Collaborative innovation between firms, Govt & Academia Growing in India!

Thomson Reuters says corporations continue to drive innovation, Academia and Government contribute around 20% to the total patent activity in India .

December 16, 2015 1:30 IST | India Infoline News Service
Shaking Hands
The Intellectual Property (IP) & Science business of Thomson Reuters, the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals, launched its 2015 India Innovation Report today. The report outlines trends in innovation in Indian industry, academia and government based on patent publishing activity. Apart from the findings of the report, the 2015 Thomson Reuters India Innovation Awards along with Top 50 Indian innovators were also announced.

This is the first year when, in addition to analyzing the overall environment of innovation in India, the report also evaluates a growing momentum in the collaboration between each of these three segments. The analysis provides authoritative insights on the innovation landscape in India and recommendations to enhance collaboration between industry and academia.

Arvind Pachhapur, South Asia Head of IP & Science and Legal Business, Thomson Reuters, while launching the report, said “Globally, innovation is recognized by governments and corporations alike as the fundamental driver of economic and business growth. In India, however, the links between innovation in industry, academia and government is still in a nascent stage,” adding, “for enhanced collaboration between corporate, academia and government, a deeper understanding of the technology landscape and convergence of the respective focus areas is critical.”

Sharing his observations on the growing collaborative innovation ecosystem, Dr. R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Advisor to Government of India, said, “The key components of an excellent research and innovation ecosystem are talent, the high quality of faculty, adequate funding, strong infrastructure, an appetite for risk taking and collaboration in research.”
The analysis shows that innovation in India, as measured by the number of patents, has been rising. The innovation volume is driven strongly by industry (government and private corporations) and the presence of research and development (R&D) centers of various multinational corporations in India. In line with the Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to transform India into a global manufacturing and innovation hub, the analysis acknowledges the significance of collaboration between industry, academia and government for innovation.

Here are some of the report’s key findings:

Innovation collaboration between Corporate-Academia-Government is still in nascent stages (0.4% in patenting, 0.6% in publishing). Front runners in patenting collaboration are Tata Steel, TCS, FDC, TVS from Corporate Segment; IIT-Bombay, IISc, IIT-Delhi, IIT-Madras, Panjab University and ISI from Academia segment and CSIR topping the chart from government segment.

A major proportion of the top ten is occupied by the IT/Software and Electrical industry. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) tops the list followed by Samsung India Software operations and Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) - the only central public sector enterprise to feature in the top 10 Corporate segment list.

Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) leads with almost half the total volume of patents published in the top ten list of the Academia & Government segment followed by Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Amity University.

The top five technology focus areas for both the Corporate and Academia & Government segment differ but not entirely. Digital data processing and digital data transmission feature only in the top five for corporate and micro-organism composition and food treatment feature only in the top five focus areas of the Academia & Government.

Preparations for medicinal purposes are the key technology focus area for both the Corporate and Academia & Government segment but a deep dive within this shows slightly different focus – Preparation of herbal medicines by Academia & Government and preparation of organic active ingredients by corporations.

Corporate funding of academic research has been on the rise both in India and globally as measured by number of scientific papers funded by corporations.

In addition to the findings of the report, the 2015 Thomson Reuters India Innovation Awards were also announced. The awards honour the most innovative academic institutions and commercial enterprises headquartered in India for their spirit of innovation in R&D as it relates to Indian patent publications.  The following six award winners were announced:

Corporate Hi-Tech:
  • Indian Oil Corporation Ltd
  • Tata Steel
  • Corporate Pharma:
  • Lupin Limited
  • Cadila Healthcare
  • Academic & Government:
  • Indian Council of Agricultural Research
  • Department of Atomic Energy

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