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Research and Development

June, 2012


India has become a key contributor in global research and of growth in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, playing host to one-third of top 1,000 research and development (R&D) spenders in the world, according to a Zinnov study titled 'Global R&D Benchmarking Study'. The study also highlighted that the opportunity areas for India to attract R&D investment span over 13 sectors, with software being the most invested in sector.

India is making its way as a major center for cutting-edge R&D centre. Realising that innovation is the engine for national and global growth, employment, competitiveness and sharing of opportunities in the 21st century, the Government of India has declared 2010-2020 as the 'Decade of Innovation'.

Indian R&D Sector and Global Impact

The R&D talent pool is growing at the rate of 9 per cent every year and is expected to reach 250,000 by 2015, as per C S Chandramouli, Senior Director-Globalisation Advisory, Zinnov. Indian multinational companies (MNC) are moving into tier II cities, highlighted the Zinnov study. In addition, fresh talent pool in tier II cities is estimated to form 35 per cent of the Indian R&D workforce going ahead. Further, the study highlighted that the MNC R&D talent pool in India for 2011 was 204,196. "India definitely has the right potential to become a key R&D hub, not only in software for which it has gained recognition globally, but also in other verticals such as aerospace, automotive and defense", added Sidhant Rastogi, Director - Globalisation Advisory, Zinnov.

India has also inked pacts with six countries, including the US and Australia, for collaborative research in the field of science and technology. "We have about 83 agreements on research collaboration with various countries. We have committed US$ 180 million on a five-year budget with six countries," according to T Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology (DST).

In addition, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), the German Research Foundation, has expanded its India presence with the formal launch of a Centre in Hyderabad. It is collaborating with the DST on about 40 bilateral research projects in science and engineering currently, said Dr Torsten Fischer, Director, DFG India. DFG is funding projects to the tune of US$ 8 million - US$ 9 million in India.

India and the US have signed an agreement on collaboration in diabetes research. This is the eighth agreement between the two countries in the field of health and medicine.

  • India's first indigenous all-weather Radar Imaging Satellite (Risat-1) was launched successfully on board the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV)-C19 from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, on April 26, 2012
  • Vyom, the first sounding rocket designed and realised by students of Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST), Thiruvananthapuram, was launched successfully from the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station at Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre
  • Students of the IIT-Bombay racing team unveiled their first electric racing car, EVo1. More than 60 students from multi-disciplines-mechanical, electrical and energy science-have come together to design this car, which was revealed in presence of the sponsors and Rangan Banerjee, Dean of Research and Development, IIT-Bombay
  • The Institute of Management Technology (IMT), Ghaziabad, has entered into partnerships with three European business schools. The institutes - namely Copenhagen Business School (CBS), Denmark, Grenoble Ecole de Management, France and International Business School of Service Management, Germany (ISS) - will collaborate with IMT in terms of faculty exchange as well as R&D
  • Google has announced the launch of Google Drive. The launch is special for India, as Google's engineering teams in Bengaluru and Hyderabad conceptualised and built the centralised management tools, security features, ability to search within a document and billing systems for Google Drive
  • The Canadian phonemaker, Research In Motion (RIM) and Kerala-based business incubator Startup Village Pvt Ltd have announced plans to launch the first BlackBerry Innovation Zone in India. The Innovation Zone, located at Rubus Labs within the Startup Village, will be the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific region, as per a company statement
  • French auto components maker, Faurecia has set up a new and expanded R&D facility with an investment of Rs 110 crore (US$ 19.64 million) at Pune, to grow its Asia business