How Techstars is solving global challenges?

Do you have an idea but don’t know how to build your startup?

Well, the Startup Weekend is going to happen this month in Rajkot on 28th-30th June.

What is Startup Weekend?

It is an event on delivering an awesome entrepreneurial experience for people who have ideas and want to make the business or product out of that. It is 54 hours actionable framework where participants can execute on their ideas from pitching it to team building and finally making the minimal viable product.

This time Techstars has brought the Startup Weekend edition Global Sustainable Revolution. In this edition there are 15 global challenges is chosen which we are facing. So in this edition entrepreneurs and problem solvers will try to solve these challenges through their ideas by creating sustainable products and solutions.

More Exciting about Startup Weekend is…

All around the world, more than 50 cities have hosted these Startup Weekends with the help of local organizers and startup weekend facilitators. Local initiatives are together creating a global impact – a big movement towards a sustainable world!

Encouraging disruption for a much better future :

Startup Weekend is an overall network for entrepreneurship and the ideal method to achieve these objectives. This version will rejoin a great many members driven by the will to make, venture up, motivate and be propelled. Besides, it will likewise offer them the chance to understand that they are all change creators.

For creating better and quality future participants will develop solutions around the major challenges proposed by  #GSWSR

1) Build eco-conceived products & reverse planned obsolescence

2) Change from a consumer business model to a user business model

3) Extend Products’ Lifetime

4) Upcycling

5) Substitute the disposable by the sustainable

6) Foster local production and local distribution

7) Reduce food waste

8) Build sustainable agriculture and a sustainable food industry

9) Build highly energy efficient products and systems

10) Produce sustainable energy

11) (Re)Build sustainable buildings

12) Design resilient, smart and inclusive cities

13) Design Fintech for inclusive sustainable finance and markets

14) Build the future of sustainable transportation

15) Foster education on sustainability

Let me brief you about some of the challenges :

Challenge 1:- Build eco-conceived products & reverse planned obsolescence

Creating products with materials which are sustainable, as nearby as could reasonably be expected, and extend the lifetime of these products however much as could reasonably be expected.

Challenge 2: – Change from a consumer business model to a user business model

Build a business model that satisfies more needs with fewer resources using two main concepts:

   i) The sharing economy which is about sharing the use of assets often facilitated by a community based online platform.

  ii) The functional economy which is about selling a service instead of selling a good.

Challenge 3: – Extend Products’ Lifetime

Extending products’ life by three methods:

   i) Repairing products

   ii) Reconditioning products

   iii) Second-hand marketplaces

Challenge 4:- Upcycling

    Replace disposable items by a logistics using long lasting returnable items, or biodegradable items.

Challenge 5:-  Substitute the disposable by the sustainable

     Transform by-products, waste materials, useless, or unwanted products into new materials or products of better quality.

Creating sustainable and future problem proof solutions are the core of startup weekend global sustainable revolution.

So what are you waiting for let’s participate and build solutions for global challenges?

Why UN is pushing so hard for sustainable development goals

Sustainable development has been defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

All systems and societies naturally develop. However, In this day and age, development is moving at breakneck speeds, thanks to advancement in technology.

It’s about improving the well being of everyone wherever they are and achieving this milestone collectively. Sustainable development goals also want companies to expand, people to have the best jobs, everyone to afford nutritious foods wherever they live, quality and affordable education for everyone, freedom of speech without violence, and our economies to grow exponentially. They want to develop innovative technologies while keeping the environment safe.

Two decades ago, close to 40% of the population of the developing world lived in extreme poverty. Since then, the world has halved extreme poverty, with the UN’s Millennium Development Goals greatly contributing to this progress.

UN has adopted an ambitious 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Over the next fifteen years, countries will mobilize efforts to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind.

UN is helping in adopting global goals which in turn is helping individuals, organizations, and governments worldwide to agree on the direction – essentially, to focus on what really matters for our future.

