IPOH: Children are often brimming with ideas and they should not be brushed aside, said renowned grassroots innovations scholar Prof Anil K. Gupta.
They should be treated as a source of ideas as there is much to learn from them, he said.
“Children are naturally creative, we just need to pay attention to them.
“Everyone is a potential innovator and inventor,” he said in his keynote address during Pangkor Dialogue 2017 yesterday.
Prof Anil said he had come across many good ideas and innovations that were thought up by children.
Among the ideas were a walking aid suitable for stairs, shoes with vacuuming abilities and a modern Swiss Army Knife with a projector function.
The professor also called on countries to collaborate in creating a networking system to pool ideas and innovations.
“We need an open source knowledge management system. We should no longer just think of ourselves but also others,” he said.
Countries, he added, also need to learn and work together or risk being left behind.
Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett said he managed to turn his town, which was once listed as the second most obese city in the US, into one of the fittest.
Cornett said Oklahoma was built around cars and there were no pedestrian-friendly walkways.
The city, he added, was also known as the fast-food capital of the world.
“In 2007, I called upon the people in the city to go on a diet. We also created jogging and biking trails.
“In 2012, we were on the list as one of the fittest cities in US,” he said in his keynote address.
Cornett said no one talked about obesity but he had to start getting people to do so, in order to bring about changes.
“The media was also supportive of this.
“To encourage a naturally active lifestyle, it would take at least 20 years.
“I think we are going in the right direction,” he said.
The general health of the people there has also improved.
Cornett said the mortality rate in the city dropped by 4.1%, while heart disease and cancer-related mortality rates dropped by 3.5% and 7.2% respectively.