India is amongst the top-ranking countries in the field of basic research. Indian Science is one of the most powerful segments for growth and development, especially in the emerging scenario and competitive economy. With an annual growth of over 9.7 per cent in the number of scientific publications in Science Citation Indexed journals during 2011-12, India has registered the second highest growth rate in the world. Scientific knowledge and expertise, innovation, high technology, industrial infrastructure and skilled workforce are the key factors that have driven the progress of the country to a major extent.
The Indian science and technology space has been instrumental to bring social and economic changes. The country has not only endeavoured to upgrade traditional skills to make them relevant and competitive, but has also been on a spur to develop advanced technologies, which has eventually played a pivotal role in transforming the nation into a modern, industrialised society.
The Department of Science & Technology plays a vital role in promotion of science & technology in the country. The department has wide ranging activities ranging from promoting high end basic research and development (R&D) of cutting edge technologies on one hand to service the technological requirements of the common man through development of appropriate skills and technologies on the other.
The year 2011-12 is a land mark year for the Department of Science & Technology. It earmarked the completion of 40 years of service by the Department to the Science & Technology sector since its establishment.
Thomson Reuters, one of the global agencies involved in gathering "Evidence" have been commissioned to undertake an India specific study. The "evidence" report has presented a large volume of data and trends in research outputs from India.
The analysis of the report indicated a growth rate of about 66 per cent between 2006-10 as compared to 2001-05. This amounts to average growth rate of about 13 per cent per year. The study also reveals that Chemistry, Physics, Materials Science, Engineering and Clinical medicine are the active areas of research outputs from India during the study period.
According to E&Y's recent report 'Beyond borders: Global biotechnology report - 2011', India's domestic biotech industry has crossed US$ 4 billion mark in fiscal 2011. The report highlighted vaccines, diagnostics & devices and personalised medicine as the major innovative growth areas for the domestic biotech sector.
"We need a new wave of investment from the private sector so that young people will be encouraged to seek a career in science," according to Dr Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India.
Some of the major investment in Indian science and technology sector are as follows: