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January 16, 2024

Anuraag Vazirani (2011-16) published in major Nature journal

It has been an exciting start to the year for Anuraag Vazirani (2011-16), who was recently published in a major Nature group journal for his research paper on the topic of healthcare innovation and entrepreneurship, specifically a technique called ‘BrainSwarming’.

The study, which can be read in Scientific Reports here, aims to give entrepreneurs, innovators, and researchers a toolkit to create innovative solutions to problems they are trying to solve.

It was conducted by adapting the technique of ‘BrainSwarming’ to enable problem-solvers to overcome psychological obstacles to thinking up new solutions to a problem, and so to effectively generate innovative solutions – an alternative to traditional ‘brainstorming’.

Anuraag and his co-authors went about the study by developing Dr Tony McCaffrey’s Innovation-Enhancing Techniques, which involve solving practical problems using tangible objects, typically in engineering or design contexts, and are explained in more detail in this video.

“Our paper demonstrates how these techniques can be adapted to generate solutions for a problem involving an abstract goal, making use of intangible resources,” Anuraag said.

“Adapting the techniques allowed us to generate, as a case study, 100 innovative ideas for blockchain (an intangible resource) to facilitate ethical goals in biomedicine (an abstract goal).

“This technique could be useful to any entrepreneurs or innovators, in helping them to identify potentially novel and innovative solutions to a problem of their choice.”

Anuraag, who studies Medicine at Oxford, will graduate this year after taking some time out of his degree to pursue his research into digital technologies in healthcare.

He said he was inspired to get into the healthcare innovation industry having grown up in a time “when the internet of things was coming into its prime”.

“Despite this, I observed how healthcare has historically lagged behind other fields in terms of both innovation and introducing digital technology, and sought to explore how I could contribute towards plugging that gap,” he said.

“Researching how blockchain could be used to manage electronic healthcare records as an undergraduate catapulted me into the field of healthcare innovation, from where I have not looked back!

“I plan to continue investigating novel and innovative applications of technology in healthcare and science, alongside ongoing clinical work.”

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