India’s bilateral collaborations to drive tech innovation

IGSTC is a joint initiative by India's Department of Science & Technology and Germany's Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
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AI is a critical multiplier for India’s digital economy, said Rajeev Chandrasekhar, union minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology. Over the years, the Indian government has launched various initiatives to boost THE technology sector. Besides, India is also partnering with multiple countries to tap the potential of these technologies. Let’s take a look at some of these collaborations.

Germany

Earlier this month, Indo-German Science and Technology Centre (IGSTC) announced plans to propose a joint AI initiative on healthcare and sustainability. IGSTC is a joint initiative by India’s Department of Science & Technology and Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

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Both parties agreed to explore opportunities for bilateral cooperation in funding research projects and to initiate and intensify long-term Indo-German cooperative relationships in research. Further, they also agreed to consider establishing International Research Training Groups (IRTG) programmes with other scientific departments.

Finland

Last month, the Indian government signed a deal with Finland to establish a virtual network centre on quantum computing. Both nations further discussed the possible areas of cooperation and a clearcut roadmap of collaboration to take India to the next level in quantum computing. 

The Finland India Quantum Network (FIN-Q n) is a joint effort driven by the Department of Science and Technology and Finland’s Ministry for Employment and Economic Affairs. The idea is to create a sandbox environment for quantum researchers that will translate to effective networking both on inter and intra-country levels. 

The Business Finland India unit envisages a common corridor for quantum experts to share their ideas and work together in achieving the quantum edge. 

“From the Finnish side, we have Quantum corporations like IQM, Vexlum, Bluefors, QuantrolOx, along with other academic institutions. While on the Indian side, we can expect large system integrators, quantum startups, leading institutions, etc,” said Aasheesh Chudasama, head of Innovation Collaboration at Business Finland, Embassy of Finland.

US

India and the US launched the Indo-US Science and Technology Forum’s US India Artificial Intelligence (USIAI) Initiative. Both nations will focus on AI cooperation in critical areas that are priorities for both countries. 

The initiative will facilitate discussions on opportunities and challenges for bilateral AI research. It will also help both countries collaborate on AI innovation and develop an AI workforce. 

India and the US will also explore the use of AI in healthcare, agriculture, energy, manufacturing, and building smart cities.

Earlier this year, both nations also agreed to hold a dialogue on AI and further joint innovation and cooperation in new domains.

Singapore

The Department of Science and Technology and Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) earlier this year during the India-Singapore Technology Summit 2022. The agreement will enhance cooperation in science, technology and innovation.

DST also signed an agreement with Enterprise Singapore to foster cooperation between organisations in both countries to develop new innovative technologies and solutions.

According to the minister-in-charge of Trade Relations S Iswaran, the areas in which both countries could collaborate include deeptech, cleantech, renewable energy, and genome and bioinformatics research.

Japan

During External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s visit to Japan in 2020, he met his Japanese counterpart Toshimitsu Motegi and discussed potential collaboration opportunities on tech.

In this context, the Ministry of External Affairs said the agreement promotes cooperation in capacity building, research and development, security and resilience in Critical Information Infrastructure, 5G, IoT, and AI.
In 2021, during the ‘India-Japan Science and Technology Seminar’ Dr M Ravichandran, secretary, DST, announced that both nations have established three joint India-Japan laboratories in ICT, AI, and Big data.

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Pritam Bordoloi
I have a keen interest in creative writing and artificial intelligence. As a journalist, I deep dive into the world of technology and analyse how it’s restructuring business models and reshaping society.

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