Indian Innovators traces the journey of 20 dynamic individuals, who have created cutting-edge products with global mass appeal. The innovators come from diverse backgrounds - from those who hold a PhD to those who have had no formal education! Despite the differences, what unites them is their passion for innovation, the grit with which they have fought adversities and their vision for a better world.
Each story celebrates the triumphant spirit of these determined individuals in a society that places little incentive on innovation. These brilliant innovators, with their determination and farsightedness, are fast breaking the status quo in the Indian innovation landscape.
Akshat Agrawal holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from IT-Delhi and an MBA from the US. During his IIT days, he was engaged in the design and fabrication of an artificial knee joint for above-the-knee amputees. Akshat is currently a Director at Alpha Beta Classes, an innovative start-up in online and offline education that aims to improve access to quality education for millions in India.
A discussion with an acquaintance in the US veered toward Indian engineers. My acquaintance stated that he respected Indian engineers, but didn’t believe that any significant product-oriented research was taking place in India. There were no path-breaking, scalable products with global appeal coming out of the country, he said.
Over a period of time, I have realized that he is not alone in that belief. Many others are also skeptical about India’s position on the innovation map of the world.
Undoubtedly, India lags behind several Western countries in innovation. According to the Global Innovation Index 2012, prepared by INSEAD in association with World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), India was ranked 64 among 141 nations surveyed. However, there is a growing tribe of men and women in the country who are devoted to product-oriented research with exemplary success.
In the process, they are also shattering the stereotypical image of Indian innovation, that of "jugaad’, that is, modify- ing or adapting Western technology to meet the demands of the price-sensitive local market.
Economic growth in a country usually leads to growth in innovation, as there is greater demand for better products and also greater competition to supply those products. As more players try to benefit from the existing opportunity, they are compelled to innovate in order to differentiate their products from those of their competitors.
Thus, economic growth leads to innovation and. innovation, in turn, leads to further economic growth.
Unfortunately, our society does not encourage creative thinking to the same extent as in the West. Choosing an unconventional path is less likely to be appreciated. This attitude inhibits the process of innovation in our country.
In order to foster an environment for innovation, it is extremely important to highlight the success stories of innovators. ‘This would help them garner much-needed attention and appreciation and also motivate the next generation to follow in their footsteps.
This book is a small effort in that direction. It chronicles the journey of a few innovators who toiled hard to make great products from scratch, despite facing greater challenges as compared to their western counterparts. This book is a celebration of their indomitable spirit.
The men and women featured in this book are from various parts of the country, belong to different age groups, have different educational backgrounds from PhD degrees to little formal education, and have worked in a variety of research areas. What unites them is their passion for what they are doing and their undying faith in their idea, despite numerous challenges. ‘They represent a facet of new India — the India that refuses to accept defeat and is hell-bent on proving its potential.
Their stories also provide useful insights into the process of innovation — the challenges involved and the institutional support available in the country.
This book is a salute to the spirit and willpower of these innovators, and it will surely bring about a change in the innovation landscape in India.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Item Code: NAS252 Author: Akshat Agrawal Cover: PAPERBACK Edition: 2018 Publisher: Jaico Publications ISBN: 9788184956597 Language: English Size: 8.00 X 5.00 inch Pages: 226 (21 B/W Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 0.18 Kg