Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Frugal Innovation by the Small and the Marginal: An Alternative Discourse on Innovation and Development | by Dr Saradindu Bhaduri, CSSP
Monday, May 23, 2016
[Apologies for cross postings]
Day 2: November 20, 2016
Technology, Innovation and Governance for attainment of the SDGs
Call for Papers
In a general sense, technology refers to a practical application of science to address a particular product or manufacturing need in the form of a specific process that produces a product or service. Innovation refers to novelty in terms of quality, product, design, process or organizational routine.
Exploiting technology and promoting innovation for economic growth as well as socioeconomic development is a challenge for all developing countries. Here governance is key. The national system of innovation of any country comprises a complex mesh of actors such as the State, firms, public laboratories, institutions, NGOs, civil society and consumers and even nature. Governance involves setting the rules of the game, with monitoring and incentives – so that collective welfare may be maximized. As with Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) call for astute exploitation of existing technologies, promotions of useful innovations and efficient governance designs for attainment.
Thus, we call for papers addressing any issues related to the following that touch upon attainment of one or more SDGs:
- Technology usage or redesign
- Innovation creation, adoption, diffusion
- Governance of delivery platforms, multi-stakeholder consortiums, public private partnerships, sanitation drives, government programmes
Papers must validate their arguments through evidence. Qualitative, quantitative or theoretical methodology can be deployed but final arguments must be validated by evidence. Please send your papers to Rushva Parihar email@example.com. Attendance is free but registration is required. To register – click on this link – fill the form and submit: http://goo.gl/forms/7G2agTsJOX
- Deadline for submission: September 30.
- Email confirmation of result: October 15.
- Title Page should include full contact details. Selected Papers will be published as part of the UNU-MERIT working paper series and/or as a Special Issue of an international journal.
Organization Committee: Prof. Shyama V. Ramani and Rushva Parihar, UNU-MERIT (Netherlands).
Friday, May 20, 2016
UNESCO Communication and Information Weekly Newsletter
On the invitation of the Hue Monuments Conservation Centre (HMCC), in coordination with the Vietnam National Commission for UNESCO and MOWCAP's Secretariat, the 7th General Meeting of the Memory of the World Committee for Asia and the Pacific (MOWCAP) took place from 18 to 20 May 2016, in Hue City, Vietnam.
IPDC delegation visits Turkey
Ms Albana Shala, Chair of IPDC, and Mr Blicher Bjerregard, IPDC Bureau member, Representative of Denmark and President of the European Federation of Journalists, visited Ankara from 9 to 11 May 2016. The mission was organized by the Permanent Delegation of the Repubic of Turkey to UNESCO and the Anadolu News Agency Journalism Academy (AA).
In a move to highlight the crucial role of national governments in pursuing gender equality in the media staffing and content, UNESCO is consulting with its 195 Member and 9 Associate Member States to showcase relevant actions taken by them towards realizing this goal.
A three-day UNESCO Memory of the World training workshop for Central America opened on Wednesday, 11 May 2016 in Antigua Guatemala (Guatemala). The workshop is organized by the National Commission of Guatemala for UNESCO in cooperation with UNESCO Guatemala office.
IPDC Chair Albana Shala took part in a two-day research conference on the safety of journalists during the celebrations of World Press Freedom Day in Helsinki, Finland on 3 and 4 May. The conference aimed at strengthening cooperation with academia in line with the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity.
The Republic of Seychelles commemorated the ITU World Telecommunication and Information Society Day today, the 17th of May 2016.
UNESCO launched last week its report on media development in Curaçao to an audience of more than 60 stakeholders at an event organized in Curaçao's capital Willemstad. The report was officially presented to Ms Irene Dick, Minister of Education, Science, Culture & Sport.
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
UNESCO Media Advisory N°2016-17
Science, cornerstone of sustainable development
Scientific Advisory Board of the UN Secretary-General meets in Trieste
Paris, 18 May- The 25 leading scientists of the Scientific Advisory Board of the UN Secretary General will meet in Trieste, Italy, on 24 and 25 May to provide insights and recommendations on the crucial role of science in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were adopted by the United Nations in the late 2015.
The Board will also focus on the following topics: climate change and climate induced risks, local and indigenous knowledge systems as enablers of sustainable development as well as food security and health. The meeting will provide an opportunity to initiate a process of reflection on science consultation mechanisms for the United Nations system.
The members of the Board will participate in an open high-level Session on Strengthening scientific human capacity in developing countries, together with high level representatives of the Italian Government, UNESCO and top international science organizations based in Italy. This session will be livestreamed.
The Scientific Advisory Board of the UN Secretary General seeks to inform the United Nations' work by providing advice on science, technology and innovation for sustainable development. The Board brings together 26 eminent scientists from all regions of the world and aims to provide a complete picture of scientific needs to face global challenges. It will present its conclusions by the end of the year. UNESCO hosts the Secretariat of the Board.
This 5th meeting is hosted by the Government of Italy, the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), the World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of sciences in the developing world (TWAS), the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) and the International Centre for Genetic, Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB).
