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Last Updated: June 24, 2016
President, Carnegie Mellon University
Latest update: February, 2016
•In recent years, the Indian Government has implemented several fellowship schemes to nurture human capacity for advanced research in the country
•Following the Government’s initiatives, the number of researchers per million people has gone up from 140 during 2004–06 to 160 in 2010
•The period between 2010-20E has been declared as the “Decade of Innovation” by the nation
Last Updated: February, 2016
SECTORAL REPORT | January, 2016
Modern India has had a strong focus on science and technology, realising that it is a key element of economic growth. India is among the topmost countries in the world in the field of scientific research, positioned as one of the top five nations in the field of space exploration. The country has regularly undertaken space missions, including missions to the moon and the famed Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). On 16 October 2014, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)’s PSLV-C26 successfully launched IRNSS-1C, the third satellite in the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. This is PSLV’s 27th consecutive successful mission.
Currently@, 27 satellites including 11 that facilitate the communication network to the country are operational, establishing India’s progress in the space technology domain. India is likely to take a leading role in launching satellites for the SAARC nations, generating revenue by offering its space facilities for use to other countries.
There has been considerable emphasis on encouraging scientific temperament among India’s youth through numerous technical universities and institutes, both in the private and government sectors. At present, the country has a total of 17 Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), 31 National Institutes of Technology (NITs), 677# universities awarding about 29,000 doctorate degrees, and about 40 research laboratories run by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
India is among the world’s top 10 nations in the number of scientific publications. Position-wise, it is ranked 17th in the number of citations received and 34th in the number of citations per paper across the field of science and technology (among nations publishing 50,000 or more papers). The country is ranked ninth globally in the number of scientific publications and 12th in the number of patents filed.
With support from the government, considerable investment and development has incurred in different sectors such as agriculture, healthcare, space research, and nuclear power through scientific research. For instance, India is gradually becoming self-reliant in nuclear technology. Recently, the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project Unit-1 (KKNPP 1) with 1,000 MW capacity was commissioned, while the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project Unit-2 (KKNPP-2) with 1,000 MW capacity is under commissioning.
Some of the recent developments in the field of science and technology in India are as follows
The Government aims to invest 2 per cent of the country’s GDP on research and development (R&D) in its 12th Five-Year Plan period (2013–17). Accordingly, the Government has undertaken various measures for promoting growth of scientific research, such as:
The central government plans to soon institute a nation-wide consultation process with a view to develop the first publicly accessible Science and Technology policy. The policy ‘Vision S&T 2020’ would articulate the country’s future towards self-reliance and technological independence in the 21st century.
The Department of Information and Technology plans to create a separate online portal for inviting ideas from technology innovators, with the objective to provide them with assistance including finance (bankrolling), and thus help to boost initiatives like Startup India and Digital India.
Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Commerce and Industry, has launched the Technology Acquisition and Development Fund (TADF) under the National Manufacturing Policy (NMP) to facilitate acquisition of Clean, Green and Energy Efficient Technologies, by Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).
National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), an autonomous organisation under the Union Ministry of Culture, is engaged in the establishment of Science Centres across the country. NCSM is developing a Science City at Guwahati, Assam, which would be handed over to the Government of Assam for future operations and maintenance. The organisation has received proposals from various state governments for setting up of such Science Cities. NCSM has undertaken the Science Centres/Cities projects in a phased manner depending on the availability of resources, project handling capacity of NCSM, and existing level of science centre activities in a particular state.
In the Union Budget 2015–16, the following initiatives have been taken in the field of science and technology:
India is aggressively working towards establishing itself as a leader in industrialisation and technological development. Significant developments in the nuclear energy sector are likely as India looks to expand its nuclear capacity. Moreover, nanotechnology is expected to transform the Indian pharmaceutical industry. The agriculture sector is also likely to undergo a major revamp, with the government investing heavily for the technology-driven Green Revolution. The Government of India, through the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Policy-2013, among other things, aspires to position India among the world’s top five scientific powers.
Exchange rate used INR 1 = 0.015 as on December 17, 2015
References – Media reports, Press Releases, Press Information Bureau (PIB)
Notes - @ - As per information provided in Lok Sabha, # - In 2014, as per Ministry of Human Resources and Development, * - as per The Times Higher Education of London.
Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and IBEF is not responsible for any errors in the same.
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