Think Learn & Perform (TLP)

The Only Dedicated Platform for UPSC Mains Answer Writing

Day 50 – Q 5. Examine the factors that have constrained research and innovation capabilities in India. What measures be taken to promote indigenisation? Suggest.

5. Examine the factors that have constrained research and innovation capabilities in India. What measures be taken to promote indigenisation? Suggest.   

भारत में अनुसंधान और नवाचार क्षमताओं को बाधित करने वाले कारकों की जांच करें। स्वदेशीकरण को बढ़ावा देने के लिए क्या उपाय किए जाएंगे? सुझाव दें।


Research and innovation determines the growth trajectory of a nation and are essential for overall development be it social, economic or human development parameter.


Factors that have constrained research and innovation capabilities:

  • Low level of research investment– As per UNESCO Institute of Statistics data, India spends 0.8% in GDP on R&D, which is notably less than China’s 2% or the 2.7% of the US 0r 4.2% of Israel.
  • Lagging private sector– Insufficient scientific research in India’s private sector seems to be part of the problem. The large pharmaceutical sector, for example, remains dominated by the fabrication of generic products rather than original formulations.
  • Weak industry-academia linkage– Unlike western countries, there is disconnect between industry needs and academics creating a vacuum in research and innovation.
  • Neglect at university level– A large section of the country’s public research is concentrated in national research centres such as the S. N. Bose Center, the Raman Research Institute and organizations such as the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science. In comparison, research at universities has been neglected.
  • Lack of infrastructure– Physical as well as other enabling infrastructure is missing to help in research capabilities.
  • Insufficient FDI– FDI in India has focused on setting up back-end offices for R & D centers in developed countries.
  • Issues regarding Intellectual Property rights (IPR)– Weak enforcement of IPR rules prevent the development of innovation ecosystem in the nation.
  • Unethical practices– the urge to make illegal money, immense misuse of power, frivolous publications and patents, faulty promotion policies, victimization for speaking against wrong or corrupt practices in the management, sycophancy, and brain drain.

Measures taken by government:

  • Various schemes have been introduced to improve the quality of research institutes, for the promotion of technology business incubators (Atal Incubation Centres) and research parks that promote innovative ideas until they become commercial ventures.
  • Government procedures and approvals for scientists and researchers have been placed online and made transparent, thereby assuring “Ease of Doing Science”.
  • PM fellowship scheme aimed at encouraging young, talented, enthusiastic and result-oriented scholars to take up industry-relevant research.
  • Atal Tinkering Labs ensure that dedicated workspaces are created for students to innovate and develop ideas that will go on to transform India.
  • Platforms like “Innovate India” promote and recognise innovations happening across the nation by enabling citizens to share their innovation.
  • Unnat Bharat Abhiyan 2.0 to help bring transformational change in rural development processes by leveraging knowledge institutions to help build the architecture of an Inclusive India.
  • IMPRINT India is aimed at adopting engineering and technology as the vehicle to addressing the societal needs and achieving national prosperity
  • Forging technology and innovation partnerships with other nations like India-Israel Innovation Bridge will act as link between start-ups of India and Israel.
  • Various enabling policies like Science, Technology & Innovation Policy 2013, National Intellectual Property Rights Policy, Technology Vision Document 2035 and Space Vision India 2025 have been framed.

Way forward:

  • Increased R&D investment up to 2% of GDP
  • Improve industry-academia linkages
  • Favourable policies to boost innovation ecosystem
  • Boost to private sector
  • Attract foreign investment in research
  • Encourage grassroot level innovators
  • Strengthen IPR policy regime
  • Upgrade infrastructure


India has realized the importance of promoting research and innovation, which can be seen from the fact that it made a quantum leap of 21 places in the Global Innovation Index in two years and stands as the 57th most innovative nation in the world today.

Best answer: Gargi Gupta

Jean Grey

Print Friendly, PDF & Email