scaling up grassroots innovation to millions: China Innovation Network, partner of HBN at TUFE shows the way


zhu liu 4 1






just returned from china, met some very interesting example of partnership between informal sector grassroots innovator like liu (who failed three times in scaling up his innovations, or maturing them) and then got in touch through local adminstration with Zhu, an entrepreneur. Now this briquette stove will be scaled up to 20k per month and then a million a year. Hubei province will be distributing more than 7 million such stoves to reduce carbon footprint and increase energy efficiency. TUFE centre for entrepreneurship and innovation, Tianjin and twin centre of grassroots innovation led by prof zhang LIyan is documenting the case in collab with Honeybee Network Nitw

we need to learn from this example how local distriuct adminstration plays an important role in linking innovators with entrepreneur ( we do it through NIF and HBN at national level but we need the role of Distt Innov Fund amplified in it), he has a team of three partners, all of them have joined company; he will also get 50 yuan per stove in addition to 250k yuan per year for three people. The public procurement is giving traction to the innovator who is getting finance form banks as well, and has set up world class facilities. India still has to declare a preference for indigenous innovation in public procurement. in fact we have a bias against the innovators because we ask for such high prior turnover figures for large tender that a start up company can never compete. While HBN and IIMA are helping China in building China Innovation Network (CHIN), we also have something valuable to learn from them. (


Visiting Faculty, IIM Ahmedabad & IIT Bombay and an independent thinker, activist for the cause of creative communities and individuals at grassroots, tech institutions and any other walk of life committed to make this world a more creative, compassionate and collaborative place