‘Interaction between industry, education and the state’ stimulates Bangalore’s potential for innovation



The latest KPMG report says Bangalore will be one of the top ten technology innovation hubs in the world over the next four years, putting it down to cities like Beijing, London, Shanghai and Tokyo. However, for Supriya Danda, India’s vice president and manager of Western Digital, the city has always been a talent center.

Apart from talent and opportunities, Bangalore is recognized for its engineering R&D incubators and accelerators, which enable every stage of technological development. Many multinational companies are operating seamlessly in the city with their built-in infrastructure, resource machinery and bright innovative minds, ”explains Danda.

Western Digital’s own research and development center in Bangalore has been “playing a key role in technological advancement” for many years.

Danda also says that many new graduates file patents within the first year of joining the company. Products developed from the brand’s R&D center in India include the ‘world’s fastest’ 1TB microSD card and the brand’s Black 3D NVMe SSD storage. Danda believes it is driven by a number of factors.

In Bangalore, it is further promoted by public and private sector investments in “access to better educational institutions, optimal government policies, accelerators and incubator programs and initiatives to improve a well-integrated ecosystem”.

“The development of technical skills and a skilled workforce has contributed to the strong concentration, employment and growth of R&D centers.

Supriya Danda, Western Digital, The path to becoming a global player in technology and innovation is challenging, and Danda says it is not without fierce competition. (Image source: Western Digital)

Launched earlier this year, Karnataka’s ER&D (Engineering Research and Development) Policy provides grants to global companies looking to set up new R&D facilities in the state or expand existing centers.

Up to 50 per cent of these rents up to Rs 2 crore or up to Rs 1,666 per employee, up to Rs. 20 lakh recruitment assistance and other benefits. If the R&D center invests more than 3,000 jobs or more than Rs 250 crore, more grants may be in the picture.

Above all, “the relationship between industry, education and the state is focused on creating better centers” that expedite Bangalore’s innovation and position the city as a key hub for further development, Danda explains.

Says Danda The path to being a global player in technology and innovation is challenging, it is not without fierce competition, but India is on the path of advancing as a serious competitor and I look forward to winning. He adds that this is “innovation and technological change” for future progress.

Tanda believes that today’s skills may not be relevant in the future and the key to overcoming an unexpected crisis is to develop an innovative ecosystem from the ground up.

It is up to the leaders to use their technical skills and help them expand their horizons, to actively cooperate in their long-term research endeavors and to encourage a culture of enthusiasm and experimentation, Danda explains. “As each country comes up with its own strengths, what we need to focus on is an integrated, collaborative and competitive approach to integrating into Business 4.0.”


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