Can there be indigenous innovation from rural India?

“The important thing in science is not so much to obtain new facts as to discover new ways of thinking about them.”

― Sir William Bragg

In an era of increasing investment in modern technology, Krishna Thiruvengadam, an engineer and innovator from Tamil Nadu, takes an initiative to work towards it, reminding us that little drops of water make a mighty ocean. Inspired by his experience at the National Innovation Foundation (NIF), decides to nurture young minds and encourage divergent thinking. His educative journey began with the SBI Youth for India Fellowship which gave him the opportunity to work on rural development projects. As he gained field experience he realised that sustainable innovations were possible only if the rural communities themselves generated ideas and solutions, using locally accessible materials so that they could be self-sufficient.

“I understood that if I’m going to trigger a child to think, then it’s also going to affect the family and the entire system/village” says Krishna

He realised that for change to be possible, it had to be initiated at the grassroots level. “I understood that if I’m going to trigger a child to think, then it’s also going to affect the family and the entire system/village” says Krishna. Armed with this indigenous approach and the design thinking process he stepped into the tribal village of Lobhi in Maharashtra. What transpired between him and the village children is a fascinating story.

From using cartoons as icebreakers to car races, model building, and puzzle games that make physics fun, he gave power to their quotidian prototypes and impetus to their curious, innovative minds.

Krishna’s narrative is a testament to educators worldwide that the spirit of true education lies in mutual sharing of knowledge, encouraging kids to trust their intuition, and allowing them to explore creative spaces for real learning to take place.

Play away to know about this journey from the man himself!

Show notes