National Conference

“Innovating for Development and Sustainability” October 30 and 31, 2015  Navrachana University, Vadodara

The Navrachana University hosted its first National Conference on “Innovating for Development and Sustainability” on October 30-31 in Vadodara. The Conference was visualized keeping in mind sustainable development issues identified by the United Nations’ adoption of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030, and the use of Innovation as a dynamic tool for development. More than 110 participants, who have done truly innovative and sustainable grassroot level work in various fields, came from Ontario (Canada), and from all over India – Guwahati, Raipur, Ballarpur, Dehradun, Dhanbad, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Pune, Bhopal, New Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, and Vadodara. They presented the products they have developed and the ideas they were working upon for sustainable alternatives and deliberate on the themes and sub-themes of the Conference, hopefully leading to the formation of a practical document for research and future use in academics.

The Inaugural Address was delivered by Padma Shri Dr. Ganesh Devy, whose address focussed on “The Phenomenology of Termination: What Sustains and Why?”  It presents a trajectory of the human consciousness and the process of evolution that has placed the human mind in an adversarial position in relation to nature. After taking a stock of the current concerns related to continuation of Life on our planet and the ‘termination’ related anxieties, Prof Devy focussed on the idea of evolutionary consciousness as the basis of sustainability. The Keynote Address was presented by Padma Shri Dr. M H Mehta, focussing on “Innovations – Development and a Sustainable Future”.

More than 30 eminent experts from various fields including architecture and design, business, science, governance, and industry delivered talks on Water Conservation, Efficient Energy Use, Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Conservation, Revival of River Systems, Wind Power, Bio-Shields to protect vulnerable eco-zones such as mountains, deserts, coastal and riversides, Sanitation and Waste Disposal Management, Green Architecture, Social Engineering/Entrepreneurship Models, Healthcare through Naturopathy, Carbon Footprint and Low-Carbon Economy Models, Sustainable Design Models, Potash Recovery from the sea, and the role of Corporate Social Responsibility in supporting these initiatives. The National Conference thus explored the different facets of development, sustainability and innovation in interesting and exciting ways, structured around the sub-themes of Education, Science and Technology, Public Policy and Societal Challenges, Business Management, Media and Message, and Environment and Design. There was a simultaneous Exhibition at the Conference venue that displayed information and products on models of sustainability. Poster presentations by university students provided a glimpse of ‘student think’ on the theme.

On October 31st, the Valedictory Address was delivered by Dr. Anil Kane. His focus was on, “Can Wind Power Meet the World Electricity Demand?”

The two day conference attempted to provide a platform to deliberate upon various questions and solutions to the issues of sustainability. Conference was divided in several parallel sessions – participants had choice of selecting the speakers and session they wish to attend.

“Innovating for Development and Sustainability” October 5 and 6, 2017 Navrachana University, Vadodara

The Navrachana University hosted its 2nd National Conference on “Innovating for Development and Sustainability” on October 5-6 in Vadodara. The Conference was visualized keeping in mind sustainable development issues identified by the United Nations’ adoption of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030, and the use of Innovation as a dynamic tool for development. A total of hundred presentations were made by participants from New Delhi, Pune, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Vallabh Vidyanagar and Vadodara. A critical angle to the deliberations were offered by ‘student think’ in the form of poster presentation.

Participants  presented the concepts and ideas they are working upon for sustainable alternatives and deliberate on the themes and sub-themes of the Conference, hopefully leading to the formation of a white paper for research and future use in academics.

In the Inaugural Function, a talk was delivered by Dr. Vinod Rao IAS, Municipal Commissioner, Vadodara on Innovative and Sustainable Initiatives for Vadodara: Smart City Mission.

Shri Sunil Shah, Chairman, Gujarat Innovation Society, whose address focussed on “Innovation and Individual”.

The Keynote Address was presented by Prof. H.C.Pradhan – President, Indian Association for Physics Teachers, Former, Senior Professor and Center Director, Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE) who spoke on Innovations in Education for Sustainable Development

Prof. Raghavan Rangarajan from Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad, who focussed on Cosmology – The Story of Our Universe.

On Day Two, 6th October

Shri. Kartikeya V. Sarabhai –Director, Cener for Environment Education, Ahmadabad spoke on Sustainable Development.

Dr. Ravikant Joshi – National Urban Livelihood Mission – Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi deliberated upon Financing Strategies for achieving Sustainable Development Goals of Smart Cities – Is Smart Cities Mission a right approach?

In addition, more than 10 eminent experts from various fields including architecture and design, business, science, governance, and industry delivered talks on Nuclear Medicine, Social Innovation, Corporate Social Responsibility, Environmental Governance, Climate Change, Ground water contamination, Critical Thinking, Gender Roles towards an Inclusive Society, Sustainable Development in School Education, etc.

The National Conference thus explored the different facets of development, sustainability and innovation in interesting and exciting ways, structured around the sub-themes of Education, Science and Technology, Public Policy and Society, Cultural and Media, Economics and Business Management, and Environment and Design. There was a simultaneous Exhibition at the Conference venue that will display information and products on models of sustainability. Poster presentations by university students provided a glimpse of ‘student think’ on the theme.

On October 6th, the Valedictory Address was delivered by Dr.Isher Judge Ahluwalia from The Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER).

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