For unleashing India’s innovation potential

TIFAC, during 2007-08, was entrusted with World Bank supported task of preparing a Detailed Project Report (DPR) for National Innovation Project (NIP) which targeted unleashing India’s innovation potential. This was to be designed- based on national and international best practices- to improve, expand and scale-up ongoing innovation led initiatives on one hand and introduce fresh initiatives for higher impact on growth and poverty alleviation, on the other. Further, it was required to cover public policy, action areas and specific support programmes to position innovation as a driver of productivity, sustained growth and poverty reduction.

The DPR was to cover three major components

Component I- Strengthening innovation management & capacity building-   including interventions such as strengthening the IPR system, better use of Diaspora networks and enhancing the absorptive capacity and technology infusion in SMEs

Component II- Providing support to SMEs for research leading to new technology development- though suitable adoption/ adaptation of models such as the SBIR programme of the US.

Component III- Strengthening technology commercialization- basically interventions to support taking innovations to market, including those from grass-root/ rural innovators. A new entity that could operate a fund-of-funds and support facilitation for technology upscaling/ commercialization was also to be suggested.

With an eye on finer details of these components, studies/ concept notes were commissioned on following topics

  • MSMEs – Innovation and Technology Absorption
  • Intellectual Property Rights systems
  • Accessing Global Knowledge
  • Experiences of SBIR Types Schemes in select Asian countries
  • Strengthening Technology Commercialization
  • Structure and Operation of Incubation Fund
  • Possible business models for firms providing technology facilitation and intermediation services

With a view to make the studies as comprehensive as possible, TIFAC organized two Workshops with US National Academies of Sciences in Delhi and Mumbai. This facilitated interactions between the consultants engaged for different components and the stake-holders. The DPR was completed in June 2008 and submitted to the World Bank through DST.