In 2007, Stanford University began a multi-year partnership with the government of India to establish the Stanford-India Biodesign (SIB) program (previously funded by NCIIA), the goal of which was to promote medical technology innovation and create novel medical devices for the poor of India. Phase I of SIB was a five-year pilot with the aim of developing one center (in New Delhi) as a “prototype” SIB center. The center has been internationally recognized for its approach to training innovators in the process of creating novel medical technologies for the poor, with three novel medical devices developed and one new company formed. The Government of India is now enthusiastic to commence Phase II, in which additional SIB centers will be developed. However, India can only fund in-India expenses. This grant supports the launch of Phase II, which includes continuing to enable Stanford medical, engineering and business students to pursue clinical immersion within India, creating the “India Biodesign Sourcebook” as an open source resource for medtech innovators, and advising in the creation of two to five new India Biodesign centers within India.
Two NCIIA E-Teams, Greenlight Planet and Socialite, were recently featured in a story in The Economist focused on solar lighting for the poor. Greenlight Planet is selling its solar-charged, battery-powered LED lantern, the Sun King, in China, India and Africa. Cooper Union has been working with rural communities in northern Ghana on a solar lantern project since 2006.