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DREAM:IN Motive

Dreaming together from two parts of the world and bringing together design talent and funds to realise billions of dreams. We challenge the notion that ‘future thinking’ should be based on people’s needs. Our initiative, DREAM:IN, has explored what Indians are dreaming about. Its aim has been to create a dynamic database of dreams gathered in cities, towns and villages across India. They have been categorized, analyzed and shared with business leaders, educators, social entrepreneurs, policymakers and designers to devise a transformative and an inclusive future. The pilot project took place in two parts, beginning with the DREAM:IN Journey (8th – 19th January, 2011), which sent 101 students from various universities across the world to cities, towns and villages all over India to capture dreams. And, a DREAM:IN Conclave that brought together leaders, students, academicians, industrial czars and many more to analyze the captured dreams and create new scenarios and ventures that would serve as a solution to people’s dreams.

Parsons, The New School for Design, hosted its first annual fest between 7th and 28th May, 2011. There were guest lectures, exhibitions of student work, social events, shows, panel discussions, career workshops and extracurricular activities that aimed to inspire creativity. An integral and important part of this festival was the DREAM:IN presentation that took place on 10th May, 2011. The event was organized by DREAM:IN volunteers and earlier participants from Parsons. It was a result of the collaborative effort between Team India and Team New York. The event was a stepping stone and it officially took DREAM:IN to a global level. The event was open to the entire New York community. It was attended by students, financial experts, academicians, working professionals and other believers. The event kick started at the Kellen auditorium with videos of interviews done during the DREAM:IN Journey. As the guests arrived, the DREAM:IN Team encouraged them to share their dreams either by writing on the Dream Tree or by recording a dream at the video booth that was custom-made for the event. Sarah Ahmed, a senior student at Parsons, played host for the day.

The Opportunity: Designing for billions
Bruce Nussbaum, Fast Co. — Dreamcatalyst and Big Dreamer— explaining the opportunity that DREAM:IN offers for the billions of people in India. He spoke about the project in brief and offered the New York Community a chance to be a part of the initiative.

The Vision: What Indians are dreaming about
Sonia Manchanda— Director: Design, DREAM:IN— shared her vision about the project. [Video]

The Project: A crossroad for large scale innovation
Carlos Teixeira— Director: Networks, DREAM:IN— spoke about the open innovation system that described both the organizational and funding structure requirements for DREAM:IN. He also introduced the various believers and supporters of the project, without whom none of this would have been possible. This included Spread Education and Consulting, Idiom Design and Consulting Ltd., Nodes, Design Knowledge Network, Parsons The New School for Design, The School of Design Strategies, Future Group, Manipal University and Instituto Vivarta.

The Journey: 101 dreamcatchers, 25,000 km, 3,000 dreams
The speech was followed by a presentation by Natalie Wang—Student at Parsons, Dreamcatcher and Dreamscholar— and Rahul Vijaykumar— Project leader, DREAM:IN— of the various experiences that took place during the DREAM:IN Journey. They also spoke about planning the journey, the logistics involved, the Dreamcatching training workshops, process of Dreamcatching, personal experiences and social media and technology’s role during the Journey. Videos of the dreams were then screened, post which there was a short break.

The Conclave: 51 Investment Opportunities
After the break, Bruce, Ken Stevens— Dreamcatalyst, Heico Wesselius— Dreamleader and Margarita Fakih Name—Dreamscholar shared their experiences and learning from the DREAM:IN conclave. During the talk, the Dreamscape model and other ventures were showcased and discussed, thus giving a concrete insight about the Conclave and the potential of the DREAM:IN Initiative.

Two videos that elucidated this potential were showcased. The first one, “No Limits”— was an in-depth analysis of why people need to dream and how India is transforming into a place where dreams of the world can be soon realised. The second video, “I am India” — was a philosophical introduction to India, its people and its culture.

The Mission: Dream realization
Later, Carlos introduced new ventures and asked the audience to participate and become a part of the ventures and the DREAM:IN society. The audience were invited to join the initiative and become leaders by meeting experts and thought leaders from all across the globe. This would help them identify and adapt local insight for opportunities, starting up new ventures, raising funds and co-designing organisations. Seven main ventures were highlighted and discussed. They were: WEB: Women Empowerment Bank: By putting a new spin on existing financial models, the Women Empowerment Bank aims to change the perception of women’s education amongst families and society itself. W.E.B will peg the interest rates of its loans to the education level of individual women in the family therein reducing the interest rates when a woman pursues further education.

