Critical analysis of the National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI) program of the Department of Science and Technology (DST)

Department of Science and Technology (DST) has announced a National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI) is an umbrella program for nurturing knowledge-based and technology-driven ideas and innovations into successful start-ups.

Following are the salient features:
1. Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EIR) Programme is one of the programs introduced under NIDHI to inspire the best talents to be entrepreneurs, to minimize the risk involved in pursuing start-ups, and to partially set off their opportunity costs of high paying jobs.
2. The NIDHI-EIR program provides tremendous opportunities for innovative entrepreneurs to expand their networks and get critical feedback on their ventures in order to promote their entrepreneurial career goals and aspirations.
3. The opportunities under NIDHI-EIR Programme include:
A) Guidance from experienced, innovative, and highly successful entrepreneurs on the business concept, strategy, or venture, and insight into specific industries or markets.
B) Best practices for starting a business and broaden the professional network.
C) Co-working spaces for developing the idea into a marketable product.
The Programme thus encourages enterprising individuals to venture out and pursue daring
entrepreneurial ideas as well as enhances the quantity and quality of start-ups. It stimulates
the innovation ecosystem in the country.

Positive potential
1. It will find & nurture new and innovative solutions for major challenges being faced by the society that is viable and sustainable.
2. It will pick up ideas from untapped sources and convert them into start-ups.
3. It can generate better awareness about entrepreneurship amongst India’s masses and reach out to aspiring and existing entrepreneurs through active media outreach.
4. It can expand the pipeline of potential incubates for all Technology-Based Industries.
5. It will provide structured mentoring, guidance, prototyping grants, and seed-funding for ideas applying for such programs.
6) It can build a vibrant startup ecosystem, by establishing a network of academia, financial
institutions, industries and other institutions.
7) When complemented with existing Programmes like Million Minds Augmenting National
aspirations and potential ( MANAK), NIDHI can transform the entire gamut of the innovation ecosystem in the country.

Thus by extending policy support to the innovation ecosystem, the Government is working to establish a Knowledge-based Economy and Innovation-driven society.

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