Teachers Learn about Entrepreneurship at INV.ENT Workshop of IIT Bombay
More than 30 teachers and innovation / incubation centre managers, as well as government officials and a few aspiring entrepreneurs gathered at IIT Bombay on 31st January 2020 to learn how to build innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem in academic institutes. They came from North Maharashtra University Jalgaon, College of Engineering Pune, IET Agra, SIES College of Arts, Science and Commerce Sion, Don Bosco Institute of Technology, Terna Engineering College, WE School, KJSIMSR, Sasmira’s IMR, Parle Tilak Institute of Management and other colleges. Participants represented various streams including Arts, Science, Commerce, Engineering and Management. The government was represented by Maharashtra State Innovation Society (MSInS).
The workshop, titled ‘INV.ENT 2020 – Innovation and Entrepreneurship Education’ was organized by Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship of IIT Bombay. “The School fosters a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship in the Institute. We offer courses leading to B.Tech Minor in Entrepreneurship, as well as mentoring, networking and support to aspiring students for incubating start-up companies. More than 2000 students have taken these courses so far, and 30 start-ups have been incubated in a variety of fields such as agri-tech, healthcare, logistics and water management.” said Prof. Anand Kusre, who founded the School in 2014, supported by a generous donation from IITB alumni Bharat Desai and his wife Neerja Sethi, both founders of Syntel, USA.
The workshop had a mix of speakers from academia, industry and government. Prof. Milind Atrey, Dean-R&D, gave an overview of translational research at IIT Bombay. He mentioned that more than 1000 patents have been filed so far by IITB researchers, and many of them have been licensed to start-ups or industry, creating over 4000 high-value jobs. Prof. Rohan Chinchwadkar shared key elements of business finance. Mr. Shijo Varghese from MSInS mentioned various initiatives of Maharashtra government, such as purchase orders to start-up companies through the Start-up Week competition.
Three senior experts from industry who are adjunct or visiting faculty at DS School of Entrepreneurship provided a glimpse of their courses. Nishant Bhaskar (Co-Founder, Lomads) mentioned how the focus of design has evolved from product in the 1970s, to user interface in 1990s to context in the 2000s. Devdip Purkayastha (President, Enactus India) shared key elements of marketing for entrepreneurs, including various driving factors from physiological needs to self-actuation. Salil Donde (MD, Managing Director for Sterling Atlantic Partners), who teaches technology venture creation, said, “The key goal of start-ups should be to enter the market with a minimum viable product, and then to scale consistently.”
Dr. Aparna Rao, overall coordinator, said, “The workshop was meant to connect with institutes who have set up or planning to set up Entrepreneurship Cells and Centres, for sharing best practices and planning joint initiatives.”
In the final feedback session chaired by Prof. B. Ravi, current head of Desai Sethi School of Entrepreneurship and founder of BETiC- Biomedical Engineering and Technology incubation Centre, IIT-B , the participants appreciated the rich and deep eco-system of IIT Bombay and mentioned that the workshop was an eye-opener in terms of the topics that need to be covered in training aspiring entrepreneurs.
The workshop was held as a prequel to E-Summit, on 1st and 2nd February 2020.