Union Cabinet gives nod for empowered technology group to fix tech woes

A 12-member empowered technology group, headed by the Principal Scientific Adviser, is expected to develop in-house expertise in aspects of policy and use of emerging technologies. Photo: Twitter/@PrinSciAdvOff  

The Union Cabinet has approved the setting up of an empowered technology group to help address issues such as “sub-optimal industrial development”.

Among the key issues the 12-member panel headed by the Principal Scientific Adviser (PSA) will address is “dual-use technologies not being optimally commercialised”, the government said in a note. Dual-use technologies have civilian and military applications.

The group, whose members names have not been disclosed, is expected to develop in-house expertise in aspects of policy and use of emerging technologies, and ensure sustainability of technology being developed at public sector organisations.

The government said the group would also work to ensure that India had an updated map of technology and technology products available and being developed; develop an “indigenisation road map” for selected key technologies; encourage Union Ministries and departments and State governments to develop in-house expertise in policy; and use aspects of emerging technologies.

The group will also facilitate cross-sector collaborations and research alliances with universities and private companies and formulate “standards and a common vocabulary” to screen proposals for research and development.

Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said at a press briefing that the decision to set up such a group was based on recommendations of a committee led by the Principal Scientific Adviser.

“Today, all the Ministries procure their own technology, but they don’t know if it’s the latest,” Mr. Javadekar said. “This group will give advice to all ministries, agencies and PSUs,” he added

Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, who confirmed that he is in the group, said the move would be useful to coordinate research. “Say I have a technology and would like to find what other organisations could benefit from it... this mechanism is welcome,” he said.

PSA K. VijayRaghavan chairs the Prime Minister’s Science, Technology and Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC), which includes industrialists, scientists and technocrats and is tasked with recommending policy action on science and technology as well as coordinating between different Ministries.

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Printable version | Jun 12, 2021 9:01:51 PM |

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