To boost research in the field of biotechnology and facilitate interactions between institutions and industries in the city, Pune is all set to get two major clusters soon.
One of them will be a knowledge cluster, which will facilitate collaborations between research institutions, as well as between them and industries, to develop newer technologies and address common problems. Chandigarh already has such a Knowledge Cluster, called the Chandigarh Region Innovation and Knowledge Cluster.
A meeting on the issue was attended by officials from the National Centre for Cell Science (NCCS), CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), Indian Institute of Science, Education and Research (IISER), Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and select defence establishments in the city.
“We held interactions with officials from Punjab University, who had worked on setting up the Chandigarh cluster. This cluster will pool resources and people… some seed funding will be provided by government… Pune has the advantage of being home to both industries and academics. This cluster is currently being designed,” said Jayant Udgaonkar, director of IISER, Pune. An automobile hub for decades as well as an IT hub in the last decade, Pune offers opportunities for the wider application of data sciences and Artificial Intelligence. The setting up of clusters will further enable collaborations in this field.
Giving a significant push to biotechnology research in the city, the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) has awarded a handsome grant to set up the Pune Biotechnology Cluster. The operations of this cluster will be spearheaded by NCCS and IISER, Pune.
“Soon, industries, SPPU and other centres on the campus will be coming together and we are hopeful of great interactions between researchers in the field of biology,” said Udgaonkar.