Join a team that develops sustainable solutions, receive expert training, and stand a chance to receive a seed grant of up to 10 lakhs.
“Ideas to Impact (i2I)” is a nation-wide competition in India, spearheaded by IIT Madras and supported by Wipro Foundation. The contest is designed to transform innovative ecological concepts into viable prototypes that actively contribute to a carbon-neutral future. Its mission is to equip students, who have a keen interest in resource circularity, with the necessary resources, mentorship and guidance. This support will empower them in their journey, from the initial ideation phase to the proof-of-concept stage. Upon successful completion of this program, students will be well-prepared to participate in initiatives like the Carbon Zero Challenge (CZC) and kickstart their entrepreneurial journey.
The vision of the contest is to provide a platform for students with a strong leaning toward a career in sustainability. It aims to revolutionize the approach to resource management and consumption. This idea-pitching competition rallies behind the power of circularity to transform industries, redefine sustainability, and safeguard the planet.
Circularity isn’t just a concept. It’s a transformative framework to confront global crises head-on. Bold steps are being taken toward tackling climate change, resource depletion, biodiversity loss, waste and pollution by embracing circular economy principles. It’s time to turn challenges into opportunities, and through collaborative innovation, bring about a world where humanity thrives within its ecological boundaries. This marks the inaugural edition of the “Ideas to Impact (i2I)” contest. Supported by Wipro Foundation, this is the latest offering of the Wipro earthian College Program for students across India.
IIT Madras stands as a distinguished institution, widely recognized for its significant contributions to higher technological education and applied research. The institute holds the prestigious distinction of being India's leading educational institution, as recognized by Ministry of Education's NIRF, and Atal Ranking of Institutions on Innovation Achievement (ARIIA). IIT Madras demonstrates an unwavering dedication to instilling a robust environmental consciousness, with the overarching goal of shaping future leaders deeply committed to sustainability principles. The institute spearheads transformative changes through initiatives such as the Carbon Zero Challenge, which has supported 75 eco-innovators over three (3) cohorts and propelled the teams towards commercial success. Building on this success, IIT Madras is launching “Ideas to Impact (i2I),” a precursor to Carbon Zero Challenge.
Launched in 2011, the Wipro earthian sustainability education program works at the intersection of Wipro’s commitment to the key domains of education and ecology.
For Wipro, more than a decade-long investment of resources and time in education indicates that we see this as a key driver of long-term and systemic change. Over the years, our work with higher education institutes has helped us push our common agenda of strengthening and enabling education for sustainability. Our intentions are to facilitate and co-create platforms to help infuse sustainability ideas, concepts and practices within the higher education ecosystem.
Issues of sustainability are complex and need multidisciplinary thinking and constant re-evaluating and refining. Some of the solutions we are looking for are along the lines of optimizing resource use to reduce waste, sustainable alternatives to increase agricultural output, and others. This competition provides a platform to students, to serve as a launching pad for such concepts, and to facilitate their transformation into tangible realities. Through this collaboration with IIT Madras, Wipro earthian aims to support initiatives that promise to deliver innovative solutions focused on circularity and sustainability.
Ready to take on the challenge?
A total of 25 ideas with great potential will be selected. Each of the 25 teams behind these ideas will be offered intensive training on entrepreneurship to help create practical and effective sustainability solutions.
Ideas to Impact (i2I) provides an amazing opportunity to showcase your validated idea at IIT Madras and offers incredible rewards for the top 5 teams.
Selected 25 teams will receive upto 50K support for developing their protoytpes.
Grand prize of up to INR 1 lakh for each of the 5 winning teams. The amount will be shared among the Team Lead and Team Associates.
Direct entry into theCarbon Zero Challenge (CZC) 5.0, with a chance to secure prototype funding of up to INR 5 Lakhs and win a seed grant of up to INR 10 Lakhs.
Opportunity to showcase the idea to a larger audience at the Grand Expo in July 2024 at IIT Madras.
What do we offer?
