KOCHI: Though there is no dearth of talent in Kerala, the lack of connectivity between academics and startups is posing hurdles to the startup ecosystem, said UNEP Disaster Risk Reduction chief Muralee Thummarukudy on Wednesday.“There is a need for clustering in the engineering sector for effective utilisation of talent,” Thummarukudy said during an interaction with young entrepreneurs at the #Startup Charcha organised by Maker Village at Kerala Technology Information Zone, Kinfra Hi-Tech Park here.
The impact of cyclone Ockhi, which claimed several lives, could have been minimised using technology for disaster management, he said. “We are still unable to find the number of fishermen who were at the sea when Ockhi ravaged the coastal areas,” he said.“Some say fishermen are not adaptive to modern technology. But we should remember fishermen in Kerala had attracted global attention by using mobile phones to ensure better price for their catch. They were able to know the price of fish at each market before landing at the harbour and sold their catch at the place which paid them maximum price.
An international agency had conducted a study on the use of technology by fishermen in Kerala to increase their profit,” Thummarukudy said. However, the technology which offers more profit becomes popular in the market soon. The world is changing rapidly and computers are taking over human jobs, he said.
“A study said around 47 per cent of traditional jobs will vanish by 2040. The possibilities are unlimited and startups should evolve global ideas,” he said.
The future of startups was in healthcare, entertainment and mobility as the population of elders will increase in India, Thummarukudy said. “Startups should come up with innovative ideas which can change society,” said Muralee. Film producer and actor Prakash Bare and Maker Village CEO Prasad Balakrishnan Nair also spoke.