Anveshan is not just another design contest or hackathon. It is a program designed to bring out and support innovative engineering and business ideas that solve real world problems by enabling academic and industry partnership cited Sai Krishna Mopuri, Managing Director at Analog Devices India. Niloy Banerjee from BIS got alongside veteran Mopuri who further underline on ADI’s flagship Anveshan Fellowship program, this year’s focus and it has been the pinnacle in abridging industry-student gap and help propelling innovation for a better society and living. Edited Nub.
- How is the Anveshan program propelling the Indian Engineering Students Community?
Anveshan fellowship provides a platform for the Indian Engineering Students Community to pitch, develop and prototype their innovative engineering ideas. This is an outreach program open to the students of all engineering colleges across India. With technical and financial support from Analog Devices, students stand to gain from their interactions with the industry experts while still in their academic institutes. They gain access to Analog Devices’ products and tools which gives them ammunition to solve real-world problems using readily available technology from ADI, the global leader of analog, mixed signal and DSP integrated circuits.
- What differentiates the Anveshan Program from other fellowship programs?
Anveshan is not just another design contest or hackathon. It is a program designed to bring out and support innovative engineering and business ideas that solve real world problems by enabling academic and industry partnership. In this program students are paired with technical experts from Analog Devices to help review, refine and realize their ideas. Students are provided necessary technical tools and financial assistance during the fellowship. The students and the mentors work together collaboratively as a team. Students are encouraged to think ‘innovation with impact’ as opposed to ‘innovation in isolation’.
- How can an engineering student participate in this flagship fellowship program and what does he/she take back from this program?
If you are a student of any engineering college in India, you can participate in the Anveshan fellowship program by first identifying a problem in the areas suggested in Anveshan website, form a team with your fellow students, write and submit your project proposal on the Anveshan website. Once your proposal is selected for funding, you will be assigned a mentor or two to guide you as you develop your solution. The details of the fellowship program, submission procedures, guidelines and timelines are provided in the Anveshan website.
A participant in Anveshan gets the opportunity to put his/her academic learnings into practice. A student gains full circle of knowledge by combining the two half circles of knowledge, theoretical and practical. Working with experts from Analog Devices, students develop industry connections, get testimonials and recommendations, enhance chances of getting jobs or starting own ventures.
- There is a talent pool gap between the academics and the industry, how does Anveshan fill this gap?
Engineering design contests, product contests, hackathons, coding challenges, etc have multiple objectives and the important among them is to identify and reward distinguished talent. A true engineer is expected to possess not only theoretical knowledge but also know how to use that knowledge to solve real-world problems. While our education system needs sweeping changes to bridge the gap between academic and industry perspectives, programs such as Anveshan help in that direction albeit in a small way. By reaching out to the engineering institutes across the country, small and big, we try to provide equal opportunities to every engineering student of this country. Success of Anveshan comes from strong support, collaboration and cooperation from academic institutes and the student engineering community.
- How can Anveshan Design Fellowship play thought leadership initiative to encourage young minds
Anveshan encourages students to think of problems/ideas that have a social impact, to study existing solutions, and challenges them to prove the uniqueness of their solution. The screening process evaluates business potential, value capture, and strategic thinking in the submitted proposals. Experienced mentors guide the young innovators to identify techniques and tools to achieve an efficient and cost-effective solution, to identify and build a team that has right skillsets, to know their customer, to analyze business and go to market strategies, and so on. During the fellowship period, a young innovator is guided to think of his/her solution holistically from all aspects of engineering, business, and social impact.
- What has been the major focus of Anveshan 2019 and how many states/cities have participated this year?
Anveshan 2019 was about challenging the students to design the future which will have a societal impact for India. The main focus was to come up with innovative and smart solutions in Healthcare, Agriculture, Sustainable environment, Industrial automation, Renewable energy, and Smart transportation. This year, the students were also encouraged to design more around ADI platforms to bound the time to a successful Minimum Viable Product or MVP. Students from 12 States 35 cities participated in Anveshan 2019.
- Over the years, what kind of encouragement and involvement have you witnessed of engineering students in Anveshan?
In the first edition of Anveshan in 2012, we had participation from a few premier Engineering institutes. Over the last few years we have seen the participation surge and it is exciting to see entries from many parts of India, especially from colleges in tier2 cities and towns! The complexity of the problems that students choose to address has also seen a big leap. Students who have got the Anveshan exposure share their experience with their juniors leading to repeat entries from many colleges over the years.
- What are the different criteria’s under which the teams will be judged?
We look at multiple dimensions in evaluating the teams and their ideas. The criteria starts from the relevance of the problem chosen by the team, exploration of existing solutions, innovation and uniqueness of the proposed solution, impact of the idea on society and business, use of Analog Devices products and technology, effectiveness of the solution, completeness of the solution, minimum viable product or working prototype, how the team presented and demonstrated, and so on.
- How is the presence of ADI and its operations in the Indian market?
ADI has been in India since 1995. ADI’s engineering teams in India develop diverse technologies and products that provide signal processing solutions in multiple end markets including industrial, automotive, communications, consumer and healthcare. We design Digital, Analog and RF integrated circuits, develop software and systems to solve toughest engineering challenges for our customers. Our engineering teams have full product ownership and comprehensive capability to develop products from ideation to production. India has great engineering talent and ADI has successfully tapped into that talent over the years. ADI India is a key and strategic offshore facility for Analog Devices.
- Lastly, you being a tech-honcho what are your golden words for the budding engineers and the Engineering community of India?
As an engineering professional with over 25 years’ experience in global semiconductor industry, I see bright future for India semiconductor industry. The future of India tech industry depends primarily on the student talent and attitude. My advice to the budding engineers is to stay focused on learning and develop deep technical expertise, especially in the formative years of your career. Attitude and approach to innovation is very important. Keep up with fast paced technology trends and never stop learning. Be a student forever, be inquisitive, be open and flexible. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes but own up to them and learn from them. India got the most precious asset – the people with great engineering talent. As an engineering community, we need to challenge ourselves to move up in value stack and provide strong technology & global leadership. This is a good time to be in the technology sector as we see strong growth and great prospects for Indian and multi-national technology companies.