For example, when a girl enters primary school the interest rate of the family’s loan will be set at 15%. As the same girl advances through the education system, the interest rate would be reduced to 5% when she reaches college. This literal approach to giving women more financial power within the family also leads to a more inclusive system as it disregards race, age and caste to emphasize solely on education.

APNA SAPNA (Assurance): This concept marks the start of a revolution banking on a person’s dreams rather than tackling his needs/problems in order to create a better life. Instead of buying ‘insurance’ (e.g. negative connotation: assets for unfortunate circumstances), an individual can purchase ‘assurance’ through the Sapno Kae Masters/Apna Sapna program. This assurance comes in the form of Knowledge Service Hubs that educate and disseminate information for whatever genre one requires to grow and prosper. This includes knowledge in fields such as agriculture, education, health, livelihood, art & crafts, culture, etc that are provided through knowledge exchange partners (e.g. universities, hospitals, I.T industry, retailers). The initial model looks at a state-side pilot program wherein each village, there will be a center with at least two computers to serve the needs of its members. The pilot scheme targets groups such as farmers, housewives, artisans and children who seek to improve their general knowledge or have specific questions related to their field. Likewise, the members will also have the opportunity to impart their existing specialized knowledge in these fields back to the center. One virtual hub will serve a cluster of 50 villages each to collect information and specific needs from each center. These hubs will be connected to the state through power houses who will then process the data and transmit relevant personalized information back to the hubs/centers accordingly. With 30 states serving 400 hubs per state to 6 lakh villages, the potential market and vertical growth for these villages is tremendous even in a pilot run of 6 months - 1 year.. By charging a low monthly fee of Rs10 per person, the opportunity in revenue comes down to Rs. 5 million revenue and Rs 15 crore per state monthly. The additional revenue can even lead to these Centers being used as brokerage hubs. Ticket to Parliament: To get Indian youths more politically active, this interesting venture taps into the popularity of current reality TV shows on channels such as MTV and Bindass by producing a similar program tentatively titled ‘Ticket to Parliament’. Students compete on the show in a series of challenges related to public services and policies in order to win an opportunity become an intern in parliament. Each challenge will be shaped to impart the message that each person in society makes a difference by taking a stand and that even the little things count. In order to gain national awareness, the results will be based on a mix of judges and audience voting via mobile/internet. The production of the

series will be dependent on funding from corporations, government and media channels themselves with the returns based on advertisements and sponsorships. India Sports Portal: One of the key observations from the state of the nation is the increasing passion for sports amongst its youth. Within such a vast country though, there exists differing levels of knowledge, skills and aptitude which this idea seeks to bridge and literally create an ‘even playing field’ for Indian athletes to compete and excel. The Indian Sports Portal is social networking and information portal for male and female athletes across India to share and get updated on the latest news and events within all sporting realms. For a small fee to be part of the network, members can attend offline workshops by national athletes, get discounts from partnering sports brands, learn nutrition and fitness tips from experts and compare their achievements to their peers. By shaping sports as a ‘religion’ in itself (e.g. with iconography, theme songs, national pride, etc), this will encourage a greater interest and commitment from aspiring athletes and also become a talentpool for scouts eager to find the next sports hero. Pop-up Fun School: The adage of making learning fun for children plays a key role in this initiative — especially since existing school enrollment in rural regions is inconsistent at best. The question raised becomes how do we make learning continuous in the face of low-incomes, unsupportive families and gender inequalities? The Pop-up Fun School attempts to solve this issue by combining education and entertainment in a mobile environment. Through partnerships with NGOs and game companies, the pop-up schools will travel in modified trailers to perform educational skits and encourage participation in games and activities that impart knowledge and build skills. Families will also be encouraged to join in the fun through craft classes and entertainment for their demographic. As these schools work with local performance groups, local teachers and college students to generate content, the constant traveling between villages also allows the schools to pick up on the villagers’ educational needs and culture in order to shape their curriculum accordingly. This ensures that students learn relevant and timely material which they can work on until the next scheduled visit of the pop-up school. Sports Army: Despite the popularity of games like cricket in India, sports is generally seen as non-viable career option and a luxury to those in rural communities. In comparison, the military and police force are deemed as highly respected and desirable fields to pursue instead. By adapting this mind-set with the concept of a ‘sports army’, this social initiative aims to inculcate the benefits of sports participation amongst children in rural communities. Children will be encouraged to