Population is the main factor driving up sustainable development campaigns. So let’s have a look at the perspectives of why UN is pushing hard for SDG’s :

  • To provide adequate essential human needs – With the explosion of population, people will have to scramble for the limited life essentials like food, shelter, and water. Renewable & sustainable options should be utilized more
  • Agricultural requirement – Finding ways to feed more than 3 billion people can be staggering. Sustainable development focuses on sustainable agricultural methods such as effective seeding techniques and crop rotation to promote high yields while maintaining the integrity of the soil, which produces food for a large population.
  • Manage climate change – Sustainable development practices seek to reduce the use of fossil-based sources of fuel like oil, natural gas, and coal. Fossil fuel sources of energy are unsustainable since they are responsible for the emission of greenhouse gasses.
  • Financial stability – Sustainable development practices have the ability to create more financially sustainable economies across the globe. From the development of renewable energy technologies, development countries can create sustainable jobs
  • Sustain Biodiversity – Life ecosystem is designed in such a way that species depend on one another for survival. For instance, plants produce oxygen that humans need for respiration. Humans exhale carbon dioxide that plants need for growth and production. Unsustainable development practices like emission of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere kill many plant species. This is not good for humans. Therefore, Sustainable development practices encourage the use of renewable energy resources, and organic farming practices that do not emit any greenhouse gas to the atmosphere.

So, understand the importance of Sustainable Development goals, understand their framework and their agenda to help the nation.

Be a part of this wonderful Startup Weekend at Ahmedabad and help your nation and city grow , globally, nationally and locally!

Why Sustainable Development Goals aren’t working and how can we work around it


The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were born at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in 2012. The objective was to produce a set of universal goals that meet the environmental, political and economic challenges facing our world.

The SDGs replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which started a global effort in 2000 to tackle the indignity of poverty.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals came into effect in January 2016. They are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that each person enjoys peace and prosperity.

But there are lot of challenges in achieving these goals, which can be categorised into 3 main heads:

  • Instability, such as conflict between nations
  • Implementation, such as ensuring programmes fit the local context
  • Governance, such as political will to transform development programmes into sustainable long-term practices

The growing insecurity in our lives is due to lack of protection. The effects of these processes are most in the developing countries, where problems such as hunger, poverty, community stability and access to education and health are most accused.

While these goals show the complexity of attaining them , have you been wondering what they actually mean or how they work?

Let’s take an example here:

To get grade A+ in maths exam, what do you do?

You set a goal. Now this  goal can be achieved by studying all of the notes first, then sitting with somebody and carrying out the multiplication, division and addition process. So the same way these goals are attainable if people across the globe sit together and bring out an integrated approach.

The vision for a better world can be achieved by trying out these reflections:

  1. Don’t be disheartened or frightened

SDG’s aren’t about reinventing the wheel in any organisation, Every business is already fulfilling some part of SDG in the daily context like Goal 1,2,3, 5, 8 and 12

What you have to take care is which goals will impact the most and how? Getting an answer to how to any given situation will help out.

  1. Do not Focus on all 17 goals at a time

Don’t miss the meaningful action by applying all 17 goals at a time. Try finding out the relevant ones and exactly which SDG’s makes a massive difference.

  1. SDG’s adds value

The fact needs to be accepted that sustainability adds business value! Few organisations are better financial performers because by creating value for others, they create value for themselves and for their shareholders.

  1. Make small changes within yourselves

The most challenging global goal has to do with the over consumption by those that have more. Try reducing consumption of unnecessary things , eat and shop more responsibly and reuse as much as possible.

  1. Get the best possible skills

The biggest barrier to global progress lies in lack of access to skills.

If every organisation has an accountant to manage money, marketers to sell the product in the right way, engineers to improve the functioning of the product, videographers to help them document their work and data analytics person to help them measure their impact and improve.

If the right skill set is hired, a better organisation can be build.

  1. Give out money and donate

Set up monthly recurring donations to educational institutions, hospitals and charities which enable them to plan effectively for the needy kids and patients.


  1. Volunteer your free time

Volunteer in any capacity you can for any kind of local & international projects. Volunteer for the special skills you possess. This way you can grow your network strengthen your skill set and thus stay happier and healthier.

You are the difference! By following these goals, you are creating a better future. You are creating the world you want for yourself, your families and the next generations to come.

Be a part of the solution and not the problem!

