BOSTON: The MIT India Conference 2016 organized by the MIT MBA students and teachers’ team at MIT, Cambridge on Sunday April 3, was aimed at highlighting the key social, business, and political challenges, practices, and innovations shaping India today and tomorrow, besides creating a platform that connects East and West through educating and preparing the next generation of world leaders.
This conference addressed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Startup India” initiative and focused on how to create a booming environment in India to put “Startup India” into action and active growth.
The conference brought together a number of successful young startup entrepreneurs from India and the United States who joined in the ‘Startup India’ initiative to share their leading business experiences and challenges.
Rafael Raif, MIT president, sent out his welcome letter and his best wishes to MIT India conference. Aditi Sarangi, Aditya Rao, Munaf Kachwala and their team formally received hundreds of audience and distinguished speakers to the conference. A welcome address was given by S.P. Kothari, Prof. of Accounting and Finance at the Sloan School of Management.
Dr. Mukesh Aghi, the President of the US-India Business Council, presented Opening Remarks at the conference and mentioned that his organization is dedicated to strengthen the economic and commercial relationship between the United States and India and serve as a direct link between business and government leaders. The keynote speaker of this conference was Arvind Subramanian, the chief economic advisor to the government of India.
Prof Kothari facilitated Q&A session of Subramanian. Ron Spangler, a graduate of MIT spoke on what new technology transition opportunities in energy and defense are available with this ‘Startup India’ Initiative.
There were three panel discussions with thought provoking speakers and very experienced moderators.The first panel focused on, ‘Transforming ideas into reality – Milestones and decisions in the early years’ with enterprising and ingenious speakers who were led by a recognized host Christina Chase.
She is a lecturer and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship.
The second panel emphasized on, ‘The Journey to scale – Growing sustainably in a complex market with speakers’ experiences and challenges.’ Yasheng Huang, International Program Professor in Chinese Economy, shrewdly stimulated speakers and assisted, the session to run smoothly with Q&A part.
Rakesh Pandey, a distinguished Research Scientist at Olin College of Engineering facilitated the third panel on, ‘Creating lasting impact – Opportunities in social entrepreneurship.’ These entrepreneurs made huge impact in community by helping villagers in India even though there are no tangible indicators to measure their social impact.
As a second keynote speaker, Gururaj Deshpande, the President and Chairman of Sparta Group , shared his own entrepreneurial experiences, projects that help school children with mid-day meal program and farmers with watershed programs etc. He also gave some tips on how to solve challenges and hold on to optimism to obtain success in our ventures.
A dedicated team of MIT students – Aditi Sarangi, Aditya Rao, Munaf Kachwala, Rahul Arora, Alok Singh, Ishan Gokhale, Sheila Chheda, Manisha Singh, Grace Kermani, Priyanka Chaturvedi, Jaswanth Madhavan, Shahid Azad, Sruthi Reddy Chintaunta, Naina Saxena, Alankrita Nigam, Siya Purohit, Sharvi Mewada, Karthik Gopalakrishnana, Juhi Singh, Remya Kurup, Rishi Gohil, Francis Goyes, Kairav Shroff, Malika Shahrawat – worked hard for the past eight months to put this event together..
Aditya Rao thanked his teachers, mentors and peers as also sponsors for putting this conference together. He also thanked MIT Community poster presenters for showcasing their innovative projects and acknowledged MIT’s support by providing them with a beautiful media lab for hosting the conference. He expressed his gratitude to all the speakers for coming and sharing their experiences with others and willingness to help and guide others with their startup undertakings.