Technology plays a fundamental role in wealth creation and improving the quality of life, thereby driving real economic growth and transformation in any society. Over the past few years, the highly evolved digital era has resulted in unprecedented changes in the technology businesses and the society as a whole.
India aspires to become a US$5 trillion economy over the next few years and it is being increasingly recognized as one of the leading economies in the world. Technology leadership will be the primary gateway to achieve this economic goal.
India has successfully established itself as a leader in industrialisation and technological development, with the advent of industry 4.0, digital supply chain, digital assistance etc. These technologies are playing a critical role in the economic revival of the country by enabling the Indian industry to rebuild India’s economic status.
The key imperatives for achieving these aspirational targets would include strong leadership in technology, innovation and research and significant investments by Indian businesses in futuristic technologies; a very active and engaged private sector with a strong focus on R&D and innovation; a stronger National Research Quad comprising of industry-academia research labs, startups; and collaborations with other nations with a proven track record of nurturing an effective technology ecosystem.
Over the last few years, India has made significant strides in technology development and deployment. Having moved up 35 places on the Global Innovation Index over the past 6 years, from a rank 81 in 2015 to 46 in 2021, India also ranks third globally, in terms of research publications. It is the third most attractive investment destination for technology transactions and has the third largest start-up ecosystem.
Technology is now transforming various fields and creating new opportunities across sectors. However, the biggest challenges in adopting these futuristic technologies include the resistance to change, challenges in implementing the right systems and procedures, non-availability of skilled manpower, inappropriate data monitoring, market size and the need for huge investments in appropriate research and infrastructure.
Secondly, unlike other developed economies where more than 70% contribution of Gross Domestic Expenditure on Research and Experimental Development (GERD) comes from the private sector, India’s private sector contribution to GERD is only 37%. A major part of the R&D investment is done by the Government, which contributes 56% to GERD in the form of investments in research and academia.
With the rapidly evolving global technology landscape, the Indian private sector needs to boost its R&D investment for being significant and ready for the next phase of growth, for which the private sector must identify relevant technologies to invest in.
Platforms like GITA (Global Innovation & Technology Alliance), a public private partnership between Technology Development Board, Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, and CII, offer models for global R&D collaborations. Corporates can also invest in technology business incubators or contribute to research efforts carried out by institutions and national research laboratories, taking forward their CSR initiatives.
Today, the startups and India’s young talent are responsible for a thriving technology driven economy, creating wealth, and simultaneously generating sizeable employment. Many startups are now disrupting markets and creating new growth avenues. While the rising number of unicorns attests to the vibrancy of the ecosystem, many soon to be unicorns and young new enterprises are attracting huge investor interest.
To further accelerate the momentum towards these new age technologies, India needs a robust policy framework. It also needs to further the agenda of skilling and training of tech talent, in order to attract significant foreign and domestic investment in technology.
Join the CII Business Summit 2022 to understand how disruptive technologies can offer immense opportunities to business enterprises and help the Indian Industry gain a competitive edge on a global platform.
Dates: 11-12 May, 2022 Register at CIi.in/ciiannualsummit2022