In the simplest words, Innovation is 'applying creative thinking for creating a new product or service'; or, providing an existing service or making an existing product in a new beneficial way.
The CMI nationwide survey ranked Innovativeness as one of the top five attributes for competitiveness, personal and professional growth and achievement. Not only does Innovation help the society all around, it creates wealth and prosperity.
When presented with a specific problem, the Indian mind can work tirelessly to find a fix for it. However, the focus seems to be not on finding necessarily an innovative solution but making do with any fix. In fact, the nationwide survey gave India a low score of 32.5 out of 100 on Innovativeness. This was corroborated by India’s low ranking for innovation. See the Table for 2019 ranking. (Source: Bloomberg.)
How does CMI help students and professionals acquire innovative thinking? In the FLY course, students spend most of their time taking on challenges and doing innovative exercises to stretch their brains and come up with innovative ideas and solutions. The exercises are individual and group allowing students to participate, observe and analyze each other’s approach, and learn ways to
Innovation Table - Bloomberg.png
start practicing innovative thinking. They are then provided a forum in FLY’s Off-Class programs to continue to hone in these skills. (The basis of the FLY pedagogy is the well-researched Growth Mindset theory that has shown that a habit of mind can be acquired by appropriate practice.)
The course challenges students to find ways to overcome two key cultural aspects of Indian society that hinder innovative thinking: (i) acceptance of mediocrity or 'Chalta hai' approach and (ii) what a British economist defined as Tragedy of Commons - that is where one does all one can for the good of oneself – one’s family, home, job - even if it is to the detriment of the “common good.”
In this session, the emphasis is not on getting a perfect solution but an innovative one - to stretch the mind and what the cliché says - to think out of the box. We give them tools and techniques for that.