Tuesday, June 22, 2010

India Innovation Summit- Day-1 Inaugural Session

The Sixth India Innovation Summit, supported by CII and Government of Karnataka was another confluence of thinkers and doers in the space of innovation. This has been one of the few events in India where a rich mix of youth and experience could be seen. With about 500 attendees, over 20 speakers and two days, the event lived up to its promise. Here's a quick summary of what transpired. For the event log, you can also visit Twitter (CII Summit archives, 140 char at a time, as my friend Hema likes to call it).

The session began after a 20 min delay with Aroon Raman (Chairman, CII Karnataka State Council) setting the context of what to expect from the Innovation Summit. He opined that innovation is one of the world's oldest professions and that it's inherent in human mind to search. The primary objective of innovation in the 21st century would be to address practical problems and have/ share real experiences. With this pretext, he welcomed all to make the most of the opportunity of interacting with a galaxy of stars on innovation and (un)learn.

It was followed by a brief talk by Kris (CEO, Infosys) on the four elements of development in India- Education, Employability, Innovation and Entrepreneurship. He maintained that with over 600,000 professionals working in the city and a very supportive government, Bangalore is fast emerging as not just an IT hub, but also as an Innovation Hub.

The key note of the session was from Ravi Venkatesan (Chairman, Microsoft India). Ravi identified the top technology priorities of Microsoft, viz: Cloud Computing, Natural User Interface; New Devices, Many Screens; and Democratic Access (to IT). Through a series of AVs, Ravi depicted the power each of these technologies possess, and how India is becoming the test lab for such disruptive technologies/ experiences. These include Microsoft Hohm, Windows MultiPoint Server, Medical Bayesian Server, and Project Natal, among others. He also said that, while for the past 20 years the government has allowed the industry to flourish in an untamed fashion, now it is the time for government to intervene and shape policy agenda to enable innovation.

The sentiments were echoed by Murugesh Rudrappa Nirani (Minister of Large and Medium Industries, Gov of Karnataka) as he highlighted the investment done around holistic development in the state. In all it was a very well received opening session.

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