IIT 2008 Global Alumni Conference - Innovation
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innovationTataFocusing on Innovation as a major milestone in India's road ahead, fostering innovation in the academic environment, in business & technology, in fine arts and the transition from innovation to entrepreneurship to enterprise will be the main topics.

Here are the three Sessions within this track, and the speakers and panelists involved.

Session I: Innovation & Entrepreneurship
Session II: Innovation in Media and Creative Arts
Session III: Innovation Ecosystem

Session I: Innovation & Entrepreneurship


This session bridges between the Innovation and Entrepreneurship tracks. It deals with innovation in the context of how it leads to entrepreneurship, and how this can be facilitated.
Lead Questions
Venue: Central Lecture Theatre (CLT), IIT Madras
Time: Friday, Dec 19th, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Chair Person

Prof. L. S. Ganesh
Professor, Department of Management Studies, IIT Madras.


Gunjan Bagla
Managing Director of Amritt, Inc.

Key Note Speakers

Dr. M. S. Krishnan
Professor, Business Information Technology, U Michigan.
R. Subramanian
CEO, Subhiksha.


Raj Shah
Engineering Director, Google.
Rathindra Roy
Development Consultant, UN.
Arun Sharma
COO, L-RAMP; Rural Innovations Network.
Murugavel Janakiraman
Founder & CEO, bharatmatrimony.com.
Gill Eapen
Founder & Managing Principal, Decision Options LLC.
Anuradha Acharya
Founder & CEO, Ocimum Biosolutions.
Rajeev Srinivasan
Professor, IIMB.

Session II: Innovation in Media and Creative Arts


From Innovation as a synonym for Creativity, the pendulum has swung to Innovation as a synonym for Business & Technology. But the 'Experience Economy' demands a focus on creativity and people, along with business and technology. The panel will share their experiences and their thoughts on Innovation in Media and Creative arts, as well as on Media and Creativity for Innovation. With December also being Music Season in Chennai, renowned musicians being a part of the panel is our way of saluting this season which has become an integral part of Chennai life.
  • Keen connection of close connection between innovation and creative arts
  • How can PANIIT take inspiration from this to deliver some of the missions being undertaken?
Venue: Central Lecture Theatre, IIT Madras.
Time: Saturday, Dec 20th, 11:45 a.m. - 1:45 p.m.

Chair Person and Moderator

Vaidya Nathan
Asst. Vice President and Head-Global Innovation Office, Cognizant Technology Solutions.


Bombay Jayashri
A professional concert artist and Carnatic musician of International acclaim, she is reflective of many dimensions of the music and bring it to manifest. Her book 'Voices Within' (co-authored with TM Krishna) reflects on 7 legendary Carnatic musicians and their innovation in making the music accessible to the people while preserving its integrity. Inspired by the book, she is the co-designer and presenter of 'Voices Within Business Creativity Workshop'. She is also the co-founder of Matrka, a foundation to serve as a new platform to present Carnatic Music. (www.BombayJayashri.com)
TM Krishna
TM KrishnaLeading Carnatic musician, performer, teacher, composer and researcher, he is the co-author of 'Voices Within' and co-designer and presenter of 'Voices Within Business Creativity Workshop'. He has founded and runs organizations devoted to research and documentation of ancient traditions of Carnatic music. He is co-founder of Matrka along with Bombay Jayashree. (www.tmkrishna.com)
'Kanniks' Kannikeswaran
'Kanniks' KannikeswaranKanniks Kannikeswaran is a rare visionary musician, composer, music educator and writer with several recordings, productions and scores to his credit. With specialty in complex features of diverse World music forms, his creative work draws upon his technical skills and his strong background in Indian culture and music traditions. All of his projects are consistent with his vision of building community through the celebration of threads of commonality between diverse peoples and cultures.

Kanniks has also done path breaking work in bringing the legacy of the little known genre of nottusvara sahityas (music based on popular western melodies of the Colonial period) of master composer Muthusvami Dikshitar to the world community in a highly acclaimed recording featuring Indian voices and Celtic accompaniment.

Kanniks magnum opus 'Shanti A Journey of Peace' a powerful oratorio of ragas made history by bringing together a community choir of over 150 singers of both Indian and western origin in the Cincinnati community, in a spectacular performance and paved way for the re-creation of yet another such diverse choir in the Lehigh valley area. Kanniks has collaborated with musicians such as Lakshmi Shankar and his work has been performed by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra.