Why entrepreneurship is the next big thing

“[In] the last century [the thinking was], if you wanna grow, you should find a good
opportunity. But today, if you want to be a great company, think about what social problem
you could solve.” – Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba
Today more and more people are choosing the path of entrepreneurship. Rather than the
road less traveled, entrepreneurship seems to be something that everyone wants to give it
a try!
Why is that so?
The most important thing in becoming an entrepreneur is that you must be ready to hear &
accept a new idea! Yes it does take time for people to accept the new ideas but you can
always give them some hints & clues that will help them to come around to your way of
thinking eventually.
Entrepreneurship brings a new solution to old human problems. An Entrepreneur is the
visionary and solution provider who not only has the power to solve the crisis but to create
an amazing business model.
As technology continues to enable innovation, and passionate people around the globe are
able to connect and create, lot of good things are in the realm of entrepreneurship. People
choose to become an entrepreneur to explore all of their interests & share their skills with
the world.
According to Bill Aulet, Managing Director of the Martin Trust Centre for MIT
Entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs must have the 4H Club characteristics : heart, head, hands
and home.
To be an entrepreneur you have to have heart. You have to understand what the process is
and you have to be willing to fight through the hard parts you inevitably will face.
You also have to have the head, the knowledge and framework for your idea. But having the
head and the heart is insufficient if you can’t put it into practice.
You need to use your hands and make it work.
Ultimately, it’s the last “H”,that is about building a community."
So there is a huge mass of crowd in the world with these characteristics who take up
becoming an entrepreneur. They are the folks who discover what’s missing in the market,
they take risks, they show drive & initiative and most of all they identify such group who can help them achieve such goals. Statistics reveal that there are more than 2 million start-ups
in our country.
Every person wants to be creative and want to come up with a better idea. Look at this at an
environmental perspective. Good ideas generally come by collaboration between smaller
hunches. It often happens that the thing that turns into a hunch in a real breakthrough in
one’s mind, is another hunch that’s lurking into somebody else’s mind. So, you have to find
a system that allows these hunches to collaborate and come up with something bigger.
That’s why we have this program Startup Weekend , where they created the space where
ideas could mingle , swap and create new business models. This place is full of energy &
possibilities. They promote & encourage entrepreneurship in real sense.
So Entrepreneurship is the next big thing because it brings in tremendous amount of
creativity, learning, freedom & accountability. They believe not in changing the lives of
people, but to change the world!!

Author- Nisha Kotecha

Startup Weekend Rajkot Youth edition 13-15th July 2018

Young OrganisingTeam


Startup Weekend is all about sparking your imagination. It is an action oriented program in your community that would power every step of the entrepreneurial journey. A diverse group of people passionate about making a positive impact in the entrepreneurial world get together.

Meet the organizers of the 2nd ever Startup Weekend Rajkot Youth Edition happening in India.

Palak Desai

Having done her schooling from SNK in Rajkot, Palak has a come a long way in building a strong portfolio at a very young age! She is a National level Squash player! Currently she is an Organizer of Second edition of Startup Weekend Youth.

She attended the first Startup Weekend at Gandhinagar. It was an eye opener for her in context of knowing the real business world and the startup ecosystem.

At Startup Weekend, she came in contact with Jatin Kataria, who mentored them at the event. Post the event, under his guidance she decided to get associated for organizing startup weekend youth edition. This youth edition was happening for the very first time in India. It was a very proud moment to be a part of an organizing team of this unique youth edition.

As her 12th grade had begun, there was a lot of pressure handling things and managing time. Yet she decided to do her internship with WE Group. Her passion sparked! She wanted to do something and achieve lot of things in life. She believed in herself, learnt lot of things, took up the challenges, dug deeper into her love area and kept going!

Her passion and hard work took her to become TGES TEDEd Club Leader and a speaker as well in the same year. In spite of many roadblocks, her determination helped her resolve things!

Though having her 12th Boards, she took up to organize various events in this region at a very young age. Palak’s attention to detail, creative imagination, curiosity, determination and contagious enthusiasm have earned her a reputation for unparalleled excellence as a youth. She executes each task flawlessly while maintaining a pleasant, calm and helpful demeanor to ensure an amazing experience for the community.

Palak believes in giving back to the community through volunteering and creating standards of excellence, thus raising the bar of professionalism. It is also proud to know that she is the Co-Founder at Alumni Achievers, which is in planning stage.

