Technology, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Summit
Consilience brings you the Technology, Robotics, and Artificial Intelligence Summit (TRAI) for High School students. This Summit will engage students in an interdisciplinary design thinking process in order to design solutions using robotics and automation, the internet of things, and wearable technology. Students enrolled in schools across India are eligible to apply for participating in the TRAI Summit.
What should students expect?
At TRAI Summit, students should expect to experience an intense interdisciplinary environment where they will solve complex problems through rigorous brainstorming, collaborating, iterating, designing, and experimental methodologies. Students should expect to employ and develop critically important 21st-century skills, particularly communication and collaborative problem-solving, in order to learn cutting-edge technical skills and succeed in an entirely project-based environment.
Who will students work with?
Students will work along with key experts and Design Thinking coaches. The coaches bring a diverse set of backgrounds and skills ranging from engineering design and architecture to programming, software development, and robotics.
What is Design Thinking?
According to the Henry Ford Learning Institute, Design Thinking is an approach to learning that uses specific techniques and mindsets to develop a student's creative confidence. Working to identify problems and generate solutions for design challenges allows students to learn to frame their thinking around the mindsets of developing empathy, promoting a bias toward action, encouraging ideation, and working in a culture of prototyping. These technology-driven advances aren’t the work of lone geniuses, they are the result of skilled collaborative teams methodically working to understand human needs and build on each other’s knowledge, thinking and skill to design solutions. A design thinking process is key for guiding and supporting this collaboration and innovation.
Within the next forty years, two-thirds of the world's population will be living in expanding urban centers. Technology, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence are being utilized to meet important human needs related to urban development. In the context of cities and urban development, researchers, architects, urban planners, engineers, and scientists are working together to use technology to study how cities are changing, discern the needs of the people within those cities, understand how urban areas source their energy, utilize more alternative energy, provide adequate public spaces, create opportunities for urban farming and sustenance, and generate economic opportunities to sustain the livelihoods of people living and working in those urban areas.
In recent years, new technologies are bringing urban citizens to the forefront of providing relevant information about their cities. KGS Buildings, a company that has created a cloud-based software called Clockworks, applies their software to detect energy-saving opportunities in buildings' HVAC equipment and informs clients through the cloud so the buildings can be "fixed" in real time. Local Warming, a system for creating personalized climates around individuals as an alternative to heating entire buildings, offers a view of how customizable heating and cooling can become an integral part of buildings in the future. Place Pulse, a research project out of MIT, aims to crowdsource information about the "perception" of areas within a city to better guide urban policy and design decisions. Other researchers at MIT are wearing sensors to measure stress while driving and develop 'stress-scapes' of various cities. Cloud-based technology innovations, such as "Cloudcommuting" - a platform designed by Harvard/MIT graduates for point-to-point vehicle sharing systems that pay users to rebalance vehicles - look at the market economy of vehicle sharing programs. Such new technology developments promise to increase the opportunity to meet big challenges as cities continue to grow and adapt to changing populations.
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Mentors provide support to students as coaches, empathy from on the ground experience, and guidance in developing successful solutions.
Sasi is a Robotics Researcher, specializing mainly in Human Robot Interaction. When he was kid, he dreamt of becoming an engineer, astronaut, actor, artist, lawyer, psychologist and ofcourse to be GOD himself. Luckily, of all that confusion, he became an engineer, and now he is living his dream, by designing robots which could do all he ever wanted to become. He runs Gade Autonomous Systems Private Limited, a R&D robotics consultancy, which has designed robots and algorithms for many popular robotic companies around the world.
Stalin Dayanand is the Projects Director at Vanashakti. It is an environmental NGO whose thrust areas are landscape conservation, environmental education, scientific investigation and sustainable livelihoods. Vanashakti is responsible for the Ulhas River Project in Mumbai. Their initiative intends to examine the extent of toxicity of the river, make a restoration plan to revive its original form and seek accountability from the authorities responsible for the health and well being of the river, for its revival. Stalin is a passionate environmentalist whose earlier stint was with the Conservation Action Trust (CAT) as Projects Head (Mangrove Wetland Centre).
