The Commerce and Industry Ministry will soon set up a team of experts to consider in detail issues raised by the Global Innovation Index report and suggest ways to further improve India’s ranking.
India has been ranked 66th on a list of most innovative economies, jumping 15 places from last year, according to a new UN report – Global Innovation Index 2016. The report has called for more transparent policies if the country aspires to become a global driver of innovation.
"I will form a group to look into the results of this report. It will go in depth as in what is there in it. Not just ranking, but the identified weaknesses and challenges," Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said here at a CII function.
She said the team of experts will "quickly advise the government on where we should take a step back or where we should move forward".
The group, which will have representation from outside, will be formed in a few days.
"It is more to look at the report in depth, identify the challenges in order to solve those issues and advise the government as to which direction we have to move (in)," she added.
Although India’s ranking improved this year, the team will suggest ways to further improve it next year. It is expected to facilitate environment for promoting innovation in the country.
"Steps will have to be identified by this group based on what the report says," she said, pointing to future departmental participation.
The report has stated that India shows weakness in two sub-pillars of business environment and education.
The Global Innovation Index ranks innovation performance of 128 countries and economies around the world, based on 82 indicators.
On ‘jugaad’ or frugal innovation, she said in a country where resources are scarce, "you have to adapt to jugaad".
To references that Indian innovation is capable of only jugaad activity, the minister said: "I am sorry. No, that was only a survival technique."
Citing the example of Mangalyaan, she said: "Isn’t that frugal?… Keep your expenses optimum, but also come out with something that is going to make a difference."
She wanted the Niti Aayog, the policy think-tank, to look at a system of not driving children to perform only in a predictable examination. "It is unpredictability which is going to bring in performance and innovation," she added.
Speaking at the event, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said India is becoming a centre for innovation and hoped that its ranking will jump substantially next year.
According to Niti Aayog Principal Advisor Ratan P Watal, it is in the middle of preparations of a 15-year development vision document linked with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).