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'Collaborations vital for innovations'

BS Reporter  |  Chennai 

Ageing, climatic changes and diseases are the three major problems that science need to address today.
These are opportunities as well, and the economic model of the traditional industries should be changed for innovations in these areas to occur," said Dr C K Prahalad, professor of Corporate Strategy, Michigan Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, USA.
The renowned management theorist was delivering the 4th Dr Anji Reddy Gold Medal Oration on 'India as a source of innovation: turning constraints into opportunities' in Chennai.
Prahalad said scientific discoveries were becoming increasingly focused on narrow fields of specialisation. Commercial value can be created at the intersection of multiple scientific disciplines.
Citing the example of ICICI Prudential, one of the biggest insurance players in India, he said the company had, for the first time ever, launched a policy with a variable premium pricing structure targeted at diabetes patients.
This move shifted the focus from insurance to health. This was an innovation as well, since it also included a focus on lifestyle. The product's pricing was done with the help of an extensive study on patient databases at the Dr Mohan's Diabetes Specialities Centre. "Our next target should be HIV/AIDS," he said.
Emphasizing on the global opportunities, Prahalad said collaboration and co-creation across geographies were important for saving time, reducing risk and bringing down the cost while tackling different problems.
Resource sustainability, global warming and renewable energy sources were the key problem areas. However, these area also hold huge potential for global business and scientific collaboration, he added.

First Published: Tue, December 19 2006. 00:00 IST