Kavita Mallya is the Officer for Projects at Vanashakti. It is an environmental NGO whose thrust areas are landscape conservation, environmental education, scientific investigation and sustainable livelihoods. Vanashakti is responsible for the Ulhas River Project in Mumbai. It is one of the largest rivers that exists in Mumbai and is a source of livelihood for many river dependent communities. Their initiative intends to examine the extent of toxicity of the river, make a restoration plan to revive its original form and seek accountability from the authorities responsible for the health and well being of the river, for its revival. Kavita is an experienced field biologist with expertise in birds and reptiles.
Speakers provide an expert understanding of the challenges based on their experience working professional in challenge areas.
Mr. Amit Ghosal is an Architect-Planner with over 30 years of wide and varied professional experience in Planning, Design and Execution of Urban-scale projects of national eminence. His basic strengths are to conceive and visualize large-scale projects in the Urban and Regional context while integrating the nuances of planning and design with economically viable and appropriate infrastructure services. His areas of interest and specialization are of “Energy Efficient Buildings”, responsive to local climate, renewable energy applications in Architectural Design, and Planning principles incorporating waste-recycling, rain-water harvesting, aquifer-recharge, economics in the lay-out of services, landscaping and other applications towards “Sustainable-Development”. Apart from his professional duties as an Architect-Planner, he has conducted courses on Sustainability, Settlement Planning, Environmental Engineering, and Energy-Conscious Architecture.
Sonal Shah is an Associate – Urban Development and Accessibility at EMBARQ India. She coordinates projects on improving accessibility to mass transit stations, and within business districts and residential neighbourhoods through street and public space design. Sonal has over 5 years’ experience in architecture, research, urban planning and design in the USA and India. She has worked on development plans, heritage management plans, urban redevelopment, and housing policy research. Sonal is an architect-urban planner. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in architecture from Kamla Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute for Architecture and Environmental Studies, Mumbai and a Master’s degree in International Planning from Columbia University, New York.
Aamer studied Commerce, Organizations and Entrepreneurship at Brown University, where he began his journey into social enterprise. With a group of classmates, he founded WaterWalla - a non-profit organisation focused on clean water distribution in urban slums. Today, Aamer leads WaterWalla's efforts in India to support and mentor student groups in water-related projects.
Rajeev Thakker runs his own architectural & design practice, a-RT, which documents the city & various spatial conditions through cartographic, architectural & other creative processes. He is also the Curator of Columbia University’s Studio X, which focuses on creating a collaborative platform for architects, artists, planners, developers, and activists to engage in research, exhibitions, debates & various other programs regarding the future of cities. He has taught design & theory at several institutions including Parsons School of Design, Rensallaer Polytecnic Institute in Rochester, N.Y. , the A.B.A.C. School of Architecture in Bangkok, Thailand and Columbia University. Rajeev obtained his Bachelors of Architecture from Syracuse University in 1994 and his Masters in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University in 1998.
Manisha is a Project Leader at Dalberg Global Development Advisers in their Mumbai office, where she is focused on inclusive business and public policy, particularly in the healthcare, education and sanitation sectors. She has experience working with corporations, non-profits, government agencies and philanthropic organizations on private sector development, program strategy, and market landscape analysis. Most recently, she worked with a large international foundation on attracting private sector engagement to provide sustainable sanitation solutions in small and medium towns in India. Currently, she is developing business plans to pilot two innovative enterprise and consumer finance solutions for renewable energy technologies in India. Prior to Dalberg, Manisha was a Senior Associate Consultant with Bain & Company in their Boston office. At Bain, she worked across industries on a variety of key strategic and operational issues, including growth strategy and organizational efficiency. She also lead Bain Boston’s chapter of Inspire, a national consulting organization for non-profit clients, where she worked mainly with clients in education and youth development. Manisha holds an A.B. with honors in Economics and Government from Harvard University.
