NID for NE designs
Motif clinic to help local industry
- National Institute of Design to provide inputs for product patterns ROOPAK GOSWAMI
Guwahati, Nov 8: The micro, small and medium enterprises sector in the region is poised to get a facelift, design-wise, with the proposed setting up of a “design clinic” by the National Institute of Design (NID) in Guwahati.
The Ahmedabad-based premier design school of the country has agreed to set up a regional centre in Guwahati and a memorandum of understanding will be signed on November 11 with the Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE) under the design clinic scheme.
NID has been appointed as the nodal agency to implement the scheme, which was launched last year by the development commissioner, ministry of micro, small and medium enterprises, for providing design expertise to micro, small and medium enterprises in the Northeast.
The design clinic is a tested strategic model of design intervention, where a solution to an existing design problem is diagnosed and remedial steps suggested by a multidisciplinary team of design experts. In this scheme, value addition to an idea or a concept is imparted simply through interaction, thereby reducing related costs.
The primary focus of the clinic, which will be the first of its kind in the region, will be on design development for the products of artisans, individual units and clusters, a majority of which are being implemented by the IIE. The institute is involved in implementation and technical support to 22 clusters spread all over the region. A cluster is a group of enterprises and organisations having common business opportunities and threats within a given geographical area. The defining variable is the product or service, which generally includes a product range.
“Better designs will make the products more marketable and saleable, helping the artisans earn a better livelihood,” an official of the institute said. The institute will also provide office space and administrative support to operationalise the centre and implement the scheme.
The IIE has been working on improving the product designs with the help of some local designers.
The official said the convergence of two premier national organisations will bring in accelerated development for the micro, small and medium enterprises and help mitigate the scarcity of qualified designers in the region.
Under the design clinic scheme, design sensitisation seminars, awareness programmes and design projects will be held. This will help to generate awareness about design methodology and approach for the sector.
The official said the opening of the extension centre for the Northeast zone would help bring the micro and small sector in the region and design expertise onto a common platform and provide expert advice and solutions on real-time design problems, resulting in continuous improvement and value addition for existing products. “This will help bring design exposure to the doorstep of the large number of small and medium clusters in the northeastern region,” he said.
The micro, small and medium enterprises sector in the country is a major contributor to the GDP growth, accounting for about 8 per cent.

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