities.

This active involvement of the local communities, creates a multiplying effect on new economic opportunities. For example, our decision to introduce freezers on the island was aimed at preserving the daily wet catches of the fishermen. Little did we anticipate that this initiative would also lay the foundation for a thriving ice lolly business, produced from the abundant fruits of the island. These ice lollies have become highly sought after as a refreshing way to combat the heat of the tropical weather.

Another example is that embarking on the mission to bring light to the island, our primary goal was to provide a solution for the community's basic needs. We never anticipated the extent of interest it would generate among neighbouring communities. The initiative, which marked the first-time provision of night-time illumination on the island, not only met the local demand but also captured the attention of nearby communities. Their keen interest and positive reception have spurred discussions about extending the benefits of this lighting project beyond our island borders.

By promoting sustainable practices and technologies, IMPHORAA seeks to stimulate local economies and create job opportunities, thereby contributing to the socio-economic development of the communities involved, and especially women.

It's important to note that the impact of such projects is multifaceted and evolves over time. As we continue to work closely with local communities, we keep monitoring and assessing the outcomes to ensure that IMPHORAA’s outputs are making the maximum positive and lasting difference in the day-to-day lives of the people it aims to serve.

How can others enlist the help of TWI for their own projects and help change lives for the better?

At TWI, we welcome collaboration on initiatives that align with our mission of creating positive change and improving lives. We are also open to exploring new partnerships that contribute to positive social impact and we look forward to hearing more about your project and how we can potentially support with our unique expertise.

The first step is to reach out to us directly. You can contact our team through our official website or by connecting with our relevant departments (email: Provide an overview of your project, its goals, and how you believe TWI's expertise and resources can contribute.

We'll work with you to conduct a needs assessment to better understand the specific requirements and challenges of your project. This will help us tailor our expertise and resources to effectively address the identified needs, leveraging our strengths and capabilities.


Heidi Dyson
Heidi Dyson


This project is supported by Innovate UKs Energy Catalyst Programme (funding by the Foreign, Commonwealth Development Office through their Transforming Energy Access Programme) and UK aid and was awarded as a “subsidy” under the UK International Obligations for Subsidy Control and delivered under Grant 90935 from Innovate UK