Pune: Dignitaries underlined the need to democratise science and knowledge and understand markets to reap the benefits of science at the Indian National Science Academy (INSA) anniversary meeting.
“One of the major roles we need to focus on is integrating research into the broader ecosystem. At present, while 90 percent of research funding goes to central government institutes, only 10 percent attend it. On the other hand, 90 percent of students are in state universities and colleges where there are no research activities. There is an immediate need to take research and development to a large number of institutions and people across the country,” Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, K Vijay Raghavan, said at the meeting, which was conducted through the webinar.
“The National Resource Foundation, which is on the anvil, would help distribution of quality science to a larger population of the country. Many countries have done it 25-30 years ago, and we hope it would help the democratisation of science and knowledge,” he added.
Department of Science & Technology (DST) Secretary Ashutosh Sharma pointed out that science needs direction, relevance, and a deep understanding of markets to reap benefits for society. He said that the new Science Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP 2020), which is expected to be notified in the next two months, has taken care of all the existing concerns and hindrances and would help the country use science, technology, and innovation maximally to help the economy grow.
“Indian scientists and students need to have self-confidence and self-belief in their works and be respectful to each other’s works to give their best to help the country for achieving the goal of ‘Atmnirbhar Bharat’. It will be possible if we can leverage the best of what is available and work with a problem-based approach,” Professor Sharma added at the meeting.
“DST is working to develop capacity and capability in all areas of science and technology. There has never been a better time for innovation. MSMEs and startups are in major need of skilled workers, access to high-end infrastructure, access to market, data, information, and knowledge. Data is the new raw material, and this is what our industry needs. We need to use these in optimal ways to achieve our future goals,” Secretary Sharma stressed.
Several scientists from INSA who were present at the meeting highlighted the need for greater emphasis on research and development to tackle future challenges and help the Indian economy to grow.
This information was provided by the Communications Team at the Dept. of Science & Technology, Ministry of Science & Technology.
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