Representative image by ha11ok from Pixabay

A design challenge for livelihood generation for the rural artisans in the Northeast India called WISSER Innovation Prize was launched on June 22. Targeted at designers and innovators from the Northeast region, the design challenge is being organised by The Hub Jorhat, Bosco Institute and Childaid Network in collaboration with Dhriiti-The Courage Within.

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The prize aims to identify product design solutions with pre-determined natural resources available in the Northeast which would enable generation of livelihoods for rural artisans across clusters.

The innovators/designers can apply as an individual or as a team (maximum 3 member teams). In case of individual innovators/designers, the applicant should be from one of the eight states of the Northeast and in case of teams, at least one of the team members should be a resident of any of the eight states of the Northeast region. Both students and practitioners can apply with their innovations/designs for the WISSER Innovation Prize.

The selected innovators/innovator teams would be awarded cash prizes worth approximately Rs 4 lakh and mentorship support by design and business mentors from across the globe.

“Four selected innovations would be provided cash prizes and mentorship support to support them in prototype development. The selected innovations would be piloted to build a complete product value chain as a micro enterprise cluster for rural artisans. The intent is to select design solutions with the given natural resources which have the potential to be produced by numerous micro/nano enterprises in rural areas and create livelihoods for rural artisans,” said Fr. Jerry Tom, Bosco Institute, Jorhat.

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WISSER Innovation Prize for designers and innovators from Northeast region
WISSER Innovation Prize for designers and innovators from Northeast region

“WISSER Innovation Prize will work in the form of product/design hackathon wherein solutions which can support local artisans earn their livelihoods are invited. We are calling for design innovation ideas from both students and practitioners (in the field of design and innovation) in two categories of products, category 1 being bamboo and cane and category 2 being natural fibres (water hyacinth, kauna grass, shital pati),” said Anirban Gupta, co-founder, Dhriiti – The Courage Within.

Jonas Pfaeffinger, advisor, Childaid Network said: “It is a pleasure to see the WISSER Innovation Prize being launched today and we would like to mention the vision, support and trust provided by the Wisser Family in Child Aid Network and the team behind the innovation prize to support the best design talents from the Northeast region to create livelihood solutions for rural artisan populace of the region.”

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