Tuesday, January 15, 2013

What is the future of Indian science?

This next few weeks I am visiting the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore. My host Arunan recently co-authored a stimulating essay Chemistry in India: Unlocking the Potential in Angewandte Chemie.
The decade since 2000 has seen exponential growth in investments in research and education. Research expenditure nearly doubled from $ 12.9 billion in 2002 to $ 24.8 billion in 2007, and further to $ 41.3 billion in 2012 (on the basis of purchasing power parity). Around 50 new universities and institutions have been started. These include 5 Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research, 9 Indian Institutes of Technology, 16 Central Universities, and several National Institutes of Technology, and National Institutes of Pharmaceutical Education and Research.
The authors critically examine whether all this investment, which should certainly be celebrated, will translate into research excellence. They are frank about some of the cultural obstacles, particularly fear of taking risks and crossing disciplinary boundaries.

It seems to me that much of the analysis may also be relevant to physics in India. Perhaps, someone would like to comment.

1 comment:

  1. Quantity versus quality is the great challenge to Third World Nations. In Brazil, for example, we need invest in basic educations firstly.