The preliminary conclusions of the meeting will be shared at a press conference on 25 May 2016 at 9.45 a.m. in the Leonardo building of ICTP*. It will bring together Board members and the co-chairs of the meeting: Flavia Schlegel, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for the Natural Sciences, and Fabiola Gianotti, Director-General of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).
Media who are unable to join in person can access the press conference via online streaming; they will be able to ask questions remotely.
- Press kit (pdf)
- Live streaming of the press conference and Open high-level session
25 may 2016, 9:45 to 10:30 and 11:30 to 13:00
- Practical information : how to reach ICTP
- Members of the UN Secretary General's Scientific Advisory Board
- Website of the Scientific Advisory Board
Media contact: Isabelle Brugnon, +33 (0) 664 148 494, firstname.lastname@example.org
* Strada Costiera, 11. Trieste, Italy
UNESCO, 7, place de Fontenoy, PARIS, NA FRANCE France
Tuesday, May 17, 2016
UNESCO Launches GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy on Africa and Israel [open access]
UNESCO Launches GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy on Africa and Israel
- Mapping Research and Innovation in the State of Israel | GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy # 5, UNESCO, Paris, 2016. Open Access Download.
- Mapping Research and Innovation in the Republic of Rwanda | GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy # 4, UNESCO, Paris, 2015. Open Access Download.
- Mapping Research and Innovation in the Republic of Malawi | GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy # 3, UNESCO, Paris, 2014. Open Access Download.
- Mapping Research and Innovation in the Republic of Zimbabwe | GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy # 2, UNESCO, Paris, 2014. Open Access Download.
- Mapping Research and Innovation in the Republic of Botswana | GO-SPIN country profiles in science, technology and Innovation policy # 1, UNESCO, Paris, 2013. Open Access Download.
Saturday, May 14, 2016
Spotting predatory events in the wild
So how can you know if a conference is predatory? Here are a few questions worth asking:
1) Is a single group organizing conferences in completely different fields? Similarly, is the scope of a conference too wide or are a variety of conferences held together in the same hotel on the same weekend? For example, an "International Conference on Arts and the Humanities" would be little use to most serious academics but great for maximizing revenues.
2) Are submissions accepted too soon? Getting accepted to legitimately peer-reviewed conferences takes time. If a proposal gets accepted in a matter of days, or before the call for papers has closed, it's worth investigating further before paying the registration fee.
3) Is the conference marketed like a holiday in the sun? Predatory conferences are often held in tourist destinations, advertised through spam and websites resembling travel brochures, and offer tours.
4) Does the conference fee seem high? Do presenters have to pay more than attendees? Forcing presenters to pay extra to make a speech should be a red flag.
5) Who and where are the organizers? Predatory conferences might not list names of all the people involved, or falsely claim the involvement of legitimate scholars. They may also list phone numbers and addresses that are either nonexistent, private homes or virtual offices. The name of the organization might imply they are based in a Western country when in fact they operate out of a developing country. Or their website fails to mention any address at all.
6) Do conference websites try too hard to give themselves a veneer of legitimacy? Look for websites plastered with a plethora of partner organizations and their logos, especially Google Scholar. Long lists of directors, international members, liaisons, advisory board members and so on should also be examined particularly carefully.
7) Has the organization or conference already been identified as suspicious? Online searches may reveal complaints or suspicions.
8) Are fees sent to a separate private company or an individual rather than the organizer itself? Unfortunately many predatory conference organizers use PayPal, which makes it harder to see where the money is really going.
Friday, May 13, 2016
Indian Cabinet approves National Intellectual Property Rights Policy | "Creative India; Innovative India: रचनात्मक भारत; अभिनव भारत"
"Creative India; Innovative India: रचनात्मक भारत; अभिनव भारत"
The Union Cabinet yesterday approved the National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy that will lay the future roadmap for intellectual property in India. The Policy recognises the abundance of creative and innovative energies that flow in India, and the need to tap into and channelise these energies towards a better and brighter future for all.
The National IPR Policy is a vision document that aims to create and exploit synergies between all forms of intellectual property (IP), concerned statutes and agencies. It sets in place an institutional mechanism for implementation, monitoring and review. It aims to incorporate and adapt global best practices to the Indian scenario. This policy shall weave in the strengths of the Government, research and development organizations, educational institutions, corporate entities including MSMEs, start-ups and other stakeholders in the creation of an innovation-conducive environment, which stimulates creativity and innovation across sectors, as also facilitates a stable, transparent and service-oriented IPR administration in the country.
The Policy recognizes that India has a well-established TRIPS-compliant legislative, administrative and judicial framework to safeguard IPRs, which meets its international obligations while utilizing the flexibilities provided in the international regime to address its developmental concerns. It reiterates India's commitment to the Doha Development Agenda and the TRIPS agreement.
