Through its work in the two Indian states Andhra Pradesh and Arunachal Pradesh, the Berkeley Haas Smart Village team has identified the below challenges. We are now calling Nordic startups and scaleups to come up with good solutions. We are looking for:
- Existing Nordic solutions that can solve any of the pain points
- Ideas of new digital solutions and business models
Challenges to solve in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India:
CHALLENGE 1 – Uberization of the farming equipment
The majority of the farmers in Andhra Pradesh face the problem of missing equipment -as most of the equipment required are costly and aren’t used very frequently. In a survey conducted by the Smart Village team in Andhra Pradesh, 25% of 10000 farmers expressed that they lack relevant agricultural gear and are not able to purchase new equipment as costs are too high. Consequently, inefficient operations arise when farmers are more dependent on labor instead of leveraging efficient farming equipment.
No.of farmers in AP: 5486972
Farmers interested in this model : 1400000
Farmers willing to rent their equipment : Yes
The solution should provide a platform for the farmers to rent the equipment at an affordable price with an ease. A farmer should also be able to list equipment so that other farmers can rent it, creating an extra income for the farmer.
CHALLENGE 2 – Telemedicine (lack of proper healthcare facilities)
Governmental healthcare facilities are insufficient, so even for a small ailment/regular check ups, villagers need to consult private hospitals. Millions of people in rural areas are not covered by insurance, so the cost is high.
Market Size : 3797400
Per Village : 3 797 400
Willingness to pay: Yes
Average fee of consultation: Rupees 100-150
The solution should provide a way to improve the healthcare in the villages by providing them access to cost effective and high quality facilities. It should provide them access to doctors using digital tools and get their preliminary diagnosis done. We’re targeting a telemedicine type of a portal here.
CHALLENGE 3 - Farmers lack proper soil and crop advisory (Precision Farming)
31% of the 10000 farmers surveyed by the Smart Village team in Andhra Pradesh -do not receive information like soil or crop advisory and analysis. Only 7% of the farmers expressed satisfaction with the existing services on this. Currently this service is being provided by the government through agriculture officers free of cost, but only 27% of the farmers are able to avail it. The majority of the farmers still depend on the ancestral knowledge or the information from fellow farmers.
No. of farmers in AP: 5486972
Farmers interested in this model: 86% of the surveyed farmers
Existing providers: Government of Andhra Pradesh
Cost: Currently free
Efficiency: 93% of the surveyed farmers rated it to be average or below average
CHALLENGE 4 – Education
Digital inclusion in the education system to enhance the learning experience in the classrooms. The solution should also focus on various others parameters like:
1. Enhancing students & teachers interaction
2. Improving the teacher quality
3. Parents -Teacher interaction
4. Involving paradigms like design thinking
CHALLENGE 5 - Platform to provide access to rural artisans & weavers to sell their products in International markets
No. of artisans & weavers in Andhra Pradesh : 1898700
Market potential: $1 Billion
Existing platforms and models: several players but none of them has been able to reach the grassroot level.
CHALLENGE 6 – Waste Management
Andhra Pradesh is a fast growing state in terms of technology, innovations etc. However waste management is getting worse, especially in the villages. People living in the villages are simply throwing away the wet and dry trash on the roads and in neighbours surroundings. There are no end solutions from the government.
Villages are polluted with plastic bottles, bags and covers. In some villages, the drain system is blocked because the trash is dumped.
The state is facing serious environmental degradation and public-health risk due to the contamination of water resources near uncontrolled dumping sites. Generation of leachate, gas, odour, noise, dust, potential fire hazards etc. are common environmental problems, that cause threats to human health and nature.
Lack of cooperation, funding, legislation and other co-variables result in an inefficient solid waste management system.
CHALLENGE 7 – Tourism / education
Andhra Pradesh has a huge potential for eco- tourism but the sector faces challenges like high cost of tourist accommodations, missing experiential tourism and limited online platforms to access global markets. There is a need for start-ups and technologies to empower villagers to set up homestays /immersive tourism and to attract a global audience by promoting the state.
CHALLENGE 8 – Animal Husbandry
Andhra Pradesh has many Murrah (Traditional Wild Buffalo). At the time of physical verification, the villagers are doing fraudulent activities by showing neighbours buffalos in their fields and using the sanctioned amount for their personal purpose. Due to lack of unique id on the buffaloes, those malpractices are continuing.
Andhra Pradesh is also famous for production of cattle, poultry and fish. Especially fisheries lack a proper tracking/monitoring system of equipment.
Challenges to solve in the state of Arunachal Pradesh, India
CHALLENGE 1 – Water & Sanitation
In some parts of Arunachal Pradesh the drinking water is bad. The water is turbid, contains iron and mud (the turbidity rate is more than 800 NTU in some areas) and is unfit for consumption.
