As part of the recently launched ‘10,000 start-ups’ program, National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) organized ‘In Conversation with Vivek Wadhwa – A talk from Entrepreneur, Researcher and Innovation visionary Vivek Wadhwa – Director of research at Duke University and fellow at Stanford Law School.
The agenda of the session was to acquaint young Indian tech entrepreneurs with the disruptions that are taking place globally in the field of technology and how India startups can leverage these innovations to solve humanity’s grand challenges.
Emphasizing upon the need for India to re-invent itself from a nation of IT professionals to Technology Innovators, Wadhwa highlighted the massive opportunity that exists in solving problems related to Healthcare, Energy, Water, low cost information technology and additive manufacturing.
On the sidelines of the event, Mr. Vivek Wadhwa said, “Technology is advancing so rapidly that by the end of this decade, industries will be decimated and newer industries will emerge. There are many opportunities available for startups today to create tomorrow’s billion dollar businesses and to start solving some of humanity’s grand challenges. Today, India is at the verge of an Internet boom—greater than what the US experienced and there are many opportunities entrepreneurs can tap to solve big problems for India and the world.”
Wadhwa shared that while there is an air of pessimism in the developed world about the exploding problems of the world and the growing scarcity of resources, he felt confident due to some of the remarkable technological advancements made across the world which are not just restricted to the developed world but are also happening in emerging countries like Chile and India. He predicted that Healthcare is undergoing a tectonic shift and smartphones are poised to replace doctors for more than 80% of health related problems. Medicine is increasingly becoming digital and Indians have the opportunity to build apps and medical records for patients globally. He added that due to advancements in Genome sequencing which has drastically brought the costs down, in the next 20-30 years, medicines are going to be prescribed based on Genome which opens a floodgate of opportunities for software developers.
Wadhwa also said that 3D Printing is the next big thing and most large companies are today depending upon 3D Printing for their design projects. Indians today must explore the possibilities in 3D Printing and unlike the 70s or 80s, Indians today have the same information as entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley have thanks to the Internet.
When he was asked if starting a business is easier in Silicon Valley, Wadhwa said that US is undergoing a political turmoil and Indian entrepreneurs should stay in India given the sheer size of the market that Indian has to offer.
The session was attended by about 100 technology startup founders from New Delhi. NASSCOM commenced the 10,000 Start-ups with support of Google, Microsoft, Verisign and Kotak to support technology entrepreneurship in India. Zinnov is a consultancy partner with the program.