India ranks 57th in the Global Innovation Index. Yes we are proud to be ahead of the likes of Morocco, Albania, Srilanka, Rwanda, Pakistan and Yemen. But isn’t innovation index an indicator of the quality of brains in the country?
It irks me as to why European countries and even small nations like Israel and Qatar consistently perform better than us. A few years ago, I had attended an Edward De Bono workshop. There we were taught a tool called ‘PO’.
Bono asked us – what are the key elements that are required for running a restaurant. The audience replied – kitchen, menu, chef, waiter, bill and so on. Bono asked us to think of a restaurant without kitchen where food could be brought from home and eaten in a better ambiance; think of a restaurant without a menu, where food is prepared based on the suggestions given by the customers; think of a restaurant without a waiter, where college students could volunteer to provide impeccable service.
These are absolutely out of the box suggestions. Could our minds accept these radical thoughts? Since time immemorial, we have been stuck with Ramayana, Mahabharata, Traditional music and dance forms. We don’t seem to be getting outside the stereotype ‘pattimandrams’ and debates. Whereas the west has innovated and progressed from Superman, Batman to Avengers. We still seem to be obsessed with ‘Hanu-man’.
I don’t deny the importance of culture. We should indeed be proud of our rich heritage and culture. My moot point is, we should not be stuck in our traditions and rote learning passed down generations at the cost of innovation.
In the last 21 years I have interacted with over a million students through TRICHY PLUS. My constant observation has been that young minds have been hardened and calcified though imitative learning. It is the need of the hour to infuse our young minds with ‘PO’ for isn’t education the foundation towards innovation?