[Policy] Science Technology & Innovation (STI) Policy 2013: Salient features, highlights, criticism

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  1. Timeline
  2. SRISHTI
  3. Key features of the STI policy 2013
  4. Criticism

Timeline

1958
  • India’s first Scientific Policy Resolution.
1983
  • New policy. focused on the need to attain technological competence and self reliance.
2003This new policy wanted to

  1. Bring science and technology together
  2. Bring higher investment into R&D to address national problems.
2013
  • Yet another science-tech policy. (made by Department of Science and Technology).
2010-20
  • India has declared this as “decade of innovation”

SRISHTI

  • Goal of new Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STI) policy = SRISHTI.
  • SRISHTI= Science, Research and innovation system for High technology led path for India. (that is not SRISHTI….that is SRISHTLPFI, but these Government officials will forcibly turn any scheme into a catchy phrase to harass the UPSC aspirants.)

STI 2013 policy

  1. Released in the Indian Science Congress at Kolkata.
  2. use STI for faster, sustainable and more inclusive growth
  3. focus on both STI for people and people for STI.
  4. We will position India among the top five global scientific powers by 2020
  5. We’ll release more research papers.
  6. We’ll Encourage private sector to invest in Research and Development (R&D)
  7. We’ll Achieve gender parity in S&T. (meaning bring more female scientists)
  8. Global cooperation, science diplomacy.

Key features of the STI policy 2013

#1: Cash power

  • Average globle investment in Sci-tech-innovation = >1 trillion dollar (2009)
  • While India barely spends around 1% of its GDP in research, Development, innovation.
  • Therefore, Policy says, we’ll increase the spending in sci-tech-innovation to 2% in next five years.
  • HOW?= via private sector participation, PPP.
  • To increase the private sector investment in R&D, we’ll create a conductive environment (meaning we’ll increase FDI, we’ll give private cos tax reliefs, we’ll reform the IPR regulations and so on).

#2: Manpower

  • We’ll promote the spread of scientific temper amongst all sections of society.
  • We’ll try to attract talented and bright minds towards careers in science, research and innovation.
  • We’ll increase the number of R&D personnel by 66% in next five years.
  • We’ll create environment for women to enter in R&D field.
  • we’ll setup inter university centers= bringing together different disciplines of humanities and science together.

#3: Business

  • We’ll identify 10 sectors of high potential and put more resources into it for S&T.
  • India’s share in high tech products is around 8% globally. We want to double this.
  • We’ll increase R&D intentsity in Service sector, small and medium scale enterprises.
  • The investment in S&T is risky. So, We (Government) will share the risk with private sector, this will increase their confidence.
  • We’ll provide new financing mechanisms for entrepreneurs (=loans at cheaper interest rate) so they can venture in R&D without the fear of failure.
  • We’ll create a public procurement policy that favors indigenous innovations. (for example, if new type of pencil is developed by Indians and S.Koreans, then Government departments will buy Indian pencils rather than Korean pencils)
  • We’ll achieve synergy between R&D policy for agriculture vs. STI policy.

#4: Climate change

  • We already Development National Action plan for Climate Change (NAPCC). The STI policy will play active role in this.

#5: PPP

  • We’ll setup a National science, Technology and innovation foundation. This will help investing in S&T projects via PPP.
  • We’ll setup large scale R&D facilities via PPP mode.
  • When it comes to giving public funds, we’ll treat private sector R&D institutions at par with public sector institutions.

#6: IPR

  • We’ll modify the Intellectual property rights(IPR) for social goods, IPR generated under PPP.
  • We’ll launch Technology business incubators (TBIs) and science-led entrepreneurship.
  • We’ll provide incentives for green manufacturing.
  • For sharing IPRs between Investors and inventors, we’ll setup regulatory and legal framework.

#7: Participation

Inclusion

  • We’ll increase accessibility, availability and affordability of innovations, especially for women, differently-abled and disadvantaged sections of society.

