I wrote this series four years ago: “India Empowered to me means India Educated, Infrastructure Everywhere, Innovation Ecosystem, Imaginative Entrepreneurs, Intelligent Enterprises, Internet Energised and Increasing Expectations.”
I expanded on each of the themes. This is what I wrote on what the twin themes of Innovation Ecosystem and Imaginative Entrepreneurs.
Innovation Ecosystem: We will need to think out-of-the-box to come up with smart solutions. For that, we need to build an innovation ecosystem – combining the best minds across academia, industry and government. We need to work on ideas across the board, starting with education, energy, healthcare. We need solutions that are scalable rapidly. We need to foster a culture of innovation so that India can lead the world in key areas – use of solar energy as an alternate to fossil fuels is one example. To make this happen, we need to make our universities hubs for cutting-edge research. We need venture capital funds so that the better of these ideas can be commercialised rapidly. We will have failures, but the impact of the successes will far outweigh the downside of the projects that do not work.
Imaginative Entrepreneurs: We not only need more entrepreneurs, we need them to come up with big vision. We need entrepreneurs who are willing to run the risk of failure – so that they can change the game dramatically with their disruptive innovations. We need entrepreneurs who are not satisfied with building a small, profitable company but are willing to make big bets on building big enterprises. To take an example: what does it take for us in India to build the Google for Emerging Markets – build around tomorrow’s world of network computers, mobile phones and broadband networks and centralized services. We need to think of the future not as what others create but as an instantiation of someone’s vision. Can we make it our vision?