Radhika Chatterjee is a student aiming to provide sustainable, efficient and environmentally friendly solutions to meet growing world energy demands. She is a recent graduate of Czech Technical University in Prague, and wrote her Bachelor thesis with the help of the Czech Nuclear Research Institute (UJV Rez), in which she analyzed the applicability of hydrogen as a renewable energy carrier for remotely located communities. She has worked at Vitkovice Power Engineering (Ostrava, Czech Republic) and plans to further her studies in the field of Electrical Power Engineering, specializing in Smart Grids and Buildings, at INP Grenoble in France this year.
Vivek Adhia is a Senior Associate in the Climate and Energy Program within WRI India, working with businesses to promote stewardship, innovation and an alternate response to climate change. Currently, he is leading an initiative to set up a voluntary, unanimous, industry-led National Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Program to facilitate efficient, profitable, competitive and sustainable businesses in a carbon-constrained world. Vivek has worked extensively with the corporate sector on climate strategy, carbon footprinting, water footprinting and environmental mapping, incorporating sustainable business practices across organizations. He also led a workstream on Collaborative Innovation with the World Economic Forum, covering the areas of bio-refineries, energy harnessing and alternative materials promoting and mainstreaming innovation across the food-water-energy and carbon nexus. He has a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Pune, Bachelors in Chemical Engineering from Mumbai University, and has pursued a certificate course in Management and Leadership Essentials from Harvard University.
Priyanka is a Senior Project Associate with EMBARQ India's Urban Transport team. She works on projects related to the planning, operation, and implementation of bus services. She is involved in Bus Karo Plus, a program designed to foster communication around best practices for bus systems in India. She also coordinates efforts for other public transport projects, including a potential bus rapid transit (BRT) system in Mumbai. Prior to EMBARQ, she was involved in conceptual design plans for pedestrian and cycling infrastructure in Mumbai. Prior to that she was based out of Australia where she worked as a consultant to frame policies and strategies on public and non-motorized transport. Priyanka holds a master's degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. Her bachelor's degree is in International Relations and Japanese.
Sukriti believes efficient, simple, cross disciplinary design is a large part of the solution to Earth’s resource inequality & environmental problems. She is the Co-Founder of the Academy For Earth Sustainability, which helps schools, businesses, and individuals gain critical life skills and knowledge through collaborative, hands-on projects in sustainability. She has spent many years developing & leading educational workshops with schools and corporates at Ark Eden on Lantau, a similar permaculture education model. Holding a degree in Sustainable Design & Fine Arts from George Washington University, she has worked and consulted internationally at top hospitality firms, in both interiors and resource management. She is a passionate gender activist, outdoor enthusiast and self-professed shark lover.
Laxmikant Deshpande has worked in the field of Environment Education for the past 13 years. He has worked with NGO’s, research institutes, corporates, and government agencies focusing on solid waste management, climate change, biodiversity conservation, wetlands and mangrove ecosystems of Mumbai. His work experience deals with EE for schools, colleges, citizens groups, corporate employees and policy makers. He played a lead role in the development of the ‘Communication Strategy for Solid Waste Management of Mumbai’ for the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai and ‘Indradhanushya Citizens Environment Centre’ for Pune Municipal Corporation. He has worked on projects with the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Bombay Natural History Society, Godrej Mangrove Project, Centre for Environment Education and Environmental Management Centre (EMC) and Centre for Environmental Research and Education (CERE). He has a Masters in Environment Sciences from University of Pune (2000).
Mr. Shankar Deshpande is the Jt. Project Director (Town Planning), MMRDA and Member Secretary of the Mithi River Development and Protection Authority. At Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) Mr. Deshpande has initiated several urban planning and development projects, some of them being the development of BKC into a CBD, Mithi River redevelopment project, Mumbai Metro project and several others.
