CAA’s Articulate – Atal Innovation Mission launches ‘AIM-iCREST’


  • NITI Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) has launched AIM iCREST – an Incubator Capabilities enhancement program for a Robust Ecosystem focused on creating high performing Startups.


  • The initiative has been designed to enable the incubation ecosystem and act as a growth hack for AIM’s Atal and Established incubators across the country.  
  • Under the initiative, the AIM’s incubators are set to be upscaled and provided requisite support to foster the incubation enterprise economy, that will help them to significantly enhance their performance.
  • This will be complemented by providing training to entrepreneurs, through technology driven processes and platforms.
  • The program aims at going beyond incubator capacity building.  
  • AIM has joined hands with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wadhwani Foundation – organizations that can lend credible support and global expertise in the entrepreneurship and innovation space.
  • Significance:
    • Given the current pandemic crisis, the effort will focus on supporting start-up entrepreneurs in knowledge creation and dissemination as well as in developing robust and active networks.

Atal Innovation Mission

The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) is a flagship initiative set up by the NITI Aayog:

  • To promote innovation and entrepreneurship across the length and breadth of the country, based on a detailed study and deliberations on innovation and entrepreneurial needs of India in the years ahead.
  • AIM is also envisaged as an umbrella innovation organization that would play an instrumental role
    • In alignment of innovation policies between central, state and sectoral innovation schemes
    • Incentivizing the establishment and promotion of an ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship at various levels – higher secondary schools, science, engineering and higher academic institutions, and SME/MSME industry, corporate and NGO levels.

AIM has adopted a holistic framework in the achievement of its objectives.

  1. Atal Tinkering Labs – to promote creative, innovative mindset in schools.
  2. Atal Incubators – to promote entrepreneurship in universities and industry.
  3. Atal New India Challenges and Atal Grand Challenges – to promote specific product innovations with social / economic impact.
  4. Mentors of Change – to mentor students at ATL and AIC Incubators / Startups.