21 Apr 2012

Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh Addresses Indo-UK Science and innovation Council in London

The third meeting of the Indo-UK Science and Innovation Council took place in London on 18 April 2012. The meeting was led by the Ministers of the two Countries. Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh, Minister for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences led the Indian delegation and Mr. David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science was the head of the UK delegation. 

In discussing the future of the relationship, and in particular, the direction to be taken in the period 2012-2014, both delegations agreed to focus on the following thematic priorities: 

• Sustainable energy including nuclear 
• Food production and food security
• Water supply and security
• Health and disease
• Advanced manufacturing
• Innovation including social impact and intellectual property
• Research and science policy

Some key collaborations were identified including: 

a. Between DST and EPSRC in Applied Maths
b. Between DST /and EPSRC in Smart Grids
c. Between BBSRC and DBT in Sustainable Crop Production research for International Development (SCPRID) including, Bioenergy, Livestock Health and Crop Science

d. Between DST and the Royal Society - Networking Schemes: India – UK Scientific Seminars

e. Continued joint work to develop an Intellectual Property management guide to facilitate timely consideration of IP management issues in research collaborations. 

Both counties agreed that innovation and translation of research are key policy challenges and this was reflected in the discussion and in new agreements to work closely. In addition, it was agreed that initiatives are needed that will help innovative businesses and academia in India and the UK to collaborate: 

a. The UK Technology Strategy Board (TSB) working with UK Trade & Investment will expand its successful Entrepreneurs missions with the first mission to India – Bangalore - in the area of web technologies. 
b. The UK Technology Strategy Board will explore an international version of the Knowledge Transfer Partnerships scheme with India. 
c. The Technology Strategy Board will explore the development of joint programmes with the Global Innovation and Technology Alliance (GITA). 
d. The UK Technology Strategy Board will explore establishing links with the Technology Development Board India. 

India and UK agreed to explore opportunities to work together on innovation metrics, interaction with SMEs, innovation collaboration, young researchers networking, virtual network centres and diversity and equality issues in science. 

Both sides have also agreed to further discussion in the areas of cybersecurity, supercomputing, biological information research resources and knowledge sharing; electronic systems engineering design, applied mathematics, fluid dynamics in applied mathematics and earth sciences, particle physics, monsoon modelling and quality of engineering education. 

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