Principal Scientific Adviser K VijayRaghavan on Thursday laid stress on ramping up the research and development (R&D) infrastructure in the country and bridging the resource gap in funding innovation. Speaking at the India launch of the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2020, VijayRaghavan said the country has improved its ranking to 48 in 2019.
"It is significant. India has made it to the top 50 for the first time. It is a hard goal…," VijayRaghavan said. "We need to ramp our R&D infrastructure, ICT (Information and Communication Technology) usage, knowledge and technology output. We need to bridge the resource gap in terms of funding, innovation in a country like ours," he said.
The country's top scientist said the Economic Advisory Council has developed a report on mapping the entire R&D ecosystem in the country and it is being constantly updated in partnership with his office, the PSA said. "Our challenges here are…difficulties in raising resources when the pandemic is ravaging the global economy even as the industry and government increase investment," he observed.
VijayRaghavan said innovation is concentrated in science and technology clusters and India is pushing hard to develop initially the clusters which have already started functioning in Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Mumbai-Pune regions. "So we will push the development of these clusters in a manner similar in which other countries have done," he said.
VijayRaghavan said India excels in innovation outcome it produces, and its role in the global ICT services industry is reflected in its ICT services. "But now we must push that these ICT services are ramped up to higher and higher levels of services. That is indeed happening with importance being given to design and development in our ICT," he said.
According to the GII List-2020, released jointly by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), Cornell University and INSEAD Business School on Wednesday, the rankings show stability at the top but a gradual "eastward shift in the locus of innovation" as Asian economies like China, India, the Philippines and Vietnam have advanced considerably in the innovation ranking over the years. India moves up for positions from last year's ranking.
Switzerland, Sweden, the US, the UK and the Netherlands lead the innovation ranking, and the top 10 positions are dominated by high-income countries, WIPO said in a statement. About India, the statement said it has become the third most innovative lower middle-income economy in the world, thanks to newly available indicators and improvements in various areas of the GII.
India ranks in the top 15 in indicators such as ICT (Information and Communication Technology) services exports, government online services, graduates in science and engineering, and R&D-intensive global companies.