While IPRs are becoming increasingly important in the global arena, there is a need to increase awareness on IPRs in India, be it regarding the IPRs owned by oneself or respect for others' IPRs. The importance of IPRs as a marketable financial asset and economic tool also needs to be recognised. For this, domestic IP filings, as also commercialization of patents granted, need to increase. Innovation and sub-optimal spending on R&D too are issues to be addressed.
The broad contours of the National IPR Policy are as follows:
Vision Statement: An India where creativity and innovation are stimulated by Intellectual Property for the benefit of all; an India where intellectual property promotes advancement in science and technology, arts and culture, traditional knowledge and biodiversity resources; an India where knowledge is the main driver of development, and knowledge owned is transformed into knowledge shared.
Stimulate a dynamic, vibrant and balanced intellectual property rights system in India to:
- foster creativity and innovation and thereby, promote entrepreneurship and enhance socio-economic and cultural development, and
- focus on enhancing access to healthcare, food security and environmental protection, among other sectors of vital social, economic and technological importance.
The Policy lays down the following seven objectives:
- i. IPR Awareness: Outreach and Promotion - To create public awareness about the economic, social and cultural benefits of IPRs among all sections of society.
- ii. Generation of IPRs - To stimulate the generation of IPRs.
- iii. Legal and Legislative Framework - To have strong and effective IPR laws, which balance the interests of rights owners with larger public interest.
- iv. Administration and Management - To modernize and strengthen service-oriented IPR administration.
- v. Commercialization of IPRs - Get value for IPRs through commercialization.
- vi. Enforcement and Adjudication - To strengthen the enforcement and adjudicatory mechanisms for combating IPR infringements.
- vii. Human Capital Development - To strengthen and expand human resources, institutions and capacities for teaching, training, research and skill building in IPRs.
These objectives are sought to be achieved through detailed action points. The action by different Ministries/ Departments shall be monitored by DIPP which shall be the nodal department to coordinate, guide and oversee implementation and future development of IPRs in India.
The National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy will endeavor for a "Creative India; Innovative India: रचनात्मक भारत; अभिनव भारत".
Cabinet decision: Intellectual Property Rights policy cleared; sops for R&D, startups
By: ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Published: May 14, 2016 | India's IPR policies are WTO-compliant, FM said in reply to concerns by developed nations on Section 3(D). The policy suggests making the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) the nodal point coordinate for IPRs in India.
The government on Friday unveiled the national intellectual property rights (IPR) policy to create a larger institutional framework to strengthen the IPR regime, with the slogan "Creative India, Innovative India". While the policy focuses on issues like expediting approval processes involving patents or trademarks and consolidating institutional mechanisms to create a robust IPR ecosystem, it refrains from suggesting any change to contentious provisions in the Patents Act, 1970, including Section 3(d) and compulsory licensing, despite concerns expressed by the US and pharma companies.
Nevertheless, the policy provides for constructive engagement "in the negotiation of international treaties and agreements in consultation with stakeholders" and likely accession to some multilateral treaties that are in India's interest. It also suggests tax incentives to boost R&D and the creation of a loan guarantee scheme to encourage start-ups and cover the risk of genuine failures in commercialisation based on IPRs as mortgageable assets.
The policy suggests making the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) the nodal point coordinate for IPRs in India, even though the onus of actual implementation of the plans of action will be on the ministries/departments concerned in their sphere of work. So, for instance, the administration of the Copyright Act, 1957 (now under the department of higher education) and the Semiconductor Integrated Circuits Layout-Design Act, 2000 (under the department of electronics and information technology) will be brought under the DIPP.
This, it is believed, will lead "to synergetic linkage between various IP offices under one umbrella". Interestingly, it seeks to protect traditional systems like Ayurveda, yoga and naturopathy — be it in oral or in codified form — from misappropriation, and also curb film piracy by suitably amending the Indian Cinematography Act, 1952.
Announcing the approval to the policy by the Cabinet, finance minister Arun Jaitley stressed that India's IPR policies are WTO-compliant. He added that one must encourage invention of life-saving drugs and at the same time "we must also be conscious of the need to make it available at a reasonable cost so that drug cost does not become prohibitive as has become in some parts of the world"
Responding to concerns expressed by developed countries like the US on Section 3(D) and compulsory licensing, Jaitley said: "We do believe that the balancing act which India has struck is responsible for lifesaving drugs available at a reasonable cost in India… So, our model seems to be both legal, equitable and WTO-compliant."
Section 3(d) prevents evergreening of drug patents. Apart from novelty and inventive step, the section provides for improvement in therapeutic efficacy a necessary condition for grant of patents when it comes to incremental inventions. Compulsory licensing allows domestic players to produce cheaper versions of patented drugs. The US and the EU have been pushing India to make appropriate changes to these provisions to boost innovation, R&D and foreign investment. Recently, releasing its annual 301 report, the US retained India on its priority watch list, citing "lack of sufficient measurable improvements" to the IP framework despite robust engagement and positive steps on intellectual property protection and enforcement by the Indian government in the last two years.
The finance minister said by 2017, trademarks can be registered within a month. Currently, in some cases, this process takes even a few years. FE