NGOs

  • We’ll give NGOs pivotal role for delivery science-tech-innovation outputs especially related with rural / grassroot level.
  • Lot of new grassroot innovations are taking place, but they donot transform into commercial applications, we’ll try to bridge this gap.
  • Various ministries associated with socio-economic sectors, are already running schemes for R&D in their sector. Under new STI policy, we’ll try to leverage and coordinate these spending.

State Governments

  • State Governments are important stakeholders, so we’ll setup state specific plans under new STI policy and we’ll also strengthen the Sci-Tech councils / boards in the States.
  • Centrally developed plans for investments are rigid. We’ll provide flexible approach, to fine-tune Five year plan schemes in response to rapid changes in S&T.

International

  • We’ll forge strategic partnerships and alliances with other nations through both bilateral and multilateral cooperation in science, technology and innovation.
  • Modern science requires truckload of resources. So we’ll setup some international consortia with other countries to create high cost global infrastructure.
  • Science diplomacy, technology synergy with other countries.

#8: Public awareness

  • People must be made aware of the implications of particular science-tech-R&D initiatives- be it ethical, social or economic. (so that Jholachhap NGOs funded by “Videshi Taaqat”(foreign powers), cannot use them as cannon fodder during protests against BT brijnal, Nuke powers etc.)
  • We will release white papers on new science projects to generate awareness.

Criticism

#1: private sector =no social good

  1. On one hand, STI policy wants inclusive Development and social goods. But on the other hand, it says the investment in R&D sector is very low and we’ll bring more investment from private sector.
  2. Here comes the problem: When private sector invests in R&D, their aim is always profitability.
  3. They’re not much interested in delivery of social goods.
  4. For example a drug company would rather prefer to do research on new diabetes related drug / supplement rather than some new product to combat malnutrition. Same way, iphone6 vs. clean energy / water recycling.
  • In this policy, Government says additional R&D investment will come from private sector = indirectly they’re hinting that we (the State) are not interested in R&D investment because we want to control fiscal deficit. But history tells us that no country, has developed without massive State investment in R&D.

#2: Indian private sector is lazy in research

  • Government  is already giving many tax reliefs to Indian corporates so they can invest more in research, buying / import necessary machinery without hassle etc. yet they donot invest that much in R&D compared to their American counterparts.
  • We take pride in our IT sector. But our IT sector is mostly involved in the back-office tasks and software coding for international giants like Google, Microsoft and Apple. We don’t have an Indian brand of our own, that can compete with them.
  • Research – Development has long gestation period. Indian businessmen are more concerned with short term gains. Therefore, Government is over-confident when it expects that Indian private sector to invest lot of money in R&D.

#3: no lesson from past

  • The new STI policy doesn’t provide any analysis / reason why the last three policies failed. And what precautions will they take to make sure this new policy won’t be another #EPICFAIL.
  • For example, It says India is not investing much in R&D sector, …there is need to attract more manpower towards science-research field….all these things have been repeated  thousands of times in previous speeches of Presidents and prime ministers and policies.

#4: No structural / fundamental reforms

  • To break the stalemate in research – development, Government needs to fundamentally reform the higher education, the funding and autonomy of universities, IITs, IIMs etc.
  • No amount of private sector investment can compensate the loss through brain drain. (and the Nobel prizes lost because of it). But the STI policy is not much concerned with this angle.

#5: Conflicting Goals And Policies

Policy document repeatedly emphasizes that both economic growth and social good will be pursued through STI. But there are two sets of problems here,

  1. Can private sector funded R&D directly deliver social goods?
  2. Can science really tackle the social sector problems (gender parity, inclusiveness) on its own, without the necessary political will?

Mock Questions

Mains

  1. Write a note on the New Science Tech Innovation Policy of 2013. (12/15 marks)

Essay

  1. Gender Parity
  2. Green Economy
  3. Role of Science technology and innovation in social empowerment.

Decision Making question for CSAT paper II

Ok this is a non-serious question:

You are a Joint Secretary in Department of Science and Technology. And you have designed a really great scheme for nuclear research / climate change / sustainable Development or whatever. But your proposed scheme doesn’t have a catchy name / phrase / abbreviation. Your boss says he’ll not forward your file to cabinet approval unless you come up with a catchy name. What will you do?

