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Scientists see an opportunity to harness innovation for growth, jobs at Science Congress

The five-day event, which is being hosted by the MU this year, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on January 3.

Written by Mihika Basu | Mumbai | Updated: January 3, 2015 12:13:24 pm

With the 102nd Indian Science Congress focusing on the theme “science and technology for human development”, eminent scientists who will be participating in the five-day event said this could be an ideal platform to give a thrust to India’s ‘make in India’ or ‘make for India’ campaigns, simultaneously creating job opportunities and translating laboratory innovations into societal applications.

“The Science Congress brings together renowned personalities in one place and helps recap achievements through discussions and brings focus on the way forward. The underlining aspect of make in India is job creation, generation of wealth for the country, besides working to produce goods and services with new dimensions to science and technology, that is relevant to the country. There are plenty of resources to tap in our country, from renewable resources to nuclear energy. The Congress will help channelise discussions in those areas where it can be converted to generation of jobs,” said India’s Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) chairman R K Sinha.

The five-day event, which is being hosted by the MU this year, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on January 3.

According to Dr Anil Kakodkar, former AEC chairman, in a knowledge-driven era, networking between different kinds of people like educationists, researchers, entrepreneurs and investors is critical and the Science Congress creates the right ecosystem for it.

“A Science Congress is a big event with large participation and there are opportunities to channelise lot of energies and thoughts,” he said.

“Science is the driving principle for which society makes progress. So, I would expect scientists to participate in the discussions and contribute to them, else we won’t be able to realise and meet the main purpose of having such an event. Policy makers are also participating in the Congress, so it’s a way of bridging the gap between scientists and policymakers,” said Dr Naba Mondal, senior professor at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai, who has been working on the India-based Neutrino Observatory.

While the Science Congress is being held in Mumbai after 45 years, scientists said that such a mega event will also help inspire students, who do not have a big representation in the Science Olympiads.

Dr Sunil Mukhi, scientist at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Pune, said that his expectations from an event like this is that it should spread the sense that science is logical, positive and beneficial to the people, both in short-term and long-term.

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