Dhrumil Dhanesha

Dhrumil Dhanesha, a student and Founder of Dhrumil Dhanesha Technologies, cracked the code to success at the age of 13 years.  His expertise, connections and vision to lead his goals helps him exceed his expectations.

He was born in Gujarat, after which he shifted to Mozambique with family. Right from the age of 5 years, he only had gadgets to play with! He felt that the gadgets were solely made for him.

Becoming extremely user friendly with technology, he went on to explore more about gadgets then from the age of 6.He developed an interest to develop a game  and from the age of 9, he mastered that art of developing games and applications At the age of 12, he went on to explore making webistes.

His Mentor, Mr Jatin Kataria, suggested him to register his company and now he has his own venture in the name of Dhrumil Dhanesha Technologies. This company provides IT support like app and web development and chatbot development. This is surely an achievement that made him beam with pride.He set his goals which was the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.

Talking about his startup journey, before participating at Startup Weekend Rajkot Youth Kids edition in 2017, he was unaware about the entrepreneurship world. After attending it, he got to know what entrepreneurship actually is in real world, what marketing strategies, business ,models, finance models are etc. This event helped him boost his venture and fortunately his team was the second runner up at Startup Weekend youth kids edition at Rajkot. The best part was that he got to work with his age of people.

It was truly an awesome experience because he came with an empty mind and gained a lot more than he anticipated!!

Harishree Khunt

Everyone’s path to success is different. Born and brought up in Rajkot, there was a time where Harishree was unable to stand and address my classroom. Considering the fact that you grow with time,5 years from then, today she is able to address the crowd, irrespective of the number of people present.

They say that you measure the size of the accomplishment by the obstacles you need to overcome. Having a fear of public appearance and stage fear initially, she overcame her fears with determination and courage. She has overcome the ability to handle a sudden change without making it a distraction.She has rushed the fear of what people think and then participate in Startup Weekend Youth edition ,Rajkot in 2017.She was amazed to meet the people of her age. She feels that the age bound created by society are outdated !!

Harishree groomed herself by reading several books and by keeping herself in the place of narrator, she understood the different dynamics of the world! She realized that when you read, the challenges the narrator faces, somehow becomes the challenges that you want to solve. And hence, you resort to deal with different situations. Known as “the percolator,” she listens and digests information. Then her creative ideas are always brewing, giving new energy to every step she takes or plans.

Talking about the startup weekend journey in Rajkot, when she entered she did not have any idea about anything. It’s only after getting the schedule in hand, did she get to know. She was really excited though, she was in a dilemma as well as to which team to choose and be in. With lot of amazing creative ideas flowing around, she had to think through. Once the mentors started coming in, she felt it was not as difficult as it sounded. It was a life changing experience. Everyone had their own perspectives of seeing the problem.

So in all, Harishree feels that you should participate to explore the community as well as the experts in different fields. Interact with them as much as possible and this will definitely help you grow personally.

Harshil Zalavadiya

Born and brought up in Rajkot, Harshil started his journey at the age of 9 years old.

One day he was trying to download a song from the internet and was not aware of the process .He tried to explore the whole day and waited the whole night there was 2G internet service available in those days.

This experience brought him closer towards technology. Through a similar process then, he downloaded few more songs and made an amazing collection. He made up his mind to attend a workshop thereafter. He had a good experience learning about technology. His teacher then suggested to search for more advanced courses. Since then he started learning web and app development.he also learnt ethical hacking, google cloud and much more interesting stuffs relating to technology.

His source of inspiration was Parth Devariya. Harshil got to know about the startup world from him and that’s how he started his own venture at the age of 11 in the name of “Dynamic Solutions” which was a serviced based company providing web support to 3rd party vendors.

Due to mismanagement of studies, he had to close that startup and explore more of entrepreneurial skills. Finally at the age of 14 years, he founded a company called Harshil IT’s solutions which was a completely product based company having multiple verticals.

When he was 15, he founded a company called Space Frontier which aims to focus on developing mobile satellites. So facing lot of challenges, he strived through the up’s and downs and created the ability to think outside the box to solve a problem.

