Rajesh Nair

Rajesh Nair

Professor of Practice, Innovation & Entrepreneurship. Visiting Scholar at MIT

Area of Expertise:

Electrical Engineering, Product Design, Design Thinking, Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Rajesh is a product designer and entrepreneur with more than 25 years’ experience in the design of more than a hundred products and multiple startups in the Boston area.

His research is in catalyzing innovators and entrepreneurs in communities from the ground up and to build local entrepreneurship ecosystems. He has conducted workshops on Making, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship in different countries for students and professionals. His current work is in creating Innovation Ecosystems in Underserved Schools through the program that he developed called Zero2Maker (www.Zero2Maker.org) that has created maker labs and ecosystems in seventeen schools in Malaysia and India.

He is a practitioner of the Design Thinking process. He founded three product manufacturing companies in the US and a nonprofit organization that promotes innovators & entrepreneurs among Indian youth.

He holds 13 US patents. He received MS degrees in Engineering & Management (MIT), Manufacturing Engineering (UMass, Amherst), and Electronic Product Design (IISc, Bangalore), and BS degrees in Physics (Kerala) and Electronics & Communications Engineering (Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore).

He received the Entrepreneur of the Year award from New Hampshire High Tech Council and was the finalist at E&Y EoY-New England program.

He has given talks on Catalyzing Entrepreneurs in Under-Served Communities at MIT System Thinking Conference, TEDx UTP, TEDx Beacon Street, and UN General Assembly.

He has conducted over 80 workshops on Ideation, Design Thinking, Making skills, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship around the world.

Some of the programs conducted:

Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Development: Can we expose youth and school students to creativity, science, arts, technology, and making experience to change their academic performance, innovation skills, social engagement, and entrepreneurship attitudes? Does creating nurturing ecosystems in schools and colleges attract more students to be innovators and entrepreneurs? This program was conducted in 17 rural government schools in India and Malaysia as a research project to study its impact on students and the schools, and possibly scale it to other regions. Watch the videos from the program conducted at Kedah, Malaysia and Mysore, India, and at MBCET, an engineering college at Trivandrum, India

MakerFest (Youth) & TinkerFest (School students), 48-hour workshops on Ideation, Creativity, Technology, & Making skills to build their interest in STEM. Over 40 such workshops were conducted in Malaysia, India, Vietnam, Timor Leste, and the USA for school and college students: Videos from some of the MakerFest and TinkerFest events:  ASB-MBA-18, ASB-MBA-19, ASB-MBA-20, Ho Chi Minh City, Bank Negara

Corporate Innovation Workshops: Bringing the culture of innovation into an organization is critical for any organization today. It starts with creating innovators who can think differently and start to make changes within the organization to . This program called Innovation InterventionAirAsia. UOB

Zero2Entrepreneurship Bootcamps: This multi-week-long bootcamp takes students through the Maker-Innovator-Entrepreneur cycle to build their skills in creativity, design, technology, and fabrication, and nurturing their entrepreneurship mindset.  MIT-Make In India Bootcamp, Kerala,

Student Project: Kadha Soap, from women in a rural Indian village, TorchIt, empowering visually challenged community

  • R Nair, E Corpus (2020) Incubating Future Innovators and Entrepreneurs, BAckground paper for Asian Development Outlook 2020: What Drives Innovation in Asia, Asian Development Bank, Manila

  • R Nair (2020), Creating Jobs in the Post-Covid World (Article)

  • R Nair, W Smit, and E Corpus (2018). The Impact and Ripple Effect of Maker Training: A Longitudinal Study Among Young Latent Entrepreneurs in Rural India. AIEA-NBER Conference, Kuala Lumpur, 2018
  • R. Nair, J. E. Corpus, M. Frese, and W. Smit (2019). Maker Education as an Early Intervention to Catalyze the Development of Pre-entrepreneurs in Underserved Communities, International Symposium of Academic Makerspaces, Yale Univ, 2019.

  • R Nair, W Smit, J Corpus (2019). The Ripple Effect of Maker-Training Impact: A Longitudinal Study among Young Latent Entrepreneurs in Rural India, Fab 15 Conference, Egypt

  • D Saidava, T Betai, R Nair (2019). Scalable makerspaces in the rural community for creating a sustainable ecosystem in developing countries, International Symposium of Academic Makerspaces, Yale Univ, 2019.
  • Rajesh Nair, US5568128A : Self learning diaper wetness detector and toilet trainer
  • Adam J. Cohen, Roger L. Holman, Rajesh M. Nair: US5672948A: Digital, Back EMF, single coil sampling, sensorless commutator system for a D.C. motor, Sep 30, 1997
  • David M. Ellis, Rajesh M. Nair: US7201049B2, Pulsed thermistor sensor, Apr 10, 2007
  • Rajesh Nair, Roger Holman, David Gagnon, Owen R. Mann: US6763711B1: Air flow sensor using measurement of rate of heat loss, Jul 20, 2004
  • Rajesh Nair: US7726186B2: Airflow sensor for filter blockage detection, Jun 1, 2010
  • Rajesh Nair: US6881142B1: Intelligent networked fan assisted tiles for adaptive thermal management of thermally sensitive rooms, Apr 19, 2005
  • Rajesh Nair, Roger Holman, David Gagnon: US6319114B1: Thermal management system, Nov 20, 2001
  • Izuh Obinelo, Rajesh M. Nair: US7435051B2: Multi-stage blower, Oct 14, 2008
  • Rajesh Nair: US6318965B1: Intelligent internal fan controller, Nov 20, 2001
  • Rajesh Nair, Izundu F. Obinelo: US6942025B2: Uniform heat dissipating and cooling heat sink
  • Rajesh Nair: US20090277622A1: Air flow controller for electrical equipment holder, Nov 12, 2009
  • Rajesh Nair: US20120073783: Heat exchanger for data center, Mar 29, 2012
  • Rajesh M. Nair, Vivek Mansingh, Raouf A. Ismail: US5511415A Gas flow and temperature probe and gas flow and temperature monitor system including one or more such probes, Apr 30, 1996