NEW DELHI – September 30, 2021 – The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), the Government of India’s national policy think tank, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Intel have come together to establish a new experience studio at the NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies Cloud Innovation Center (CIC). Located in NITI Aayog’s New Delhi premises, the studio will be a hub for collaboration and experimentation to enable problem solving and innovation between government stakeholders, startups, enterprises, and industry domain experts.
The studio will help showcase the potential of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), Internet of Things (IoT), augmented reality and virtual reality (AR/ VR), blockchain, and robotics to accelerate their application in public sector use cases. The studio will encourage open innovation and serve as a hub for government, healthcare, education, and nonprofit startups from India to showcase their solutions. It will also provide startups with an option to access necessary support to enhance and scale their solutions.
NITI Aayog will also leverage the studio to demonstrate the application of geospatial, AR/VR, drone, and IoT solutions in verticals such as healthcare, agriculture, and smart infrastructure. Major homegrown industry leaders in respective fields of technology and research – like MapMyIndia in geospatial solutions, Raphe mPhibr Pvt. Ltd. in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and the Centre for Advanced Research in Imaging, Neuroscience and Genomics (CARING), which delivers AI in healthcare – and global leaders like Dassault Systemes, and startups like Vizara Technologies and Agatsa Software Pvt. Ltd. are demonstrating their solutions at the studio. Startups will be encouraged to participate actively in the studio through hackathons, grand challenges, and other capacity building initiatives, in collaboration with the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) and Atal Incubation Centres (AIC).
The studio was inaugurated today in the presence of Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog, by Shri Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog and Rahul Sharma, President, Public Sector – Amazon Internet Services Pvt. Ltd. (AISPL), AWS India and South Asia. Prakash Mallya, VP & MD – Sales, Marketing & Communications Group, Intel India attended the inauguration virtually.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that effective collaboration and experimentation matter significantly when developing innovative solutions to address problems of scale in the country. As the NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies CIC identifies societal challenges to address, it is important to embrace a culture of open innovation and working backwards from problem statements. The new experience studio with AWS and Intel will further support our mission to identify and deploy leading edge technologies to drive continuous innovation in delivering citizen services,” said Shri Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog.
“The new experience studio at the NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies CIC, based on the AWS Cloud Innovation Centers program, aims to quickly solve public sector challenges through collaboration and actualize innovations from experimentation and prototypes. The studio will help subject matter experts from different verticals, government stakeholders, and startups to apply design thinking to go deeper into problem areas and develop solutions to enable digital healthcare, build the digital agriculture ecosystem, and develop the digital infrastructure for smart cities in India. It will be a hub for creativity, experimentation, and testing new ideas to solve challenges sourced from the community,” said Rahul Sharma, President, Public Sector – AISPL, AWS India and South Asia.
“Cloud innovation is fundamental to unlocking the potential of future technologies to create scalable impact across sectors. Intel is committed to expanding access to technology resources and knowledge through our collaboration with NITI Aayog and AWS to develop, build, and support cloud services that can enrich the lives of people in India and around the world. The new NITI Aayog CIC Experience Studio is a powerful example of industry collaboration to accelerate technology solutions for meaningful social impact,” said Prakash Mallya, VP & MD – Sales, Marketing & Communications Group, Intel India.
The experience studio at the NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies CIC will adopt a hybrid model enabling physical and virtual workspaces to collaborate seamlessly. The physical workspace design in the studio will enable solutions showcase, interactive demos, and rapid prototyping among stakeholders to converge on ideas for further action. The studio’s digital workspace will enable state-of-the-art collaborative environments to invite experts from various verticals, government departments, research institutions, and not-for-profit organisations for hands-on workshops.
The NITI Aayog Frontier Technologies CIC was established in October 2020 as part of the AWS Cloud Innovation Centers Global Program. Focusing on tackling the challenges facing India, the CIC recently developed COvAID during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Developed in five days, COvAID provided a platform for consolidating the end-to-end flow of aid received to support COVID-19 affected people, distributing the aid in a transparent manner, and accelerating the speed at which the aid reaches beneficiaries. In another example, working with the Digi Yatra Foundation, the CIC also anchored the Digital Yatra Central Ecosystem (DYCE) Challenge, inviting startups to develop a real time facial biometric validation solution to provide a friction-less, hassle-free, contact-less, and safe experience to passengers during air travel.
AWS Public Sector CICs are also present across Australia, Bahrain, Canada, France, Germany, South Korea, and United States. Earlier this year, AWS also collaborated with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in India to establish a Quantum Computing Applications Lab in the country, focused on accelerating quantum computing-led research and development, and enabling new scientific discoveries aligned to the government’s science and technology priorities.