Workshop on Product Design and Innovation,
18-19 December, 2015

    Let’s come together to innovate: (1) group photo of participants along with faculty members, (2) Prof. B. D. Chaudhary facilitating Prof. M. Balakrishnan with Himachali tradition, (3) Prof. P.V.M. Rao, (4) Prof. Ramesh Oruganti and (5) a participant group giving presentation on product reverse engineering.

Design Innovation Center, IIT Mandi organised a two-day workshop on Product Design and Innovation at Kamand campus on 18-19 December 2015. The workshop drew participants from all over the country. Prof. B.D Chaudhary (Dean Academics), Prof. Ramesh Oruganti (Advisor to Dean SRIC), Prof. M. Balakrishnan (IIT Delhi), Prof. P.V.M Rao (IIT Delhi), Dr. Rajnesh Sharma (IIT Mandi), Dr. Rajeev Kumar (IIT Mandi) and Dr. Om Prakash Singh (IIT Mandi) delivered lectures and interacted with the participants. Following themes were covered: integrating product design and innovation in curricula, how and what it takes to take the design ideas to product level, concept product designing, intellectual property rights (IPR), how to the write patent claims and reverse engineering.

In the inaugural speech, Prof. B. D. Chaudhary touched upon the IIT Mandi curriculum that focuses on design and innovation. He emphasised that further ecosystem needs to be developed to take our design and innovation related projects to prototyping level. Prof. Oruganti stressed on the need for innovation in changing times. Prof. M. Balakrishnan was more emphatic on multi-disciplinary research and said that though research is important, innovation driven curriculum led by motivated faculty is the need of the hour. Our earlier practice of opening labs from 9-5PM will not work. Students needs an ecosystem to think and evaluate their ideas beyond class room hours. He shared his experiences in product development. Prof. P.V.M Rao underlined faculty from different expertise need to come together. She shared his experience how humanity department helped in choosing colour of the product and their contribution in providing human aspect in product designing process. Dr. Rajesh and Dr. Rajeev Kumar provided overview and processes involved in concept product designing.

On second day, Dr. Om Prakash covered IPR and how to draft patent claims for effective protection. He discussed many patent related court cases and judgements themed around broad claims, benefits of early to market, using patents as a lethal weapon in business strategy etc. In the process, he also discussed his own experience in writing legal documents and fighting court cases of his own, of which participants were highly appreciative. Dr. Atul Dhar and Dr. Om Prakash conducted reverse engineering hands on sessions in which participants were given new working products such as microwave oven, induction heater, normal and smartphone, steam iron etc. Participants were divided in groups, asked to give a presentation and audience participated in Q&A session. A winning group was awarded trophy for showing overall performance in product knowledge and ideas on cost reduction innovation.