With the world going through rapid changes – environment, science and technology, business and economy – innovation needs to take a different approach to be successful and remain relevant. Organizations are looking beyond their internal R&D teams for ideas and innovations as it is difficult for a handful of researchers to germinate all ideas.
Innovation is no more unidirectional – flowing out from the lab. Rather it is more of a large wheel that has multiple key components. Way back in 2006, IBM CEO Study found that only 17 percent of the CEOs were relying on innovative ideas. The most common sources were employees (41 percent), followed by business partners (38 percent) and customers (37 percent). Clearly, as innovation expands throughout the organization and beyond, the need to enable collaboration for innovation becomes increasingly important. For global issues like water, security, terrorism, etc requires collaboration of enormous magnitude as they are layered and have multiple facets. It needs a coordinated effort from all the concerned – researchers, experts, policy makers, enterprises – to find solution to some of the pressing issues of today’s time.
IBM strongly believes that innovation germinates from the intersections of ideas and has to be open, collaborative, and multi-disciplinary. The India lab of IBM Research works closely with the larger ecosystem, constituting academic institutions, clients and partners to drive this vision of collaborative research and innovation. With this goal IBM has recently signed two Open Collaborative Research (OCR) programs with Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay (US) and National Institute of Design (NID) for Mobile Web research.
The unique research collaboration with IIT Bombay and NID will focus on the development of new designs for mobile device interfaces that can easily be used by people who and are semiliterate or illiterate, as well as individuals who have limited or no access to information technology.