Become a change agent!

Become a change agent!

– Sustainable innovation through the use of entrepreneurial methods in different contexts


Work together with rural Indian innovators and entrepreneurs to develop real life solutions with real life impact, and learn about sustainable innovation and entrepreneurial methods. 

There are numerous sustainability related challenges affecting people, the environment and society across the world. In order to act on these challenges, we must identify and understand them, develop solutions for them, put together the necessary resources, deal with uncertainty and risk, and not the least - act. A person who takes this responsibility is a "change agent".

In this village, you will develop an understanding of these global challenges, and how having an entrepreneurial attitude can help in devising sustainable solutions and take you towards becoming a change agent. Approximately one week of this intensive village will be in India, where you will work with rural innovators and entrepreneurs to find solutions to the challenges they face within their context.

Kvinne i sari jobber på byggeplass. Foto.Fargerik tuk-tuk. Foto.Ung jente i sari legger murstein ut for soltørking. Foto.

As per the EIT survey, 100% of the students who were part of this village in January 2020 would recommend a friend to participate in this village. 

Relevant expertise

Students from all academic communities are welcome in the village. We need knowledge from different disciplines in order to develop solutions to the global challenges. We will provide context specific expertise, as well as different perspectives on becoming a change agent, and entrepreneurial methods in the course. There is therefore no requirement of any specific prior courses.

About the village

The global sustainability challenges may be linked to different issues, for example, to access to clean water, energy, poverty or climate change. By understanding the drivers of the challenges you can experiment with and test alternative solutions through fast and iterative processes in different contexts and for different situations.  In this village, you may deal with questions like: How are resource requirements different between a context like Norway and a context like rural India? How do you price a product that is an improvement on current technology but needs to be affordable for the poor? How do you identify different interest groups that you must take into account and work with to implement the solutions you propose? How can bring a product from a village in India to a global market?

We want to work with real problems and provide real sustainable solutions to the challenges that affect people, the environment and society. Further, it is important that these solutions will be able to continue to live even after the course is completed. With this in mind, we have identified innovators and entrepreneurs who are in the process of developing context specific solutions to some of these challenges faced by them. You will have the opportunity to travel to India and work on aspects of these solutions along with the innovators and entrepreneurs and with guidance from context experts. In the process you will have the opportunity to reflect on how interdisciplinary teams work and how solution-oriented thinking helps in developing an entrepreneurial attitude. The work you do in this course will provide specific and relevant inputs to the innovators and entrepreneurs and help them improve/develop their idea or product.

The village is managed in collaboration with NTNU's School of Entrepreneurship at the Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management (IØT), and Engage - Center for Engaged Education through Entrepreneurship and you will have access to the tools, concepts and perspectives developed by students and the academic staff here. The village is supported a project funded by the Norwegian Research Council called Network for Engaged Entrepreneurship in Developing Economies (NEED). You will have access to the knowledge of and context specific guidance from the Indian partners in this network.

In 2020, this village took all the students to India for ten days to facilitate direct interaction with the innovators and entreprenurs and the context. Due to Covid-19 we are unable to travel to India for the 2021 course, however, you will have online access to the innovators and entrepreneurs as well as support staff from our Indian partner organization. This will include virtual "site visits" to see the innovations and businesses in action, as required.

Testing of alternative forms of assessment

In this village, alternative forms of assessment will be tested for the project report. Usually, the student groups write a project report that counts 50% of the grade in the subject, but here the project report can be a poster, a poster presentation, a product/service a feasibility/market report or a combination of these. The mandatory oral presentation of the project will be included in the assessment.

14 sep 2020

Village Facts - TIØ4858

Village Facts - TIØ4858

Course code: TIØ4858
Village title: Become a change agent! Sustainable innovation through the use of entrepreneurial methods in different contexts
Type: Intensive
Language: English
Village supervisor: Vivek Sinha
Semester: Spring 2021

Important information about EiT:

Important information about EiT:

  • The focus on teamwork skills and group processes is the unique feature of Experts in Teamwork (EiT).
  • EiT's teaching methods depend on the contribution and presence of every participant throughout the semester. For this reason, attendance is compulsory on every village day.
  • In contrast to many courses, the first few days are especially important in EiT. During this period, the team members get to know each other and discuss what each individual can contribute. You will also draw up the compulsory cooperation agreement and start preparing a shared research question.
  • For additional information about Experts in Teamwork, see the page for students.