– decentralized technologies that can help the marginalised communities to get access to clean water.
– some areas of Arunachal Pradesh are suffering from poor water management system which affects agriculture and basic needs of people
– solutions to gear up the water distribution system.
Due to high prices (Rs. 20/litre) of bottled water, most of the villagers use bio-sand filters or boil water for consumption. This has lead to spread diseases.
CHALLENGE 2 – Waste Management
Arunachal Pradesh is urbanizing at a rapid pace and hence a large amount of waste is generated. Currently, no garbage collection and management mechanism is being followed and the waste generated in households is incinerated or thrown away in water bodies.
– waste management solutions
– technology to get rid of waste
Currently there is no entity working in the state to solve this problem and the state government is taking initiatives to tackle this. Total waste to be treated: 221150 tons per year.
CHALLENGE 3 – Education
Performance of schools and students in Arunachal Pradesh are far behind the national average. There is no region specific course in the syllabus and there is no proper monitoring system for the teachers. The involvement of parents in children’s learning process is very weak.
Technologies and solutions to improve teacher quality, teacher monitoring system, child assessment, parent involvement, region-specific reading material and improved kindergarten education.
No technological interventions are being done and the percentage of untrained teachers in the state is on rise. Students clearing the high school examinations is on decline which is a result of several parameters.
CHALLENGE 4 – Internet Connectivity
Internet connectivity in the state is extremely poor and there are several villages in the state where there is no cellular connectivity at all. The hilly terrains and extreme weather conditions make it difficult to deploy conventional methods of providing network.
– an economical and reliable communication system to connect the people in these villages to the rest of the world.
The Government is bringing in technologies to create the internet infrastructure in the state. Currently pivoting a technology called “AirJaldi Networks”. Companies working in the domain can be tested under the Smart Village Program after a feasibility analysis.
CHALLENGE 5 – Fisheries
Arunachal Pradesh has a huge potential for fisheries, considering the climate, high consumption rate and the high import of fish from the neighboring states of Andhra Pradesh and Assam.
-solutions to encourage villagers to start fish breeding centers and implement alternative techniques to grow local fish ponds.
CHALLENGE 6 – Tourism & Hospitality
Arunachal Pradesh has a huge potential for eco-tourism, especially in regions like Tawang and Ziro. However, the sector faces challenges like high cost of tourist accommodations, missing experiential tourism and limited online platforms to access global markets.
Start-ups and technologies to empower villagers to set up homestays / immersive tourism and attract a global audience by promoting the state through various marketing techniques.
No. of tourists in the year 2017-2018: 160000 (Tawang)
Average Hotel Price: Rs.1000 – 2000
No. of hotels & other facilities: To be provided soon
Companies working in this domain: The Government is taking initiatives to increase the tourist footfall in the state.
CHALLENGE 7 – Utilize the bamboo resources in the state
Arunachal Pradesh has a huge production capacity of Bamboo, also known as golden grass. There are more than 75 species of Bamboo available and a major chunk of the population use it for the creation of daily utility items and handicraft products.
– collaborations for market link and value addition as well as technologies to engineer the Bamboo and boost the industry.
CHALLENGE 8 – Road Connectivity
Road connectivity in the state is extremely poor, a problem which is aggravated by the inhospitable hilly terrains. In addition, long spells of rains wash off the existing roads and hamper any construction activities. The situation is worst in rural areas where people have to walk for miles to fulfill their day to day activities and face huge difficulties during emergency situations.
– solutions to increase the connectivity of villages (people and goods)
CHALLENGE 9 – Platform to provide global market access (E-commerce)
There are 26 tribes in Arunachal Pradesh and more than 110 subtribes. Each of these tribes and subtribes has its own distinct culture and distinct style of weaving. Almost every household in the villages has a loom, and mastery in weaving is considered as a desirable quality for young brides. Despite the skills available the Arunachal handlooms haven’t been able to find an industrial scale and many artisans are shifting to other professions because of low returns. There is a huge opportunity to connect global markets where it will be appreciated and paid for.
There is no platform that is selling these products in the national and international markets. Despite the high quality and craftsmanship, the products are not able to get a fair price.
Market Potential: Rs.58000000
CHALLENGE 10 -Animal Husbandry (GPS Tracking)
Arunachal Pradesh has many Mithuns (Traditional Wild Buffalo) and they are considered assets. They usually stay in jungles and return to the owners ever 3 months or so. There is a huge problem of Mithuns thefts and quarrels in the community regarding the same. Owners are not able to find out when they get sick.
– a satellite-based system to track the animals and monitor their health.
No solution exists.