- The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) is a flagship initiative set up by the NITI Aayog to promote innovation and entrepreneurship across the length and breadth of the country.
- AIM’s objective is to develop new programmes and policies for fostering innovation in different sectors of the economy, provide platform and collaboration opportunities for different stakeholders, create awareness and create an umbrella structure to oversee the innovation ecosystem of the country.
Initiatives under Atal Innovation Mission
Atal Tinkering Labs – at School Level
- AIM has launched the establishment of thousands of Atal Tinkering Labs enabling students from grade 6 to grade 12 to have access to and tinker with innovative tools and technologies like 3D printers, robotics, miniaturised electronics do-it-yourself kits, thus stimulating a problem solving innovative mindset to solve problems in the community they are in.
- Some activities related to ATL Operational Excellence, Proactive Promotion of Innovation & Thought Leadership, Collaborations & Partnerships and New Initiatives by AIM:
- ATL Gandhian Challenge – launched in all schools along with UNICEF.
- India Stamp Creativity challenge- launched with UNICEF and India Post.
- PM India Innovative Learning DHRUV Program – AIM invited as key partner by MHRD.
Atal Incubators at Universities, Institutions, Industry Level
- To promote creation of a supporting ecosystem for start-ups and entrepreneurs, AIM has been establishing world-class incubators called Atal Incubation Centres (AICs) in universities. Institutions, corporates, etc. that would foster innovative start-ups and become scalable and sustainable enterprises.
Atal Community Innovation Centres – Serving Unserved and Under-Served Regions of India
- To promote the benefits of technology led innovation to the unserved/ underserved regions of India including Tier 2, Tier 3 cities, aspirational districts, tribal, hilly and coastal areas, AIM is setting up Atal Community Innovation Centres (ACICs) with a unique partnership driven model wherein AIM would grant up to Rs. 2.5 crore to an ACIC subject to a partner proving equal or greater matching funding.
Atal New India Challenges – Product and Service Innovations with National Impact
- To create product and service innovations having national socio-economic impact, AIM has launched over 24 Atal New India Challenges in partnership with five different ministries and departments of the central government.
Applied Research and Innovation for Small Enterprises (ARISE)
- To promote innovation in a phased manner in the MSME/Start-up sector AIM will be launching ARISE along with partner Ministries so that great research ideas are converted to viable innovative prototypes followed by product development and commercial deployment.
Mentorship and Partnerships – with Public, Private sector, NGOs, Academia, Institutions
- To enable all the initiatives to succeed, AIM has launched the “Mentor India – The Mentors of Change” programme, in collaboration with the public sector, corporates and institutions, to support all the initiatives of the mission.
Why in the news?
- Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog recently launched AIM-PRIME (Program for Researchers on Innovations, Market-Readiness & Entrepreneurship), an initiative to promote and support science-based deep-tech startups & ventures across India.
AIM along with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) has launched this nationwide program which will be implemented by Venture Center – a non-profit technology business incubator.
- The program is open to technology developers (early-stage deep tech start-ups, and scientists/ engineers/ clinicians) with strong science-based deep tech business ideas.
- The program is also open to CEOs and Senior incubation managers of AIM Funded Atal Incubation Centers that are supporting deep tech entrepreneurs.
Significance of the program
- The benefits of this program are aimed at addressing specific issues through training and guidance over a period of 12 months.
- Candidates selected for the program will get access to in-depth learning via a comprehensive lecture series, live team projects, exercises, and project-specific mentoring.
- They will also have access to a deep tech startup playbook, curated video library, and plenty of peer-to-peer learning opportunities.
- The AIM-PRIME program is specifically tailored for the rapid scaling up of deep-tech science ventures in India, providing not just the necessary intellect and support but also the exposure they rightly deserve.