India Science and Technology 2010-11
NISTADS, New Delhi, India
In today's global economy, the ability of a country to develop, adapt and harness its innovative potential is becoming critical for its long term economic performance. This fact acknowledged by the endogenous growth literature has generated proactive policy initiatives as reflected in the focus on innovation as a top government policy agenda in most developing and emerging economies of the world. India is no exception to this trend. Recently, the President of India has declared the present decade as the decade of innovation and the Prime Minister has called upon the country's scientists to unleash the best innovative potential in the innovation decade. Even though India is yet to formally adopt a national innovation policy, the different ministries and departments associated with various sectors have articulated and budgeted for three main innovation policy challenges: enhancing innovation potential in new technologies, building technological capabilities and competitiveness in the manufacturing and service sector and reconfiguring the formal and informal sectors. In this context, India's S&T Report 2010-11, the sequel to India S&T 2008 has been designed with innovation as its core concept. Thus the central focus of this year report is to identify the nature and extent of innovative activities in the country, to identify the lacunae in the innovation support mechanism and to suggest S&T interventions in the policy matrix so that India could be in the forefront on innovation activities.
India S&T Report 2010-11 is organised under following five themes: (i) S&T and Human Resources, (ii) S&T and Innovation Support System, (iii) S&T and Industry, (iv) S&T Outputs and Patents, and (v) S&T and Rural Development Strategies. While the content and approach of these five themes differ from each other, innovation occupies the central stage in each of these themes.
The theme S&T Human Resource presents different facets of S&T education in India. The coverage includes primary level of education, secondary level education as well as tertiary level of education. Moreover, this theme has also looked at the development in the sphere of professional educational namely technical as well as medical levels. Last but not least, this theme also gives detailed status of vocational education taking into account the skill development mission.
The theme S&T and Innovation Support System analyses the existing organisational arrangement for promotion of technological innovation in India. It encompasses not only organisations that are created specifically to promote innovation but also those that address issues that are considered as important components of innovations. The organisations are identified at different administrative levels extending from national, state, and district to field/village level. In the present edition of the Report, the focus is on the secondary sector of the economy.
The theme S&T and Industry analyses the various facets of innovation activities in the realm of manufacturing and service sector of modern India. Policy space, enabling environment for innovation, support mechanism, and performance of selected sectors in the realms of innovation – all occupies a place in this theme. The focus has also been on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) of India in this theme to identify the tardiness in growth in this sector. In any economy, MSMEs play a significant role in respect of employment generation. In view of jobless growth of recent years, invigorating India's MSME sector through innovation is need of the hour. Further, we have attempted to address emerging green issues in this theme in view of India's commitment to green economy agenda.
The theme S&T Output and Patents assess to what extent a country is generating new knowledge and whether any 'tangible' component can be derived from it that can be appropriated by firms and/or other institutions in the country. Research papers (primarily in peer reviewed journals) and patents are the most commonly used 'proxy' to assess the intensity of knowledge creation and utilisation. So in this theme, the performance indicators – scientific publication and patents in particular – are analysed to understand India's performance in recent years.
The theme S&T and Rural Development: Strategies and Capacities presents an overview of S&T strategies for rural development in India. The focus is on understanding the S&T capacities that exist, and how the knowledge and technologies are accessed and used for rural development. Given the development agenda of Indian economy, this theme is centred around three sub-themes namely (a) Rural development: S&T strategy for poverty alleviation, (b) S&T strategies for agri/farm based livelihoods and (c) S&T strategies for non-farm/rural industrial development.
The report is targeted at a wide readership ranging from policy makers and advisors to academic readers as well as the common person. The contents of the report are:
- S&T Human Resource
- S&T and Innovation Support System
- S&T and Industry
- S&T Output and Patents
- S&T and Rural Development: Strategies and Capacities