Ninety percent of the country’s students go to colleges and universities where little research is done despite the proximity to major research institutes, and this needs to be rectified, the Centre’s senior scientific adviser K said on Friday. VijayRagahvan.
Addressing the CII Lifesciences Conclave, he stressed the need for industry and scientific agencies to work together.
VijayRagahvan noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought scientific agencies together in an extraordinary way.
He said the country’s research ecosystem was well distributed – the Department of Biotechnology, the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR), the Department of Science, technology and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) – which is “absolutely mind-boggling”.
These institutes have enormous intellectual, material and other infrastructure resources and these capacities must be harnessed, he noted.
Likewise, there are nearly 70 to 75 central universities and hundreds of public and private universities across the country.
“Ninety percent of research support goes to labs where 10 percent of our students go. Ninety percent of our students attend universities / colleges where there is little research. Yet they’re literally a stone’s throw from the best places to search and that’s something that needs to be rectified, ”the official said.
He said it is a “salt-pepper mixture” and that provides a solution.
If all the agencies come together, the national network of resource labs may be available to both industry and these colleges and universities, suggested VijayRaghavan.
Other countries are trying it as well, but they will not try it on the scale possible in India due to its population and network of connectable labs and the basic simplicity of research.
This is something that we must undertake, he stressed.
The Senior Science Advisor (PSA) added that the slavery of several types of unnecessary regulations must end. Reform in the academic and industrial space, regulation, academia and research – all are constant processes.
Speaking about the collaboration between industry and the country’s scientific agencies during the pandemic, VijayRaghavan said that there is a great danger that looks like a rubber band that is torn.
“Now, as the pandemic subsides, the elastic band is narrowing again and reverting to its old ways. We cannot go back to our old ways. Our science and our industry must work together, ”he added.
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