India has an opportunity to lead the fourth industrial revolution

Source– The post is based on the article “India has an opportunity to lead the fourth industrial revolution” published in the “mint” on 24th August 2023.

Syllabus: GS3- Indian economy

Relevance: Manufacturing sector

News– The article explains the issues related to fourth industrial revolution in India.

What are some facts about fourth industrial revolution?

Fourth industrial revolution is marked by the convergence of the physical, digital, and biological realms.

It will deeply transform our lifestyles, occupations, and social interactions. This is driven by emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, the internet of things, and biotechnology.

How India has potential to lead the fourth industrial revolution?

India possesses a well-established ecosystem of financial data through initiatives like the Unified Payments Interface and the Aadhaar platform.

New platforms such as the one focused on logistics are on the horizon. These platforms will  transform various sectors ranging from finance to logistics. It will establish a digital infrastructure capable of advancing the fourth industrial revolution.

India has a substantial youthful population and an education system equipped to produce the necessary skill sets.

Indian higher education institutions having young and talented minds. They are enthusiastic about making a global impact.

India is a fertile ground for entrepreneurship. It  has emerged as one of the world’s fastest-growing startup hubs.

These startups can be empowered to take the lead in the fourth industrial revolution by channeling resources into innovative technology.

What are challenges in achieving the full potential of fourth industriual revolution?

There is insufficient public and private investment in research endeavors. Presently, India’s allocation for research and development remains below 0.7% of its GDP.

It is even lower than countries like Egypt and Brazil. In contrast, nations such as the United States, China, Israel, Japan, and South Korea allocate between 2% and 5% of their GDP towards scientific research.

To tackle this issue, the government has recently introduced the Anusandhan National Research Foundation Bill, 2023, in the Parliament.

Way forward-

It is crucial to invest in higher education. Equipping universities with state-of-the-art technology and research facilities to foster innovation and entrepreneurship is required. Transitioning from a time-bound education system to continuous learning is imperative.

Facilitating ease of doing business is important. Entrepreneurs are the driving force behind the fourth industrial revolution. They require a favorable ecosystem.

The fourth industrial revolution isn’t solely about technology. It also revolves around people. It revolves around utilizing technology to enhance lives, generate opportunities, and construct a better future.

Deregulation and support for private higher education are other pivotal measures. India universities necessitate assistance to innovate, adapt to evolving industry demands, and equip Indian students with futuristic skills.

Universities must cultivate a culture of research and innovation, foster collaborations with industry, and embrace novel technologies and teaching methodologies.

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