Sonam Wangchuk – inventor, engineer, innovator, and an educational reformist – hails from the mountainous region of Leh. The Co-Founder of SECMOL in Ladakh, who recently won the prestigious Rolex Award for his creation ‘The Ice Stupas’, Sonam has only one valuable and solid piece of advice for the young innovators of India and the world today, “Keep it simple.”
The passion to innovate came at an early age to him, when Sonam discovered his love for puzzles. While puzzles have answers that already exist, in real life, actual problems represent life-puzzles that don’t have apparent answers. They need to be worked upon.
Puzzles, when put together, hold inside the complete picture after the pieces come together. Every problem gives birth to multiple possibilities for innovative solutions, which are still hidden and waiting to be found.
Finding solutions needs love and passion. Put the pieces together and tackle the problem, whether small or big, related to your home or society, your world or the Earth at large, to find the solution. There is a unique ‘joy’ which then translates to ‘relief’ for the community when the right solution works for a problem that was waiting to be addressed.
Right from the Ice Stupas invented in Ladakh, to conserving water during the winters while simultaneously giving the barren lands green cover in the summers for agriculture, solutions are created to solve challenges in the easiest possible way, while being mindful of everything connected to it.
Every solution needs to be simple…simpler than the problem, so as to not give rise to another problem, that becomes yet another hindrance for the people around. That is where the beauty of a good solution lies.
“When people come and see any of my inventions, and say, ‘But, what’s so special in it?’, that’s when I say ‘Thank you!’ That’s when I know I have succeeded,” shares Sonam in this short video.
The final goal? Let the simple, almost-childlike, solutions that actually work solve the problems of a very complex world.
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