Union Minister for Science & Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh said, Indo-Swedish companies must support start-ups from both sides, and undertake collaborative research and human resource exchange.
Addressing the 9th edition of the India- Sweden Innovation Day through virtual mode, Dr Jitendra Singh said, collaborative research and joint StartUps ecosystem will help build a shared future by harnessing the power of science, technology and innovation for social good.
Referring to the joint projects having significant potential to improve public health, nursing or care in India and Sweden, Dr Jitendra Singh informed that in 2020, the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India, and Vinnova, Government of Sweden announced grant funding to implement projects aimed at producing new solutions which, aided by artificial intelligence (AI), have significant potential to improve public health.
Dr Jitendra Singh recalled that in April 2019, India and Sweden announced the India-Sweden Collaborative Industrial Research & Development Programme. The Joint programme co-funded by the Indian Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Sweden’s Innovation Agency – Vinnova brings together the world class excellence of Sweden and India to address challenges in the area of Smart Cities and Clean Technologies and Digitalization / Internet of Things (IoT).
The Minister was also happy to note that Swedish Energy Agency earmarked an additional 25 million over 4 years for research and innovation collaboration with India.
Dr Jitendra Singh fondly remembered that in April 2018, during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Sweden, India agreed to deepen the collaboration through the Joint Declaration on Innovation Partnership for a Sustainable Future. He said, the partnership aims to increase the impact of bilateral cooperation in innovation, science and technology and it sets the framework for future cooperation to jointly tackle societal challenges including innovation-driven challenges on cross-sectoral issues with multi-stakeholder/agency participation from both countries.
Dr Jitendra Singh underlined that the partnership covers several areas, including smart cities, transportation and eMobility, energy, clean technologies, new materials, space, circular and bio-based economy, and health and life sciences. The India-Sweden Innovation Partnership bridges institutions, R&D intensive industries and creative entrepreneurs to address global challenges in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Dr Jitendra Singh shared his thoughts with the distinguished delegates and said, India has been progressing well in recent years in terms of its overall performance and outcome in science and technology and it has attained the 3rd position globally in terms of the number of publications. India’s growth rate of publications in SCI journals is nearly 14% against the global average of 4% and India has attained the 10th spot in the number of patents filed, the Minister added.
In conclusion, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the bilateral diplomatic relations have flourished on the back of our like-mindedness and commitment to fair trade and globalization and added that Innovation cooperation is the fastest growing element in the bilateral relationship between India and Sweden.
Dr.Jitendra Singh thanked Ms Ebba Busch, Swedish Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden and Minister for Business and Energy for her participation and also extended his sincere thanks to Indian Embassy in Sweden, the Swedish Government Agency for Innovation Systems (Vinnova), the Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education, guest speakers, industry partners and participants to make this even successful.
Dr. Fredrik Hörstedt, Head of Division for International Collaboration, Vinnova, Mr. Ulf Borbos, International Project Manager, SISP Swedish Incubators and Science Parks, Dr. Andreas Göthenberg, Executive Director of STINT, Dr. Jyoti Sharma, Scientist F, International Cooperation Division, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, and Dr. Sapna Poti, Director, Strategic Alliances Division, Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India participated in the India Sweden Innovation Day event.