IIT Delhi Launches Grassroots Innovation Programme (GRIP) To Find Solutions For Societal Problems
The programme launched by Principal Scientific Advisor (PSA) to the Government of India, Professor K Vijay Raghavan on Monday seeks to work on finding solutions to grassroots societal problems identified by the students from rural and semi-urban areas, including the communities they come from.
The Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi) has introduced ‘Grassroots Innovation Programme (GRIP)’. The programme launched by Principal Scientific Advisor (PSA) to the Government of India, Professor K Vijay Raghavan on Monday seeks to work on finding solutions to grassroots societal problems identified by the students from rural and semi-urban areas, including the communities they come from.
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Lauding the initiative launched the Principal Scientific Advisor expressed hope that GRIP will result in development of several innovative solutions for the society.
As part of the programme, a group of students will visit communities located in smaller towns and villages to immerse in social environments for a substantial time (one week to months) to study, understand and identify local needs and challenges, which can possibly be addressed by the students when they return to the Institute campus, an IIT Delhi statement said.
“The immersion programme provides an opportunity for students to put themselves in the shoes of end users and to co-create solutions which are likely to succeed. This programme also acts as a pipeline of ideas, which students and student teams can address as a part of semester-long design and innovation courses already available to them,” said Prof PVM Rao Head, Department of Design, IIT Delhi who is coordinating the GRIP initiative.
After identifying the local needs and challenges, students and student teams will be allowed to work on semester-long or year-long projects on finding novel solutions to grassroots problems identified by them.
The GRIP initiative, the official statement said, will provide physical, intellectual, and financial resources to the students to carry out these projects. To identify and find solutions, existing courses and schemes of the institute will be leveraged. This way students will have an opportunity to earn academic credits for their efforts.
The programme can synergize with other programmes of the Institute, which include UBA, RUTAG, NSS, ENACTUS etc.
“There are many students who have shown interest in addressing the unmet needs in their own neighbourhoods. Further, students are enthusiastic to participate in proposing and validating novel solutions that respond to the local situation and the interests and values of the communities involved. The GRIP initiative is aimed at providing resources to the students who want to help the society by solving its problems,” said Professor V Ramgopal Rao, Director, IIT Delhi said.
IIT Delhi and Honey Bee Network (HBN), a volunteer based network that seeks innovative ideas and traditional knowledge produced at the grassroots level by individuals and communities and disseminates them to the wider ecosystem, have joined hands to groom students as torchbearers of social and grassroots innovation through GRIP programme, the IIT statement added.