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Innovation Hub plans to draw more students

Guwahati, Feb. 26: The Regional Science Centre, Guwahati (RSC), is hopeful of attracting more students with its recently inaugurated “Innovation Hub”, which is fourth of its kind in the country.

“The ‘Innovation Hub’ is another important addition to the centre. Considering the facilities available in the hub, we are hoping that it will become one of the major attractions for students in the centre,” said a senior official.

The hub has been equipped with components namely, the “Hall of Fame” with stories of inventions and inventors, several multimedia kiosks to explore major inventions, “Innovation Resource Centre” with online access to innovation-centric resources, e-journals, books and innovation portals. There is an “Innovative Laboratory” to carry out activities, experiments and projects in a multi-disciplinary set up, “Technical Laboratory” for robotics and microprocessor programming, “Tod-Phod-Jod” (break and remake) for students to open gadgets and reassemble them on their own, “Kabad Se Jugad” (build from scrap) for students to develop things from scrap and low-cost materials.

“We have also put up an idea box for children to propose ideas and thus create an idea bank. The best ideas will be chosen for experimentation, model-making and project work. Besides, children are encouraged to identify real-life problems, investigatory projects and work on for solutions under the guidance of mentors,” said the official. The decade 2010-2020 has been declared as the “Decade of Innovation” by President Pranab Mukherjee. .

The science centre is the fourth unit in the country under the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), to launch an “Innovation Hub” in keeping with the above vision. “The intention of the hub is to provide an open platform to the young people to engage in innovative and creative activities. Here they can experiment and pursue their innovative ideas, nurture their potential and develop innovation-centric mindset. The “Innovation Hub” of the research centre, Guwahati, will engage the youth in creative hobbies and activities in science and technology to promote their critical thinking and practical problem solving skills,” the official said.

The hub was recently inaugurated by Sindhushree Khullar, secretary of Planning Commission in the presence of Mridul Hazarika, vice-chancellor of Gauhati University, Anil Kr Goswami, former principal of Cotton College and scientist Uddhab Kr Bharali.

On the recommendation of the National Innovation Council and supported by ministry of culture, NCSM has set up five Innovation Hubs, including one in the science centre, to inspire innovation by young students. The other four hubs have also been created on the science centre premises of NCSM in Calcutta, Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai.

There are now plans with the centre to set up about 100 such innovation spaces in the country within a decade. A proposal has been drawn to set up 100 such innovation spaces with special funding from Planning Commission through the ministry of culture.