Training on prototype development
Training on customer discovery, sustainability & pitching, and presentation skills.
Access to mentorship
Mentoring sessions on idea development
Visibility and networking opportunity
Opportunity to showcase your innovation on CZC, and at IIT Madras
End of December
Jan - July 2024
End of July 2024
Launch of Ideas to Impact (i2I)
Last date for application
Selection of Top 25 teams
Announcement of Top 25- Embarkment event
Lab-scale prototype development
Announcement of Top 5 teams
In the Ideas to Impact challenge, participants will be provided with an opportunity to ideate solutions for issues concerning the circularity of resources.
Students will look at sustainable alternatives to resource management, including air, water, energy, soil and material/ waste. A few problem statements are available for reference. Students may use these statements as guides and build ideas around them. They are also free to look at other topics and ideas.
The following problem statements would be useful in understanding the type of solutions that we are looking for. Please note that the detailed problem statements shared here are indicative only. Additionally, some timely eco-innovations with a meaningful impact on addressing current environmental challenges include carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS), green hydrogen, lithium-ion battery recycling, waste-to-wealth technologies, Artificial Intelligence/ Machine learning, Data Analytics based solutions for environmental problems, etc. The topics, areas of work, and issues need not be limited to these. Students are welcome to choose a topic or an area of interest of their choice within the five thematic areas.
Creating Healthier Zones in Cities
Disaster resilience in the Built Environment in the Hills
Disaster resilience in the Built Environment in the Coastal Cities
Sustainable Management of Construction and Demolition Waste
Nature Based Solutions for Waste Water Treatment
Automated Waste Water Treatment
Heat Islands and their impacts
All undergraduate, postgraduate, PhD and MBA students currently pursuing their degrees are eligible to apply.
Students pursuing engineering programs, with an interest in circular economy / environment science, may apply. You need to be pursuing studies in environmental engineering, sustainability studies, climate change studies, and with a basic understanding of circular economy.
The team can comprise of a mix of students who will bring in a combination of sciences, engineering, business literacy, management, and/or entrepreneurship.
How to apply
Fill out the ‘Create New Account’ form.
You will receive an email with a verification link. Click the verification link and set your password.
Login to the application portal using the username and password.
Submit the registration form.
You will be informed via email if you are qualified for the next round.
Teams led by a Team Lead and mentored by a Lead Faculty will work on innovative ideas to establish technical viability for potential commercialization partners or customers. The Student Lead Associate, and Associates, should be in their 2nd year or above of an undergraduate program, 1st year or above of a postgraduate program, or doctoral research students, and take responsibility for leading the technical, business and sustainability modules of the project.
The Team Lead is the person primarily responsible for working on the project and fund management of the team.
The Team Lead will be required to participate in all training and progress review sessions.
The Team Leads will be required to coordinate with the organizers for all submissions and requirements related to funds disbursement, training, mentoring and progress review sessions.
The Team Leads are expected to supervise all submissions made by their teams regarding training, mentoring and progress review sessions held by the organizers.
The team typically comprises undergraduate (2nd year or above) or postgraduate students (1st year or above) or research scholars who are involved with the project submitted. A Student Lead Associate should be identified. There can be more than one, up to four, associates - ideally, one focusing on technical aspects, one on implementation/business aspects, and one on sustainability aspects.
He/she will be responsible for the execution of the project, with the help of the Team Lead Faculty and Advisor.
Team Associates will be required to participate in all CZC training and progress review sessions.
Team members are expected to work in close coordination with the Team Lead Associate, Team Advisor/Lead Faculty.
The Lead Faculty will be responsible for guiding the team's progress and monitoring the utilization of the proof-of-concept fund.
The Faculty-in-Charge should be able to identify the challenges, existing solutions, their drawbacks, and implementation hurdles due to technology, policy and social\legal aspects.
The Lead Faculty is expected to work with the team to develop an appropriate solution for the identified problem throughout the duration of the program.
2 to 5 members are welcome to apply.
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