The Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M) has launched the third edition of Carbon Zero Challenge (CZC), which is focussed on resource depletion and pollution accelerated by climate change and biodiversity losses.
This is an all-India eco-innovation and entrepreneurship competition that aims to “accelerate the lab-to-market transition of eco-innovations in India” by funding their development from proof-of-concept and lab-scale solutions to working prototypes or pilots.
Shortlisted teams will get funding and mentorship support to establish startups and a chance to take their idea to the market. Winners will also get Rs 10 lakh as a startup seed grant, as well as assistance such as access to incubation resources and angel and venture capital aid.
The event was launched on Wednesday, where Prof V Kamakoti, director of IIT-M, said that the institute also plans to establish a ‘School of Sustainability’ to work towards UN SDGs. He also announced that IIT-M will open up its patenting mechanism to the contest participants.
“The Institute has a robust incubation ecosystem that can help start-ups mature and convert their ideas into a viable business,” he added.
What is the theme this year?
The competition will focus on CRC, or ‘circularity in resource conservation’, with the idea to highlight the need to balance demand and earth’s supply, as well as rethink design and materials to enable resource reduction, recycling, recovery, and reuse.
Highlighting the key focus areas of CZC 2022, principal coordinator Indumathi M Nambi said, “The competition will focus its target applicant pool on teams that have already demonstrated and validated lab-scale proof of concept, with a clear technological advancement.”
An IIT-M press release noted that around 100 teams are expected to be shortlisted, and of them, 25 will be given prototype funding up to Rs 5 lakh per team.
The teams will be trained to “sharpen their market orientation and entrepreneurial quotient, and develop the sustainability report for their product to market it as a clean-tech company”.
They will also interact with experts in the industry and academia to hone their technical and business skills.
How to apply?
Visit this link to learn more details of the competition. The last date of application is 24 September 2022.