The second reason this con­fer­ence is impor­tant is that it attracts entre­pre­neurs inter­ested in the issues of the region. The Devel­op­ment Dia­logue is part of a larger project by the Desh­pande Foun­da­tion called the Sandbox, which brings together entre­pre­neurs, phil­an­thropists, investors and others from around the world. Well known Indian Amer­ican entre­pre­neurs like Hemang Dave, Palaniswamy Rajan and Hemant Kanakia have all attended, as have leading Amer­ican uni­ver­si­ties like North­eastern Uni­ver­sity,UC Berkeley and the Uni­ver­sity of Southern Cal­i­fornia. But the bulk of the entre­pre­neurs are from Hubli – they are col­lege stu­dents trying out ideas, farmers looking to grow their family farms, and com­mitted entre­pre­neurs par­tic­i­pating in a variety of accel­er­ator pro­grams launched by the Foun­da­tion. The Dia­logue brings them all together annu­ally. Over 10,000 local res­i­dents and col­leges stu­dents now annu­ally take up an entre­pre­neur­ship project through these initiatives.

 

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