India is set to unveil its new science policy next week which lays greater thrust on innovation, establishing research institutes and participation in mega science projects with an aim to positioning itself among the top five scientific powers in the world by 2020.
The Union Cabinet, at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, on Wednesday approved the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Policy-2013.
It will be released by the Prime Minister on January three at the inauguration session of the centenary edition of the Indian Science Congress in Kolkata.
“The proposed STI policy seeks to focus on both STI for people and people for STI,” officials said.
The document is a revision of the 2003 policy which sought to bring science and technology together and emphasised on the need for higher investment into Research and Development (R&D) to address national problems.
“The (STI) policy also seeks to trigger an ecosystem for innovative abilities to flourish by leveraging partnerships among diverse stakeholders and by encouraging and facilitating enterprises to invest in innovations,” the officials said.
The policy also aims at positioning India among the top five global scientific powers by 2020.
The officials said the aim of the policy is to accelerate the pace of discovery, diffusion and delivery of science-led solutions for serving the aspirational goals of India for faster, sustainable and inclusive growth.
The key features of the STI Policy, 2013 include making careers in science, research and innovation attractive and establishing world-class infrastructure for R&D for gaining global leadership in some select frontier areas of science.
The policy also includes linking contributions of science, research and innovation system with the inclusive economic growth agenda and combining priorities of excellence and relevance.
It stresses on creating an environment for enhanced private sector participation in R&D, enabling conversion of R&D outputs into societal and commercial applications by replicating successful models as well as establishing of new public-private partnership structures.
The officials said the policy would strengthen the R&D base of the country through proper funding, development and utilisation of technologies, building entrepreneurship, mounting mission mode initiatives and rejuvenating research in universities.