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Innovation from within: The policy perspective Policy challenges in fostering Science, Technology and Innovation for economic growth Innovation and Technology.

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Presentation on theme: "Innovation from within: The policy perspective Policy challenges in fostering Science, Technology and Innovation for economic growth Innovation and Technology."— Presentation transcript:

1 Innovation from within: The policy perspective Policy challenges in fostering Science, Technology and Innovation for economic growth Innovation and Technology Day, 24 April 2012, Doha, Qatar Tissa Vitarana Senior Minister for Scientific Affairs, Sri Lanka

2 Focus … 1.Technology and innovation in achieving faster economic growth – considerations for countries in the South 2.What have been the main policy and implementation challenges for Sri Lanka? 3.What have we learnt? What are the implications for policy making? How Sri Lanka is facing the challenges 4.Policy considerations at a global level

3 Technology and innovation for faster economic growth in the South Shift from a commodity based to a knowledge based economy Wealth creation through technology and innovation – Exploitation of IP – Value addition; More through high tech value addition Build capacity for multi-faceted, multi phased processes involved in R&D/innovation Technology Up scaling to commercial production Market – Building the indigenous capacity for innovation and high end technologies Requirement of specialized human resources / infrastructure /a conducive environment for innovation to take place – Reorient and coordinate the National Research and Innovation System to optimize investment in STI

4 Main policy and implementation challenges for Sri Lanka? Poor investment in STI and R&D at national level (<0.2% of the GDP) National Research and Innovation System ; Scattered (over 10 line ministries), disjointed, poorly resourced; lacks mechanisms to utilize research output; lacks a framework at national level for coordination of STI huge gaps in providing technological solutions to national issues Inadequate human resources and skills for STI based activities – Brain Drain/ Skill shortages and gaps/ Human resource shortcomings Outdated, not well maintained STI and R&D infrastructure Poor R&D / innovation / techno-entrepreneurship culture in State / industry

5 R&D and wealth creation in Sri Lanka Poor R&D commercialization culture Ad-hoc R&D projects instead of focused programmes Low level of industry oriented R&D Poor investment on R&D by local industries Low Investment in R&D A vicious cycle Poor visibility for R&D output Inadequate human resources for R&D Outdated R&D infrastructure No significant contribution of R&D by State sector for wealth creation

6 Sri Lankan Endeavours … The National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) The National Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation

7 Backdrop and Rationale for the NNI in Sri Lanka Low (<2) % of high tech manufactured exports from Sri Lanka – indicating poor high end innovation culture in the country R&D and industry in any of the high end technologies has not been developed to a satisfactory level in Sri Lanka Limited STI capacity Poor patenting and research commercialization culture (1-2 patents registered at USPTO per year)

8 Technological revolutions (waves) - the basis for economic development … Industrial Revolution (late 18th and early 19th centuries) Electronics Revolution (1960's) ICT Revolution (1980s) Biotech Revolution (1990s) Nanotech (In 21 st Century) Robert Solow – 1987 Nobel prize for Economics - proving that US economic development due to technological advances through R+D and innovation. That is how investment help.

9 We attempted to... Maximize the utilization of our limited STI resources by converging them to one initiative, so that it will: – Contribute to rapid take off of the national economy (in close partnership with industry) – Develop a high end technology (nanotechnology) that cuts across all other technologies; so that other technologies will also develop in parallel – Be a catalyst to change the existing National Research and Innovation system (and the mind set) in Sri Lanka Create (in 2008) a public private partnership envisioned and backed by the state sector and driven by the private sector (through an incorporated company – Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology (SLINTEC Pvt. Ltd) – with the necessary autonomy and flexibility

10 NNI as the catalyst for change … SLINTEC - potential to change the National Research and Innovation System of Sri Lanka; more: – Socially accountable Promote equitable, inclusive technology sustainable development – Commercially oriented Creating a platform for techno-entrepreneurship and a patenting culture; revenue generated now equals the total equity contributed by the State and the private sector on a 50:50 basis – Conscious of Quality; Safety ; Ethical issues – Nationally and internationally visible – Strengthened human, physical and operational capabilities (mechanisms to overcome bureaucratic impediments and enhance brain gain, GLP)

11 Science, Technology and Innovation strategy for Sri Lanka Vision Sri Lanka to be a leader in knowledge creation and innovation in Asia whilst rapidly harnessing that knowledge for the prosperity of our people

12 To establish a world class National Research and Innovation eco-system to generate strategic and sustainable technologies and innovations to win the economic war by: – Focusing on areas of core competencies and resource linked opportunities; – Preparing our people for a knowledge society through improved scientific literacy ; and – Upholding sustainable principles in all spheres of STI activity. Its Mission …

13 Sustainability principles Scientifically literate Society Rapid Economic Development Advanced Technology Initiative Techno- entrepreneur- ship initiative Directed R&D World class National Research and Innovation Eco-System

14 Policy considerations at a global level Science, Technology and Innovation should be a priority item in the development agenda for less industrialized countries of international funding/ donor agencies/ countries Harmonization of regulations, standards and best practices at global level Sharing of resources: cooperate in a competitive milieu International effort to convert brain drain to a brain circulation


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