AIT Camp October 2016 – Taking research ideas to the market

Academia-Industry Training 2016, organized between 2nd October to 7th October 2016, was a two-part program curated by swissnex India, in collaboration with SINE (IIT Bombay) and DST, to support promising researchers in transforming their research into market applications. The first part of the program took place at swissnex India, where participants from Switzerland and India were provided the tools, information and contacts that would enable them to make the transition from researcher to entrepreneur. In the second leg of the program, the participants will test out their research ideas in the Swiss market.

AIT is part of the India-Swiss Joint Research Program between Switzerland and India mandated by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) to EPFL CODEV “Leading House”. They are co-organized with venturelab, swissnex India and swissnex Brazil.

Participants share their thoughts on the program –


Thinking back on the week I spent with swissnex India, for the Academia Industry Training camp, there are three words that come to my mind, all starting with “i” – incredible, insightful & inspirational. It was an incredible week. I arrived in Bangalore with certain expectations, telling myself that “you are here to learn and exercise your know-how in the challenging Indian market”. It’s always good to have expectations, however, it’s far better to grow new, bigger ones, as soon as you realize the potential waiting for you to harness. Every morning I had new expectations and the AIT camp was there to help me meet them 12 hours later. I feel lucky to have met and worked with the people at swissnex India who were the mind and soul behind this week. It was an insightful week as I gained extremely valuable insights into the world of entrepreneurship and into the challenging Indian market. Every time I sat at a table with people from various businesses or academia backgrounds to discuss my company idea, there was something new to discover and a new vision of my work to adopt. Lastly, it was an inspirational week. By the end of the program, I had gained new knowledge, energy and, most importantly, inspiration, to better shape the ideas and tools that we developed, along with my advisor Prof. Lyesse Laloui, at EPFL, Lausanne.



AIT enabled me to ‘walk the walk and talk the talk’ of entrepreneurship all thanks to the practical approach of the workshop. Notably, Business model Canvas was brought to life by Mr. Sharat, Startup finance was simplified by Mr. Guhesh Ramanathan & IP explained in a capsule format by Mr. Neeraj Gupta at Excubator! Mr. Pankaj Sharma from LeadInvent was an inspiration via his sharing of experiences and incisive commentary on the current scenario of medical technologies in India. Networking within the group was strong, with inputs from potential partners, future customers and even investors building up from the beginning of the workshop!! Visits to top – notch groups, expert mentoring, creative food & an opportunity to crossover to the Swiss side soon; all manna for budding Indian entrepreneurs!! My heartfelt gratitude to  swissnex India, DST, EPFL, and SINE (IIT Bombay) who were the organizers, facilitators & experts, for making this opportunity available to Indian & Swiss researchers. The participants hope that such opportunities are available in the future too!