With 1.35 billion human brains, India can be key player in DeepTech: Dave Richards, Co-founder, Innovation Lab, MIT

New Delhi: Dr Dave Richards, Co-founder, Innovation Lab, MIT and Board Member, India Research Centre, today said that India with its 1.35 billion human brains can be a major player in DeepTech if it takes the right steps and not miss the huge opportunity.

Speaking at FICCI’s 92nd Annual Convention on the theme ‘India: Roadmap to a $5 Trillion Economy’, Dr Richards said that India needs to invest in its children and young people giving them the right skills needed for the future and be cautious that the country does not become complacent.

“India has a golden opportunity to be a major player in DeepTech, building on the fact that you have millions of tech-savvy young people, and a huge number of the world’s most precious resource – 1.35 billion human brains,” he said at a special plenary moderated by Mr Rajiv Makhni, Managing Editor, Technology, NDTV.

Dr Richards said the country is at strategic crossroads and one path could lead to true greatness and a $5 trillion economy, and the other path could lead to stagnation and perhaps even decline.

“Unfortunately, India can become a victim of DeepTech. AI and automation will happen, and many low-level jobs in accounting, law and customer service call centres will be automated,” he flagged.

However, DeepTech should not be about driving people out of employment. Instead, it should be about improving the lives of people, customers and those who deliver value to customers, he said.

“If India doesn’t seize the opportunity to properly develop your people to meet the new age, DeepTech opportunities, others will. China, Eastern Europe, even places that aren’t yet significant technology players like South America, can and will step up,” Dr Richards said.

Further, he said for India to grow to a $5 trillion economy, it must create many brands and products that customers here and worldwide will love and want to engage with.

“To achieve this, India needs an empowered workforce, with the right education, life skills and personal qualities required to be effective in relationship with customers and other employees,” he added.