Kanniks' Raaga Vidya workshops where he powerfully shares the wealth of Indian music through pattern recognition exercises as well as examples from contemporary music are a great draw amongst the diaspora. An IITM alumnus (1984), Kanniks (www.kanniks.com) is a compelling and consummate innovator in the field of music. Kanniks lives in Cincinnati Ohio where he also works as a Business Intelligence Consultant.

SowmyaA professional Carnatic musician with great love for that music tradition, Sowmya is known for constant lookout for innovative opportunities to further the access and reach of Carnatic music. An IITM alumnus of distinction she is the co-founder of Carnatica and co-creator of "Nadopasana", the world's first self-help Carnatic music guru. (www.carnatica.net/sowmya)
Chetan Bhagat
An IITD and IIMA alumnus, Chetan is a curious personality spanning Academics, Investment banking, book(s) author, screenplays, etc., a real embodiment the spirit of Indian Youth. (www.chetanbhagat.com)
Anu Hassan
Anu HassanTV Anchor and movie actress, she is the host of acclaimed celebrity talk show 'Koffee with Anu'. But then with an interesting background of dual-degree in MSc and Management from BITS Pilani, martial arts expert, sportswomen and Jazz musician. She is also the niece of Tamil actor Kamal Hassan.
Ranjit Makkuni
Ranjit MakkuniA multi-media visionary, designer and president of Sacred World Foundation, an innovative design think tank. An alumnus of IITKgp, he has a very colorful background. He was a researcher at Xerox PARK, part of the team that created GUI, and most of the computing innovations that created the digital media revolution. Working on designs that build bridges between techno and traditional cultures, he is also an acclaimed and active Sitar player. (www.sacredworld.com)

Session III: Innovation Ecosystem


In today's world, there is an increasing trend of moving innovation beyond any kind of borders - reflected in collaborative, open innovation models. Today it is important for an organisation - whether a business, institution, a government, or an NGO - to look beyond itself, and innovate across its ecosystem. The big question for any organisation therefore is - how to create and sustain an innovation ecosystem for itself?
Venue: Central Lecture Theatre (CLT), IIT Madras.
Time: Saturday, Dec 20th, 2:15 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.

Chair Person

Alka Puri
Associate Consultant, Erehwon Innovation Consulting.

Key Note Speakers

Gururaj (Desh) Deshpande
Gururaj Deshpande is the Chairman of Sycamore Networks, Tejas Networks, A123 Systems, Sandstone Capital and HiveFire. He is a founding investor and Board member of Airvana. Prior to co-founding Sycamore Networks, Dr. Deshpande was founder and chairman of Cascade Communications Corp.

Dr. Deshpande serves as a member of the MIT Corporation, and his generous donations have made possible MIT's Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation. Dr. Deshpande holds a B.Tech. in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology - Madras, an M.E. in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Brunswick in Canada, and Ph.D. in Data Communications from Queens University in Canada.

He and his wife are involved in several non-profit initiatives that include support for MIT, IIT, TiE, Akshaya Patra Foundation, Public Health Foundation of India and the Social Entrepreneurship Sandbox in India.

Dr. Prasad Bhaarat Ram
Head, Google R&D India, Bangalore.


Bhupendra Sharma
Co-Founder and Director, Erehwon Innovation Consulting, Bangalore, India. Bhupendra has over the last two decades, facilitated breakthrough initiatives at organization & team levels with companies in India and Asia-Pacific.

He has been evangelizing the notion of orbit shifting innovation across the world and has spoken in various platforms in Spain, UK, Finland, USA, India, Malaysia, Philippines etc. As an Innovation professional, he carries deep insights on making innovation ecosystems work.

Paul Basil
Founder and CEO, Rural India Networks (RIN).
Prof. Bala Chakravarthy
Professor of Strategy and International Management and holder of the Shell Chair in Sustainable Business Growth at IMD, Switzerland. Prof. Chakravarthy's research, teaching and consulting interests cover three related areas: managing the global enterprise, sustainable business growth, and mastering leadership dilemmas. His latest book, Profit or Growth? Why you don't have to choose was published in 2007 by Wharton School Publishing.
Sohini Bhattacharya
Director, South Asia Partnerships, Ashoka India.
Shrikumar Suryanarayanan
Dir Gen, Assoc of Biotech Led Enterprises (ABLE). Member, Bio-con Scientific Advisory Board.

In the context of exciting growth in the country, leading Indian biotechnology companies recognize the need for a forum that would represent India's unique Biotech environment. A forum that would generate a symbiotic interface between the industry, the government, academic and research bodies, and domestic and international investors. ABLE was the natural result of this need and is envisaged as the collective face of the Indian Biotech industry. This is an interesting ecosystem in this area.


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