Dr. Leena Wadia
Dr. Leena Chandran-Wadia is Senior Fellow at Observer Research Foundation (ORF) Mumbai, which is an independent, non-partisan, public policy think tank. She is engaged in policy research and advocacy in two main areas: 1) towards improving the quality of higher education in science and engineering in the country, and 2) on renewable energy systems, particularly distributed mini-grids for energy access in rural India. Leena received her Ph.D in physics from the Indian Institute of Science Bangalore, and did her post-doctoral research at ETH Zurich in Switzerland. She has been a technology researcher at several places in India and abroad, including NCST Mumbai (now CDAC), EPF Lausanne, and CERN in Switzerland. She has also served as Senior VP and CTO at Netcore Solutions Pvt. Ltd., a start-up company in the space of Mobile Value-Added Services.
Rishi Aggarwal is a well known environmental activist in Mumbai with a keen interest and involvement in urban issues. Over an involvement spanning 15 years he has worked with numerous NGOs and worked on impacting issues like saving the mangroves forests of Mumbai, solid waste management and improving Mumbai's public transport systems. He is a Research Fellow at Observer Research Foundation where he convenes the Mumbai Transport Forum.
Girish Nair is founder of Curiosity Gym, a startup dedicated to creating an environment and platform open to people of all ages to explore and develop their innermost curiosity and entrepreneurship skills by listening, thinking, making and iterating. Girish has over 25 years industry experience in Silicon Valley, Ireland and India. He has been Mentor at Tandem Capital, a Silicon Valley seed capital fund and Microsoft Startup Accelerator in Bangalore.Girish has been CEO of Netcore and Gamechanger, (a Netcore subsidiary), an email and mobile marketing solutions company based in Mumbai. During his tenure, Netcore was recognized as developing the most innovative campaigns for clients in the digital marketing space by several domestic and international industry bodies as well as launched an Internet of Things sub-division. Girish's interests are innovation, technology and human integration and having fun in all you do. His hobbies are biking, basketball and playing with kids.
Debartha is one of the co-founders of Sampurn(e)arth. He has keen interest in technology, sustainable development and in participating to solve environmental issues. He is a Electronics and Instrumentation Engineer and has worked for two years in Software Industry. He did his masters in Social Entrepreneurship from Tata Institute of Social Sciences. Sampurn(e)arth provides context based waste management solutions which are environmental friendly, actively engages waste pickers and is profitable. We work along with Municipal corporations, corporates, educational campuses, residentials to manage both biodegradable waste (handled through compost units or biogas plants) and non-biodegradable waste (channelized to recyclers). Waste pickers are also trained and employed to manage these systems. We also do waste audits, provide recycled paper stationery and do impact assessments.
Payal Tiwari is a graduate in Women’s Studies from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. She is particularly interested in researching on social issues from a feminist perspective. She has researched in Kashmir on women’s experiences during conflict. She has also complied an ethnographic research on nomadic tribes in Mumbai. At Observer Research Foundation Mumbai she has authored a document titled “Domestic Violence as a Women’s Health Issue: Role of Primary Prevention” and “Toilet Torture in Mumbai’s Slums”. She has been invited by MASHAV- Israel’s Agency for International Development Corporation for Ministry of Foreign Affairs for a course on Violence against Women and Children at the Golda Meir Mount Carmel International Training Centre, Haifa, Israel.
Chirag Gajjar is a Project Associate for India GHG Program, a part of WRI’s Climate Program, at the India Liaison Office in Mumbai. He works in the field of climate change mitigation. His areas of work include promotion of GHG inventories with corporations and small and medium organizations; capacity building, tool development, and mitigation goal setting through the India GHG Program. Prior to WRI, he worked with the climate change division of Deloitte and Perry Johnson Registrars Carbon Emissions Services, Inc. He was primarily involved in GHG emission reductions projects and GHG inventory projects. His other areas of works included development of audit protocols for GHG emission reductions projects under various schemes. He holds a keen interest in developing tools to inventory GHG emissions. Chirag holds Master’s and Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering from Gujarat University, India. His interests include playing cricket and theatre.