According to Harshil, he would highly recommend students to participate in Startup Weekend Youth edition as it is an energy booster with lot of brainstorming for 3 days! With the expert knowledge, precise communications, and problem solving techniques, an extensive network of community can be established through the Startup Weekend team.

Krishna Babani

Committed to producing high quality design work in a timely manner. His creativity, flexibility to help clients helps him excel in his work.he is adept at responding quickly to change.

Krishna Babani is a Founder and CEO of inSpace. Born on 25th of July, 2003, he is a  geek and designer. He got a diploma in graphic designing at the age of 13 at Little Panther. He was inspired from Steve Jobs at 2011 after he left the world. He got more inspiration from his Book – Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. His goal or his life follows the path at the Apple Campus and the wish is to become Apple CEO. Krishna’s dreams and aspires to become an apple employee one day.

 From there he got an inspiration to start his company inSpace. inSpace is an app development, web development and graphic designing company. Handled by two geeks -Krishna and Dhrumil Dhanesha (His Business Partner). They earn but earning doesn’t  matter to them a lot, as they mainly focus on experience and producing the best quality is what they strive for. And that’s how inSpace was been found on 1 April 2017. Their main message is Work Hard, and Talk Less. No doubt they also have fun but not at the time of work.

 Experience at Startup Weekend Rajkot Youth Edition –

He really enjoyed the journey that took him to this age. Initially he was pretty shy that he wasn’t even interacting with anyone, not even his relatives .But first time he experienced how to work in a team and what product do they bring in market to do their startup. Those 3 days changed his life when he met mentors, facilitators which helped to get opportunities in future. These 54 Hours were not only the event to launch a startup but it gave him lots of learning with small small bricks and finally a building. He faced ups and downs when he was forming a team. Mainly his goal was to figure out how he can reach people and can get benefits and also can give benefits or some major plus points.

We learnt how to complete the work which was been allotted. We also worked like the real startup world the way seniors and their parents do.

He feels attending Startup Weekend is a must as it will bring your talent out of your creative mind. Second you would know how a team is formed. Third is the work given to you will let you know that you are capable for it or not. Fourth is how to interact with everyone and build new contacts. Last but not the least, you will have fun, learn and if Foodie (Delicious Food)

These young organizing team set a benchmark by meeting the expectations of the participants and the program as a whole successfully. The remarkable result was the commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort  individually and as a team.

What and How of Startup Weekend


It was in the summer of 2007, in Boulder, Colorado that some 70 young enthusiasts, creators and future leaders sat together driven by a common passion to create something, a startup specifically, in just 54 hours. Led by Andrew Hyde, began the journey of what would become over the course of a decade, the leading organization that both leads and is led by the creators of the world.

With their motto: “Build Community. Start Companies. No Talk. All Action”; Startup Weekend has grown into a global organization with presence in over 150 countries, and has a flourishing base of above 210,000 entrepreneurs

Startup weekend, a part of Techstars family of programs powered by Google for Entrepreneurs, essentially constitutes what is called a start-up community. It is a 54 hour weekend event during which people from a rich profusion of varying backgrounds come together to pitch ideas for new start-up companies and work to develop a prototype, demo, or presentation by Sunday evening, principally in teams that are formed on the very first day of the event.

In addition to attendees, referred to as “Weekend Warriors”, attracts coaches, speakers, panellists as well as various sponsors and company representatives.  With presence of notable names in the local tech industry and well respected members of the local start up community, you get the privilege and opportunity to connect with people driven to build something new.


After a weekend of brainstorming and launching projects, a good share of teams keep the momentum going and work together, beyond the Startup Weekend itself, to build a fully operating start-up. Over 36% of all Startup Weekend teams still go strong after three months.  Others take with them the boot camp experience which teaches you more than what any other resource could offer. Roughly 80% of participants plan on continuing working with their teams or startups after the weekend. “Rich and diverse talent is a Startup Weekend staple”, and you get to walk away with the wealth of a newly acquired membership of a like-minded yet diverse network- like minded owing to the common passion to create, and diverse owing to the varying fields that their skills and talents environ.

Since the program having been found, 3500+ such events have been held in 150+ countries over the globe. Once you have joined a Startup Weekend, you’ll become part of a global community with over 200,000 alumni.