Cluster centres to promote innovation soon

New Delhi: The National Innovation Council (NInC) and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) today announced a partnership to jointly promote Cluster Innovation Centres as part of NInC's Industry and University Innovation Clusters initiative by joining forces with the CSIR-800 initiative of CSIR and Technopreneur Promotion Program (TePP) of DSIR.

The partnership has been jointly signed by the NInC Chairman and Adviser to the Prime Minister on Public Information Infrastructure and Innovations, Sam Pitroda and Prof. Samir Brahmachari, Chairman CSIR, who is also the Secretary to the Government of India, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), Ministry of Science and Technology.

Realizing that innovation is the engine for the growth and prosperity in the 21st century, the President of India has declared 2010 as the 'Decade of Innovation'. To take this agenda forward, NInC has been set up to prepare a Roadmap for Innovations 2010-2020 with a focus on inclusive growth.

Such a roadmap would outline interventions, policies, recommendations and methodologies to implement and foster innovation in the country especially in the 26 million MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises). CSIR, as a member of NInC, is a valuable partner in realizing this innovation agenda.

The NInC strategy focuses on five key parameters - Platform; Inclusion; Eco-system; Drivers and Discourse. The aim is to re-define innovations and to offer novel solutions that lead to inclusive growth and create innovation eco-systems connecting industry, universities, research institutes, professional associations, financial institutions and Government.

One of the key initiatives of NInC is to facilitate, promote, stimulate and strengthen innovation eco-systems across the country by creation of local Industry and University Innovation Clusters.

A cluster is a geographic grouping of institutions/firms in one industry which galvanizes and strengthens the competitive advantage of that industry. The innovation activities in the clusters identified by NInC would be galvanized around Cluster Innovation Centres (CICs).

CSIR with its 37 laboratories, 3 units, 39 extension centres and its over 4500 scientists will provide human capital and know-how input to CICs.

CSIR's involvement will also involve sharing their knowledge base and programs to boost the CICs, while CSIR will get new opportunities for enhanced MSME interaction to develop new research and innovations and fulfil the CSIR-800 mission.

The CICs would be based on a public private partnership (PPP) model and would act as hubs for connecting various local and national stakeholders.

These CICs would then facilitate and drive innovation by connecting cluster needs to ideas, knowledge, technologies, labs and people. Some of the CICs may be located in the CSIR-innovation complexes.

The eventual aim of the NInC and CSIR partnership would be to identify local clusters across industries to drive innovation through the CIC model.

However, in the first phase, pilot clusters would be identified to create model CICs and to refine how specific interventions stimulate innovation for enhancing growth and competitiveness. This would provide a blueprint to be replicated across Industry and Universities.
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