Updated on 29 November 2012
Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR): India’s 70-year-old innovation engine
The Bangalore declaration of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) director's meeting, held during the year 1998, concluded that, "India matters to us, and we want to matter to India, more." True to the statement, the organization today features among the world's top most publicly funded international R&D organizations.
Established in 1942 as an autonomous society and with 37 state-of-the-art institutes, India's CSIR holds the highest number of the US patents among all the publicly funded Indian R&D organization. Protecting intellectual property is a part of CSIR legacy. Its founder, Dr Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar was the first person to be granted an Indian patent during World War II. As of January 2012, CSIR holds 2,831 foreign patents and 997 US patents, which were granted from 2002-11. As on March 01, 2012, the number of patents that were force in India and abroad were 2,350 and 3,250 respectively.
It is interesting to know that while CSIR constitutes only three percent of the India's scientific manpower, yet it contributes to 10-to-11 percent of India's scientific outputs. CSIR performs science that leads in many frontiers. This is evident by its presence in leading journals of the world. CSIR's science has produced new concepts that have been translated into technologies for the benefit of India. The Prime Minister of India, Dr Manmohan Singh in his speech on the 70th foundation day of CSIR rightly called it as the flag bearer of the intellectual property movement in India.
"After India introduced economic reforms and joined the world trade organization (WTO), the CSIR quickly emerged as a single largest holder of US and European patents. The council, in recent years, has also become a world leader in specific domains of biotechnology and recombinant DNA products," said Dr Singh.