join the sports army in order to pick up social interaction skills, discipline, self-confidence, teamwork as well as generally improving their health and nutrition. This NGO organization will work with young volunteers to coach teams of village children from 6 - 15 years old in both sports and other activities designed to improve the welfare of the community (e.g. village chores, social responsibilities). Health Phone: How does one ensure access to basic healthcare in a nation of 8 billion people despite geographical and socioeconomic hurdles? By leveraging existing communication tools and redefining healthcare provision itself. India has one of the highest mobile penetration rates in the world and most, if not all residents will have cellphone access. Through the set-up of a basic information helpline that serves to educate and diagnose symptoms of common afflictions, this streamlines the process for an individual to identify and receive help in an affordable manner. This service can be rolled out as a basic kit per village which will also include first aid manuals and reference guides that can be integrated into an application on phones. When an individual calls the helpline, he will have access through various language options and differing levels of help (e.g. immediate connection to ambulance and doctors) based on urgency.

Open Innovation @ Parsons: The NY Hub
Carlos and Rahul presented the DREAM:IN portal — an open web platform that allows users to share their dreams with the world, DREAM:IN Centre — a state-of-the-art facility in Bangalore that will incubate projects and become a hub for innovation, DREAM:IN business model — that explains what funds were needed, how they will be used, what the various targets are and the various on-ground DREAM:IN activities. Towards the end, the event seemed like a promising start to DREAM:IN worldwide and the audience were updated about its activities in various countries such as Brazil, Chile and Sri Lanka. This led to a lively Q&A session, which gave interesting perspectives about the project. Some wondered why India should be seeking help from foreigners instead of supporting themselves, however, it was clarified that the majority of the dreamcatchers were from India and only a few of them were from abroad.

There was also a talk about setting up a full scale DREAM:IN centre in New York with Parsons’ support. Meanwhile, an educator and social entrepreneur suggested creating a mentorship programme for giving direction to social entrepreneurship and design thinking. Another person pointed out that a concept like DREAM:IN is not limited to India, it could be a global portal for idea generation. Some were of the opinion that tradition as well as innovation must be combined to realise these ventures. There was an agreement to mobilise clusters and sources for funds.

Others were looking to align their education models with this initiative. And, a few others wanted an event specifically for financial sector and investors to refine important information, as they sensed potential here. Various other questions were raised, like how to create a start up when a person does not have past knowledge but wants to be involved; how young is young to capture dreams; for those who volunteer can the year be considered as a gap year as it adds value to higher education; how are we protecting these ideas worth millions of dollars; can DREAM:IN be a form of nationalism, where Indians invest in the dreams of their nation; and how are we inviting venture capitalists. Reactions about DREAM:IN (via Twitter) below. Bruce Nussbaum’s Tweets: “#dreamin Building a pool of aspirations- dreams that connect to VCs and other enablers to build start-ups and NGOs to enable dreams.” “#dreamin Model mobilizes students and to capture the aspirations of people and shape startups and NGOs to enable those dreams.” “#dreamin Dream Catchers = design students who teamed up to travel 25,000 kilometers in India to identify, interview & film dreams.” “#dreamin Students used a Dream Catching Kit, like the Open IDEO toolkit, to do their ethnography in India.” “#dreamin Needed to recruit students from local areas who spoke the local Indian languages. All dreams were expressed in local language.” “#dreamin Panasonic provided rugged laptops to all the teams traveling thru India.” “#dreamin Before sending out the students, Idiom used Facebook to get to know them and for them to know each other.” “#dreamin Big Indian dreams? Education. Starting business. Women’s rights. Preserving traditional craft. Service to nation-army.” “#dreamin Refined thousands of dreams to 50 Dream Ideas. My group developed Edu-Cafe startup concept: Deliver education via Internet cafes.: “#dreamin Call for action! Pilot 3 ventures in India from DreamIn concepts to business plan and realty. Recruiting volunteers & financing.” “#dreamin conference--Sonia Manchanda, co-founder of India’s Idiom consultancy, is brilliant conceiver of D-VC. Dream/Design-Venture Capital.” “#dreamin conference: Sonia Manchanda, co-founder of India’s Idiom, is the next C.K. Prahalad. She’s the one to watch for new ideas.”

