August 18, 2011
School of Business, Bengaluru
“India and China are are expected to replace the Western countries on the economic front. Focus is now shifting to Asia and competition is on the rise. The West is facing a crisis of aging populations and shrinking economies. On the other hand, 20% of the world’s teenagers now reside in India.”
Abhirami Nambiar, Vijay Nagarajan, Vishak V., Preethi L. and Radhika Pillai, all second-year students of MBA-MS, learned these facts and more, while participating in the CII Innovation Forum last month at IIM Bangalore.
Their participation in the event was marked by interactions with distinguished delegates including Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, CEO and Managing Director, Infosys Technologies Ltd.; Dr. Anil Menon, President, Globalization and Smart Connected Communities, Cisco Systems Inc; and Ms. Meena Ganesh, CEO & MD, Pearson Education Services.
The speakers emphasized the importance of technology-driven innovations for sustainable living in Indian cities. “In the future, technology and innovation will differentiate between countries,” they noted.
“Technological advancements in long distance learning will enable the further rise of the Indian economy.”
New educational programs were showcased that will provide students with a one-on-one learning experience through the Internet. As a result, teachers, many of them women, can impart knowledge working from their homes and still reach out to rural children in all parts of India.
“Children of poor famers and daily wage earners exhibit tremendous dedication and drive to learn,” emphasized Ms. Meena Ganesh, speaking from her personal experiences with them.
In response to a question from Amrita student Radhika Pillai, she added, “The basic requirement for any teacher (in the rural areas) would be basic computer operation. As far as students are concerned, it will provide a whole new dimension of learning.”
Another question posed to Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan brought forth an interesting reply.
“Innovation requires an inter-disciplinary approach, and one needs to understand the market well for sustainable and successful growth. As far as innovation is concerned, working in silos will not be of much use.”
“The event was a unique learning experience for us as future managers, wanting to make it big in the corporate world,” shared Amrita student Abhirami Nambiar. “One key thing we all learned from the eminent speakers was the necessity to conduct oneself with simplicity and humility in order to reach greater heights.”
“The forum was extremely inspiring and it kept us all pondering on ways to manage innovation as the next step for emerging economies.”