Business incubators at IIM Kozhikode and NID Ahmedabad collaborate to combine design thinking and design experience for start-ups

Kozhikode: Laboratory for Innovation, Venturing and Entrepreneurship (LIVE) at the premier Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Kozhikode signed an MoU with National Design Business Incubator (NDBI) of National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, recently. The MoU brings two institutes of national importance in two diverse domains – design and management – together to collaborate and create offerings that may boost innovation and venture support ecosystem in the country.

This is the first time in India that a business incubator hosted at a business school has struck an alliance with another one at a design school. This may further encourage diverse stakeholders to connect with each other to create a more vibrant startup ecosystem needed for superior innovations and successful new ventures.

Announcing the strategic tie-up, Professor Debashis Chatterjee, Director of IIM Kozhikode, said, “IIM Kozhikode has always emphasized the importance of liberal arts in businesses. Innovation is not just about technology, the aesthetics of the solution is equally critical for the new product success.” Adding further he said, “In countries like India, technology and arts have largely existed in isolation. Through this collaborative initiative of the two business incubators, the new age entrepreneurs would be sensitized to combine them for bringing innovative products and solutions that benefit the society”.

Elaborating further Professor Keyoor Purani, Executive Director, IIMK LIVE, said “In our experience, we find that the startups, generally, undermine the role of visual and functional aesthetics, as science and technology have been traditionally overwhelming in new product development process. Indian startups particularly need to realize how both design thinking and design experience play significant role in developing and launching successful solutions. Under the MoU, a series of interventions are being chalked out to leverage strengths of the respective host institutes”.

Joint workshops, publications, resource sharing, co-incubation, task-based mentoring are some of the areas that the tie-up is likely to facilitate. Not only start-ups incubated at the respective incubators at IIMK and NID would benefit from this, but other start-ups in greater ecosystems too would be impacted.