Ar. Dushyant is the Principal Architect and co-founder at The Urban Project. After gaining experience in the domain of architecture and art locally and internationally he developed a keen interest in working in the public domain to improve the urban living conditions and the interface to a city. He has worked on variety of projects in the public realm with the government bodies like BEST and the Indian Central Railways for the improvement of urban conditions and user experiences. He has done projects on multiple platforms as a product designer, artist, architect and graphic designer. Apart from the practice he also serves as an invited faculty member at Architecture Design Schools in Mumbai.
Romit Mehta is a consultant at Dalberg Global Development Advisors – an international development advisory firm. At Dalberg, he has worked for large foundations, multilateral organizations and governments, across sectors such as sanitation, renewable energy, agriculture and organizational strategy. He has work experience in multiple countries in Asia and Africa. He holds a bachelors in Economics from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai with a masters in Mathematical economics from Cambridge University, U.K. where he was a Cambridge Commonwealth and a J.N. Tata scholar.
Hamsa Iyer works as an associate fellow with Observer Research Foundation working on Waste management in educational institutions. She recently developed a manual- Integrated Solid Waste Management Plan for Educational Institutions, guidelines to make campuses a zero waste zone. She sees the strong and useful link to clean up our natural resources with her focus on waste management. She worked with India Water Portal, travelling across Maharashtra and Goa prior to ORF and writes on the popular blog-Menstrupedia, issues relating to waste management and menstrual hygiene.
What students built at previous TRAI summits!
Aquaman uses sensor technology to purify and transport water in public sewage pipeline systems.The aim of this project was to create a solution that could aid the municipal corporations of cities to transport and purify water they move across the city. This was created by students at TRAI 2016.
Smart Bin Solutions
Smart Bin Solutions for schools through which data can be collected on the amount and kinds of waste in bins at schools. This was created by students at TRAI 2015.
Cap n Charge
Cap n Charge is a solar cap that can charge your phone on the go. This was created by students at TRAI 2015.
Reclasp is a device used to gain social and community help after the rehabilitation therapy to reduce chances of relapsing of diseases and chronic ailments like drug addiction, diabetes
Motorized Knee Brace
Motorized knee brace that has an ultrasonic sensor that senses things within a 10 cm radius and makes the leg move accordingly that can help rehabilitate and restore injured knee caps. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
Health Application that consists of a central database that can be used to give rural people access to information stored on a central database that can be used to prevent diseases through cross-communication between rural villages using mobile technology. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
Stress Buster is a device that helps you get rid of stress by using an accelerometer to monitor any hand movements that can be co-related with stressful behaviour like biting nails or scratching head and using light indicators to inform user about behaviour that can cause more stress. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
A low cost prosthetic leg that is made of recycled materials and programmed using Arduino that can help disabled people in rural areas. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
Ideal Road for Mumbai
Ideal Road for Mumbai urban design plan that consists of a two wheeler pathway, pedestrian crossing button, speed breakers between lanes, and a no trucks and buses policy. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
A.W.F.A. Bot is used to transport water from cities to villages -mainly in areas which experience major drought. It carries the water in aluminium tubs which avoids leakage (preventing loss of water) and is also cheap. While transporting the water, it also purifies it through the process of reverse osmosis. This makes it safe for drinking. This was created by students at TRAI 2016.
Piezo Tiles on Footbridges
Using Piezo Tiles on footbridges that connect platforms at railway stations in Mumbai to illuminate them at night to avoid accidents. This was created by students at TRAI 2014.
Taking the Lead: Designing Solutions for Urban Development
Changes in Urban Development
Design Thinking Process
Define Problem Brief
Ideate & Prototype Solutions
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