IIT Kanpur will empower rural artisans through capacity building in the marketing domain.IIT Kanpur to aid rural artisans

Virendra Singh Rawat

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur will empower rural artisans through capacity building in the marketing domain.

The premier Institute has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian Institute of Crafts & Design (IICD), Jaipur to enhance the market appeal for various products.

The MoU was signed between Prof A R Harish, Dean of Research and Development, IIT Kanpur and Dr Toolika Gupta, Director, IICD. From IIT Kanpur’s end, the Ranjit Singh Rozi Shiksha Kendra (RSK) will oversee the implementation of the MoU mandates.

RSK was set up in 2021 with generous contribution from IIT K alumnus late Dr Ranjit Singh (BT/MME/1965), and his wife, Ms Martha Carreno.

RSK has been working with rural communities and artisans, aiming to uplift their livelihood.

It provides vital training and fosters entrepreneurship among rural youth, enabling them to produce high-quality apparel, bags, ‘potlis’ and pouches, clay pottery, and ready-to-eat snacks.

The primary objective of this collaboration is to preserve the traditional art and craft forms, develop enhanced processes, and create innovative designs for locally made products, thereby establishing a strong connection between artisans, craft communities, and consumers.

“By combining our expertise in research, design, and development with their rich legacy in the crafts and design sector, we aim to empower rural artisans, preserve traditional art forms, and create marketable products,” said Prof Harish.

The initial focus of the collaboration will be on working with a select group of potters from Bithoor area in UP to develop a product line with greater market appeal.

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Subsequently, the project will gradually encompass various products produced under the One District One Product (ODOP) scheme of the UP government.

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