Carlos Teixeria’s Tweets: “@DREAMIN_NY @DREAMIN_Team To bring global design expertise to work on local dreams and aspirations” “@DREAMIN_NY @DREAMIN_Team My vision? CALL FOR ACTION. We need to recruit 15 young leaders to realize 3 DREAM:IN Ventures” “@DREAMIN_NY @DREAMIN_Team Helping people engage with unfamiliar situations and teaching them how to make “what if...?” questions” “@DREAMIN_NY @DREAMIN_Team I want leaders to have a passion for people, the desire to empower the dreamers, and investors to become believers” “@DREAMIN_Team @DREAMIN_NY Tomorrow I want to bring Indian’s dream to NY, and the global design community to dream about India” “@DREAMIN_Team @DREAMIN_NY One design at a time for billions of people”

Sonia Manchanda’s tweets: “@DREAMIN_NY Basically we realised that facts and figures are good indicators but dreams are even better since dreams have no limits.” “@DREAMIN_NY Give us infinite opportunities to imagine tomorrow and create it, with the people, for the people!” “@DREAMIN_NY People are our biggest problem and our biggest opportunity in India!” “#dreamin Many innovations/publications/activities and even ventures to compress the time from mind to market. From dream to realization!” “#dreamin mobilizing both talent clusters and sources of funds.” “Philanthropy for Dreamseeding activities. Sponsorship for journeys/ conclaves. Microseeding enterprises! Venture funding for the Portal!” “#dreamin @DREAMIN_NY Young is learning and open!” “@DREAMIN_NY Next step is meeting investors in Brazil/22 May. India next. USA next. And the portal is going to be terribly exciting + global!”

Tweets of the DREAM:IN Team from New York: “@DREAMIN_Team is a form of nationalism.” “Do you believe culture, economic and politics affect the way we dream? #dreamin @CarlosTeixeira4” “Insight into dream in with @brucenussbaum, mentions that he was blown away intellectually in India” “DreamIN is an economic social and political model, it changes the

conversation about everything we thought. @brucenussbaum” “In America the power of students and their skills is undermined, dreamin allows students to have a database of dreams @brucenussbaum” “how do we look at dreams and aspirations and design for that @ CarlosTeixeira4” “@heico where does the innovation come from? it comes from the people? who are you engaged with? “ “@heico people as catalysts for dreams.” “Ken Stevens- A dream is an idea that has just begun to breathe.” “Design at its best, experienced in India- Ken Stevens” “dreams are deeper than needs. Design, Innovate, to lead tomorrow.” “12.6 million square miles... India is the future of the world.” “@DREAMIN_Team could we insert a dream year to value add to our higher education?” “@DREAMIN_Team is a venture which combines institutions, organizations and individuals to people and their dreams” “dreamin helps establish successful design network to dream believe and realize! #dreamin” “Director of @Design_IDIOM @sonia_manchanda about “new stream of collective consciousness and the best reality check ever.” cc @dreamin_ NY” “we need to bring global expertise in large scale to local needs, local expectations and local aspirations - @CarlosTeixeira4” “How do designers work with venture capitalists on phase zero for social good.” @carlosteixeira4” “Open Innovation System - a model for fluid and fragmented markets@ CarlosTeixeira4 cc @DREAMIN_NY” “Dreamscape -self sustained living, social responsibility, greenspace from @DREAMIN_NY + @heico” “More specifically, how are we using open innovation for ideas that are worth millions of dollars of intellectual property? @brucenussbaum @ carlosteixeira4” “DREAM:IN is probably the best project, talk, idea I’ve seen presented at Parsons. Very excited! @carlosteixeira @DREAMIN_NY @dreamin_team”

As the event ended, it became clear that DREAM:IN NY/Parsons marked the first step into setting up a full-scale DREAM:IN operations in New York. More questions and constructive feedback from the audience was an indicator of the excitement and belief in DREAM:IN’s potential.

It has helped to make a new shift from traditional ventures to a design venture-capital model. As we move forward with an open call for young entrepreneurs to participate and realise the highlighted DREAM:IN ventures, the main mantra that resonates amongst believers in New York and India is that it’s time to not just be inspired, but to become inspiring. Participate: DREAMIN_NY@dreamin.in Read: dreaminnewyork.wordpress.com Follow: www.twitter.com/#!/DREAMIN_NY Learn: dreamin.in Watch: www.vimeo.com/dreamin Belong: www.facebook.com/dreaminteam