Science and Technology: Policy and Capacity Building
India’s relatively poor performance in S&T research is largely due to the policy and institutional structures in India. Despite the large gap in India’s S&T performance and the huge scope for policy improvement, there are almost non-existent efforts in S&T policy advocacy. There is a wide-open space in pursuing matters of S&T with the government, help them formulate policy based on deep understanding of the gaps in the Indian system and the best practices across the world. We also require capacity building in S&T. There are various actors in the S&T ecosystem – grant-making agencies, research institutions, universities, industry, faculty, PhD students, and support systems. We need to support them, help them incorporate best practices, get connected among themselves and connect to the society. Private individuals and organizations can play a catalytic role here. Read more
Artificial Intelligence in India: Opportunities and Challenges
Is AI an opportunity for India? Are Indian companies using AI? What is automation doing to the jobs? Does India measure up to USA and China in AI? What are our challenges? What about AI startups? What can we do to lead in AI? This policy notes provides a wholesome picture of AI in India today and a way to the future. Read more
Improving S&T ecosystem in India: Short term measures
The Indian government has shown intent towards solving some of the issues in the science and technology ecosystem through measures such as the Institutes of Eminence and PM Research Fellowship. Even though the S&T ecosytem needs structural changes, some of these intiatives are well-intentioned. This policy note looks at how to improving these schemes and make them more holistic. Read more
Using AI for government initiatives
Multiple governments today wish to use AI to make their processes more efficient. This could be a game changer specifically for developing economies which suffer greatly from problems of lack of capacity, infrastructure and corruption. Easier said than done, governments really struggle on how to find the right projects where AI could be super effective, how to build solutions and finally implement it. This is a short policy note on doing this in an efficient manner. It may take 5-7 years to implement these programs, but the methodology with yield real long term benefit. The policy note is written in context of India, but is applicable to other countries as well. Read more.
Artificial Intelligence: India Next?
Artificial is transforming science, engineering and businesses. India’s great opportunity in AI is beseeched by greater challenges. Earlier this year, the Finance Minister said, “Technologies such as machine learning, artificial intelligence and others are the technologies of the future and NITI Aayog will establish a national programme to conduct research and development in these areas.” In this white paper, I lay out a plan to accomplish it in the next five years. It requires three components: a. Leading AI research globally, b. Large-scale training in AI and c. Commercialization of AI research. I use the principles laid out in the last chapter of the book “India Next?” to design this strategy. India can achieve this with an annual outlay of just Rs. 600 crore ($100 million a year)! Read more.
Where does India stand as machines become intelligent
Machine learning is the science of learning to do tasks by observing examples. It is transforming the world by enabling machines do all sorts of ‘intelligent’ tasks such as understanding images, human speech, predicting preferences, diseases and many others. With tremendous amount of data, interconnectedness, sophisticated algorithms and huge processing power in small devices, machines do things which were beyond their reach until recently. Read more
Science and Technology: The opportunity and Challenges
Today is the most opportune time for India to revolutionize its science and technology ecosystem. If India doesn’t build its research and innovation ecosystem now, it risks its economic growth and social development. We are frittering away our large opportunity in S&T. We have many challenges. Read more to learn about the opportunities and challenges for S&T in India.
It will be winner takes all, but with many winners
Very large companies with their products being used across the world are emerging around us. The market has become efficient due to the internet – if you have a killer product or service, it can sell across the world on the internet providing high returns on innovation. This makes the company super rich and the entrepreneur gets a high upside for the innovation. However, this also displaces the local players … Read more
The first data science camp for kids!
We see data and data science exploding around us – more and more businesses (and even governments) make decisions based on data, rather than qualitative analysis or expert views. This is also because businesses, and our lives, have turned digital and data is easily accessible than ever before. Our way of thinking about things has turned statistical- the answer to a question is not a yes or a no anymore, but an effect size with a confidence interval, or stated simply, the likelihood (chance) of the answer being yes is some percent value. If you did not get either of these, take a data science course now! Read more