  1. Ask your colleagues, facebook friends, wife, children, neighbors and relatives to help you get a catchy name.
  2. Name the scheme after Nehru Gandhi family and directly forward the file to minister, bypassing your boss.
  3. Start from scratch. Throw away the file. Then First think of a catchy name and then design a scheme that fits into that name.
  4. Forget about the scheme, go home and watch TV.
[Policy] Science Technology & Innovation (STI) Policy 2013: Salient features, highlights, criticism




So far 52 Comments posted

  1. Fanish khulbe

    Hi Mrunal,
    Mrunal, in your previous article of Eco survey ch – 4, You told that RBI and GoI use WPI for policy making and not The GDP-deflator ( bcoz it is published quarterly and not weekly/monthly).
    I want to know that if this is the real reason or the main reason is based on the items and weight assigned to items , that help RBI and GoI to focus on the selected items , as WPI does not include , services ; while GDP-deflator comprises everything in the economy and that too with weight as according to the real produce of that particular item in economy . so if GOI use GDP-deflator for policy making it can not focus more on selected items . Although GDP deflator comprises everything that can be hard to compute in a week but if it is done in 3 months it can surely be done in a week / month too.

    Please clear my doubt.
    and yes I cant post comments at your post. what may be the reason . did you banned me or what.

  2. Saurav

    Add this policy to drug policy of GOI and we will find out how the government is contradicting itself. Because of the blind licensing of drugs( which is gud for masses,but it generates a lot of employment,patent and $) companies are leaving india.

  3. Yashpal

    One of the catchy name schemes is Green Action for National Dandi Heritage Initiative. (GANDHI). I find it quite amusing…. :)

  4. Fanish khulbe

    DOUBT – DOUT – DOUBT

    Mrunal KINDLY THOW SOME LIGHT :—–

    Mrunal, in your previous article of Eco survey ch – 4, You told that RBI and GoI use WPI for policy making and not The GDP-deflator ( bcoz it is published quarterly and not weekly/monthly).
    I want to know that if this is the real reason or the main reason is based on the items and weight assigned to items , that help RBI and GoI to focus on the selected items , as WPI does not include , services ; while GDP-deflator comprises everything in the economy and that too with weight as according to the real produce of that particular item in economy . so if GOI use GDP-deflator for policy making it can not focus more on selected items . Although GDP deflator comprises everything that can be hard to compute in a week but if it is done in 3 months it can surely be done in a week / month too.

    Please clear my doubt.
    and yes I cant post comments at your post. what may be the reason . did you banned me or what.

    1. Aditya

      Hello Fanish,

      GDP deflator can not be used for policy making. For, it combines all the goods and services with their respective weightage or better say output. When output multiplies with the product value, it distorts the real picture. If product A (output 100 units) rises by 3% and has a value of Rs.200 and if Product B (output 10 units)rises by 10% ,but its value is only Rs. 50: you can calculate that even with a small increase in the price of product A will heavily outweigh a significant rise in the price of B.

      Compare this with WPI which does not include weightage(output) of individual products and invloves a smaller catalogue of goods.For goods and services both, government uses CPI. So, it becomes easy to identify price rise in specific segments,as the case might be. This helps the government to identify supply shortages or demand pressures in these segments, thus guiding them towards appropriate action.

      A reason why GDP deflator data is published quarterly is because production in an economy is always measured in long spans of time and not in short spans(weekly). A shorter span data would present a false picture of the movements in the economy. Also, a longer span data can be well compared with the last year quarterly data for yearwise comparisons, for predicting growth, inflation etc.

  5. somit

    sir, please do continue with your earlier practice of mentioning the ‘sources’ at the end of your articles!

  6. Usha

    I will go with Option B..when that’s such a great scheme it needs to be implemented..but yes, it will again put the Nehru’s in the limelight ;-)

  7. pankaj K.

    Hi
    I have sended IPOs & other details for the subscription of Kurukshetra & Yojana magzine two months back but yet not received it.How can i trace it.
    Sir pls reply.

