The Indian economy has undergone a structural change over the last decade, with shares of agriculture, manufacturing and services in the gross domestic product (GDP) changing from 28.52%, 24.37% and 47.11% respectively in 1997-98 to 20.83%, 26.78% and 52.39% respectively in 2007-08. The share of merchandise trade in GDP increased from 20.28% to 38.61% over the same period and India’s share in world exports increased from 0.5% in 1990 to 1.1% in 2006.
Science and Technology has played an important role in bringing about this transformation in Indian economy, which is showing a shift from a predominantly agriculture based economy to manufacturing and services based economy and is now increasingly integrating with the world economy to become globally competitive, as demonstrated by its increasing share in world exports. Government S&T departments and agencies have undertaken or promoted research and development to provide innovative and contemporary technologies to industry and India’s recent growth has been driven by rapid expansion in export-oriented, skill intensive manufacturing and, especially, skill intensive services. India is increasingly becoming a top global innovation player in bio-technology, pharmaceuticals, automotive parts and assembly, information technology (IT), software and IT-enabled services (ITES) and has already become the world’s fourth-largest economy on purchasing power parity (PPP) basis.
Eleventh Five Year Plan approach to S&T has emphasized the following:
* Setting up a national-level mechanism for evolving policies and providing direction to basic research; * Enlarging the pool of scientific manpower, strengthening the S&T infrastructure and attracting & retaining young people to careers in science; * Implementing selected National Flagship Programmes which have direct bearing on the technological competitiveness of the country in a mission mode; *...