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Eastern Europe: Innovation’s hidden hub


Francis Tapon is author of The Hidden Europe: What Eastern Europeans Can Teach Us. He spent the past three years traveling throughout Eastern Europe. He plans to spend three years traveling to all 54 countries in Africa.

I was struck by a simple innovation, while I was washing my dishes in Belarus. The kitchen cabinet, which was placed over the sink, had dish racks embedded into the cabinet itself. Because the cabinet had an open bottom, you could place the freshly washed (and dripping) dish directly into the cabinet. Water would drip through the opening on the bottom and land into the sink (or countertop). Because there’s no need for a separate dish rack, Belarusians gain extra counter space while saving themselves the tedious task of moving dry dishes from the dish rack onto the counter. It’s a clever solution for those without a dishwasher.

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