  8. Waseem

    The indigenous effort of space and atomic energy department for progress is an indication of the of the capability to which our country is self reliant, it is critical not to forget the critical role of indigenous innovations in improving livelihood and well being, to reiterate what Nehru said ” it is science alone that can solve the problems of hunger and poverty, of in sanitation and illiteracy”

    what is needed here in India is innovative methods to change mindset of people and we should integrate science with sociology, behavioral and psychology so that “everyday life is more meaningful and richer in depth and content”.

  9. N S

    I have sended IPOs & other details for the subscription of Kurukshetra & Yojana magzine three months backand they subscribed for me also for both the magzines but yet not received it.How can i trace it.
    plz reply sir,

  10. Aiman Reyaz

    It would be really nice if you would also notify us about other public service commission exams. for example in thetop of the page the notification of UPSC and LIC are given so it would be very good if you also notify us of other state publiic service commission exams. for example, UPPSC notification came a week ago but i came toknow of it today only and i am not from Uttar pradesh, am i still elgibile?, what kind of exam is that, similar to Civil services, but only of state level? please reply

  11. abhishek singh

    answer to the non serious question
    Yahan sirf nehru gandhi bikta hai so option 2 is the best one and it may the person getting quick promotion

  12. shalinee

    Actually i am preparing myself,,,,,i am following your blog regularly,,,,i am verymuch obliged to you,,,
    Can u helpme ut for 30 days revision plan,,,,for UPSC

  13. shivendra

    my interview for csm 2012 was on 18.03.2013 in sri puroshottam aggarwal board. my subject is geography an sociology. what are my chances.

  14. madhurya das

    between A and C….A IS SHOWING COOPERATION . CONFUSED. THOUGH I PREFER OPTION C for the non serious question

  15. Aiman Reyaz

    Mrunal please reply. It is very difficult to know the notification about other state public service commission exams, so it would be very helpful for us if you notify us aabout them.

  16. CHARUSAT PATEL

    Can any one please tell me if I am appear in IFoS then will it count the attempt for civil services exam?

    please reply me soon because last date of submission of form is 4/4/2013.

    Hey IITian please help me.

  17. CHARUSAT PATEL

    Hey can any help me , if I am appearing for IFoS then will it count the attempt for civil services.

    please reply me fast. because last date of submission is 4/4/2013 ?

    hey IITian please reply ..

  18. M.M

    The STI policy says that it aims to increase the private participation in R&D. How has the supreme court judgement against Novartis patent case effected this policy, since the con of the judgement is that there will be less private companies coming up for R&D in india

    1. Ashok Suthar

      The judgement could look little biased towards the encouragement for generic drugs, but the intent of judgement is quite justified.

      Yes, with this the foreign investments would directly get affected and will force the foreign players to take cautious moves in the go , thereby making them more reluctant to R&D investments in India.

  19. Ratatouille

    Have to point out:Very surprisingly there’s a mistake!…STI policy was unveiled in Jan 2013 ,not March 2013 as stated in your blog!

  20. Aashay Marathi

    Indian Patent Law 2005, Novartis case Refer the Hindu of 04th April 2013 if at all anybody wants some detailed insights I you can ask me. :)

  21. mohit

    hi dear I heard lot of you.Dear .Please suggest the things which should be in STI policy in uttar pradesh.which sectors should be focus more in the state.

  22. Dr SKM

    Mrunal, plz help to clear Csat 2014 . As this would b my last chance and attempt.Kindly tell me how I plan my time effectively as I am currently working .

  23. VIVEK

    THE WAY YOU ELUCIDATE THE FACT IS AWESOME SIR …………….SERIOUSLY ITS TOO GOOD ANY LAYMAN CAN UNDERSTAND THE CORE OF THE CONCEPT AND NO LUDICROUS THINGS. EVERY ADDITIONAL FACTS WHICH INCORPORATE WILL MAKES AN ASPIRANT RELIEF.
    I FEEL GREAT-FULL THAT I KNOW SUCH WEBSITE

    HATS OF YOU SIR

  24. utkarsh

    sir can you plz put all the imp. science and tech articles from 2012 dec to 2013 oct in a single page?

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