Written by Dr Malvika Desai Thursday, 02 February 2012 04:03
India, in the recent past, has become a vibrant laboratory for innovations in the 21st century, India's innovation initiative has brought the country on the forefront and made it walk with confidence towards the inclusive growth in India. The nation, like other South Asian colonies, on winning her political freedom was plagued by issues which were more internal. Social prejudices, orthodoxy , casteism, theistic moorings, gender discrimination rendered futile the long-drawn battle for Independence, which eventually came in 1947 and brought about a disillusionment that Independence was a shift of power from Mountbatten to Nehru followed by India's tryst with modernity. A growing national consciousness and the leadership of Indira Gandhi guided the nation towards a revolution focusing a great deal on the development of science and technology in India and towards nurtuing innovative business ideas in India.
The "Green Revolution" that brought about a sea-change in agricultural technology during the 1960s and 1970s and sowed the seed of inclusive growth in India, was an innovation par excellence -- an instance of a relatively successful technology transfer, irrespective of some latent problems. The development of science and technology in India began when changes were instituted in place of the "traditional" agricultural practice involving methods whose etymological make-up goes back thousands of years.
India Innovation Initiatives put India on her way to increasingly becoming a leader in global innovation – ranging from India's broader economic and institutional regime, with a priority on promoting stronger competition among enterprises to unleash innovation and tap innovative business ideas in India, to more specific areas like research and development (R&D) and intellectual property rights (IPR), foreign investment and technology transfer, grassroots innovation, testing, quality services, education and skills, telecommunications infrastructure, high-speed research networks, and early-stage technology development.
India innovation initiative is primarily driven by the development of science and technology in India – high-end technology and R&D. However, high-end technology and R&D are only two of several sources of innovation. The zeal to innovate is not just an upper class, urban phenomena among the Western-educated elites, but India's rural innovators are churning out products catering to specific requirements of the "aam janta".
Innovation and competitiveness have a dynamic, mutual relationship; innovation thrives in a competitive environment and plays a key role in the achievement of such an environment. It generates economic value, new jobs in the economy and cultures of entrepreneurship and also promotes economic growth and leads to inclusive growth in India. Considering India's potential to innovate, the optimal performance has not yet been achieved.
About 90% of Indian workers are employed in informal sectors, which are often characterized by underemployment as well as low-productivity and low-skill activities. These are the things which are thwarting the prospect of growth in India.