‘Inclusive innovation need of the hour’

Pointing out that innovation alone should not be the goal, Dr RA Mashelkar, director general of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) said that Inclusive innovation was the need of the hour.

"A billion dollar India Inclusive Innovation fund has been announced by the government out of which Rs 500 crore has already been pledged as a starter intended to be operational from January 2013," said Mashelkar while delivering the RBR Kale Memorial lecture on the occasion of the 19th convocation of Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics.

Inclusive innovation leads to affordable access of quality goods and services creating livelihood opportunities for the excluded population on a long term sustainable basis. "The innovation can be technology led or it could be non-technological or both," said Mashelkar.

He said there are five characteristics of inclusive innovation, the first being affordable access. "If 2.6 billion people are living in less than $2 a day, then innovation should be aimed at extreme reduction in both the costs of production as well as the distribution," said Mashelkar.

The second characteristic is working on a sustainable basis and the third is related to quality of goods. The fourth characteristic is the access to excluded population and the fifth is significant outreach.

"If true inclusion has to happen then the benefits of inclusive innovation should reach a significant portion of population," said Mashelkar.

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