In October 2019, Google and the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), Govt. of India came together to launch the Build for Digital India - Student Developers Solve for India program. The aim of this initiative was to give Indian science, technology and engineering students a platform to become solution creators for the problems they see around them and their communities. Students were invited to build solutions on any of the following themes:
- Smart Cities & Infrastructure
- Mobility & Transportation
- Women Safety
- Digital India
- Environment & Sustainable Development Goals
- Accessibility & Disability
- Digital Literacy
Here’s a glimpse of the 6 month journey the students went through from October 2019 to June 2020:
Application Phase: We received an overwhelming response from over 7000 students from more than a thousand universities in India
Learn & Build Phase: To help the students build their prototypes, the students received access to curated content across technologies like Mobile, Web, Machine Learning & Cloud. Topics such as Product Strategy, Marketing, UX were also covered along with case studies of fellow changemakers that the teams could use to think through while building their working prototypes.
Feedback Phase: We received 3000+ project submissions by teams & individuals for the feedback phase of the program. We shortlisted 61 projects to attend the in-person mentorship bootcamps across 4 cities in India. These students met with mentors for feedback on their progress and received actionable insights to help them further improve their solutions.
Final Pitch Event: Based on feedback shared by the mentors, we shortlisted the top 15 projects for the Build For Digital India pitch event.
Due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19, we organized the entire pitch event online for the 15 finalists on 23rd June 2020. These finalists, who we supported closely for this process then pitched their solutions to a jury of entrepreneurs, Google teams and industry experts.
Here are the top 3 teams that emerged from the Final Pitch event:
1 : The Third Eye (Student team from MIT world Peace University, Maharashtra) ; Theme - Smart Cities & Infrastructure
2 : Anukai Solutions (Student team from Chitkara University, Punjab) ; Theme - Smart Cities & Infrastructure
3 : ISpeakFree.LY (Student team from Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Maharashtra) ; Theme - Accessibility & Disability
Congratulations to these student teams and to every student that participated in this 6-month journey. We are confident your entrepreneurial spirit and innovative solutions will help address areas that are core to India’s challenges.
We are also grateful to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Govt. of India for their partnership and encouragement in bringing the Digital India vision to life by supporting the student entrepreneur and tech ecosystem to build for a truly digital India.
Posted by Paul Ravindranath, Program Manager, Google India Developer Relations