Adding heft to diplomacy with some help from science (GS-2 international relations,gs-3, SCIENCE AND TECH the hindu editorial)

The pandemic gives India a unique space to mainstream science and technology in its domestic and foreign policies

  • ‘Vaccine Maitri’ campaign
    • provisioning COVID-19 vaccines to countries to leverage its science and technological advantages in its foreign policy objectives. 
  • Setting the template
    •  Nehru’s awareness about the constructive and destructive power of science made the country’s development in Science and tech.
  • Assertion of interests
    • India assisting its partners from the Global South in key areas of science and technology such as health across Asia and Africa.=
    •  Establishment of  the Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to P.M. in November 1999 shows india’s keenness in science
    • Thaw in ties between India and the United States given the rise of an aggressive China and other consequential challenges to the international system gave india a conducive atmosphere in science and tech such as nuclear and space technology .
    • India signes strategic partnerships bearing substantial science and technology components with advanced economies such as the United Kingdom, Japan, Israel, Germany, the European Union, Singapore, .
    • Science and Technology Policy 2003 and Science, Technology and Innovation Policy 2013 
      • clearly related international science and technology cooperation with national interest. 
    • four Development Partnership Administrations under its Ministry of External Affairs 
    • The Ministry of External Affairs has seen a restructuring 
      • Cyber Diplomacy Division
      •  an E-Governance & Information Technology Division 
      • a New Emerging & Strategic Technologies Division to manage science and technology issues in the nation’s diplomatic matrix.

The COVID-19 response

  • sending medicines such as hydroxychloroquine and paracetamol to over 150 countries
  • Serum Institute of India competently partnered with the U.K.’s  oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine project
  • Bharat Biotech gave rise to indigenous vaccines in the shape of Covaxin.
  • India’s response came at a time where the developed world was pre-occupied in trying to address its own domestic issues and China’s health diplomacy 

Way Forward

  • Aatmanirbhar Bharat initiative attempts to secure maximum self-reliance through capacity building and creating an environment 
  • India’s financial apportionment to science and technology related research must rise to enable the country’s own rise
  • States must participate in S&T,R&D
  • universities and private sector in research and development efforts.
  • India’s young scientists and technologists to be made more aware of the country’s foreign policy objectives
  • enable all stakeholders in the policy establishment to learn more about science and technology to bridge the intellectual divide.

Swarn Singh

Plutus IAS Current Affair Team Member

Leave a Reply