Harmonising science and society

The Centre for Society and Policy (CSP) is a policy research centre based at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India. Established in November 2018, as an interdisciplinary centre for science and technology policy, the centre explores interactions between science, technology, society, and development. The Indian Institute of Science has been at the forefront of cutting-edge research in the various disciplines of science and technology. With the establishment of a policy centre, the institute extends its impact of S&T research by looking at the multitude interrelationships between S&T research and policy.

The CSP today addresses several policy agendas including sustainable futures, intellectual property rights, genetic engineering and health, smart cities, livelihood and water futures, informal economic systems, data security, and data economics. The centre is committed to policy engagement and impacting policy at all stages of S&T research.

“Science in the 21st century is about expanding the social compact, that is, honouring the implicit agreement between science and society to work together for sustainability, and mutual benefit.”
Maam5
Prof. Anjula Gurtoo
Chairperson, Centre for Society and Policy

Intellectual Property Models for Accelerating Sustainability Transitions

An Analysis of Sustainable Intellectual Property Models
Using clean energy for boosting circular economy

Policy Research in Science and Technology

Addressing policy agendas for cutting edge research
Sustainable futures, IPR, emerging technologies, urban development, entrepreneurship and more

The Akshay Patra Research
Lab

Children food security policy development and advocacy
Food security, community participation, elimination of malnutrition, and more

Feature articles on COVID-19

A series of publications on a range of policy issues in the wake of Covid19 pandemic:

Realigning Sustainability in the Post-pandemic World

by Anjula Gurtoo and Rahul Patil

As the Covid19 pandemic spreads into more regions, the national priorities are moving towards supporting the stretched health systems, hard-hit small business owners and the labor force working in various sectors. National governments are working overtime to ensure the availability of basics like food, water and sanitation to their population. Redistributive actions, hence, have become the focus. With the general belief that the pandemic will continue for some time, though hopefully in a minor capacity, what will sustainability look like in the post Covid19 world?

[Please find the full text here]

Effective public health data sharing in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

by Anjula Gurtoo and Inder S Gopal

The unprecedented crisis caused by COVID-19 has triggered several discussions on the long term global public health uncertainties. One of the critical resources leading the solution to these issues is Data. Experts from around the world are highlighting the criticality of publicly and privately owned health information that can be freely used, without unnecessary national or international legal restrictions on access or usage. The COVID-19 crisis has brought forth the practical benefits of sharing accurate and trusted public health and pandemic related data.

[Please find the full text here]

Emerging preferences in intellectual property – Lessons from the COVID-19 crisis

by Anjula Gurtoo and Rahul Patil

The coronavirus pandemic has spurred some unusual initiatives in the intellectual property (IP) domain. The open COVID pledge by several companies and universities in order to galvanize the development of treatment and cures for COVID-19, ensures everyone has access to the technology needed to mass-produce masks, ventilators, and testing kits. Numerous recent legislative developments around the world are laying the foundation for compulsory licensing of COVID-19 related patents. The initiatives aim to improve accessibility to innovations that could play a strong part in dealing with a critical global issue. However, these global cooperation-based initiatives open the IP domain to several critical discussions.

[Please find the full text here]

Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Change the IP Domain for the Better?

by Anjula Gurtoo and Rahul Patil

Several companies and universities have signed the ‘open COVID pledge‘ to encourage development of treatments and cures for COVID-19. The pledge assures researchers of access to the technology needed to mass-produce masks, ventilators and testing kits. The development of COVID-19 diagnostic kits only a few weeks after the outbreak began is an example of this global cooperation. We have also seen international cooperation in sharing medicines. Governments have also actively stepped into the patent system with discussions of compulsory licensing and creating public patent pools.

[Published by The Wire; full text here]

Resolving The COVID-19 Induced Migrant Crisis

by Anjula Gurtoo

The nationwide lockdown in India from 21 March 2020 has disproportionately impacted nearly 40 million daily waging, internal migrants. Loss of livelihood was the direct impact of the lockdown, indirectly impacting their food, health and life security. With minimal or no savings, most of them were unable to pay rent, buy food, and buy medical supplies for the ill and the elderly.

[Please find the full text here]

Criticality of Midday Meals for School Children Post COVID-19

by Deepika Swami and Anjula Gurtoo

As of June 12, 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in approximately 7.27 million cases and 413,000 deaths globally. In response to the severe outbreak of COVID-19, 107 countries on March 12, 2020, temporarily closed their educational institutions affecting around 70% of the global student population. So far, more than 190 countries have implemented national school closure affecting 1.57 billion children, i.e., approximately 90% of the global student population.

[Please find the full text here]

S&T Policy Events of Interest

Panel Discussion on The Future and Promise of Artificial Intelligence

28th February 2020 | Venue: CSP Seminar Hall, Bangalore

This panel discussion will explore strategic approaches to be adopted by India for accelerated diffusion of artificial intelligence considering its potential to transform economies. It will further focus on NITI Aayog’s three-pronged approach of national strategy on artificial intelligence. More particularly, it will examine important issues like ethics, bias and privacy issues relating to AI across sectors like agriculture, health and education.

Contact CSP Office [More Details]

Panel Discussion on Data Economics and Policy

14th February 2020 | Venue: Faculty Hall Main Building, IISc Bangalore | Time: 3:30 to 5:30 pm

This panel discussion will explore the economic, policy, legal, regulatory, standardization issues involved in using public data to generate public good. The data under consideration includes IOT data from smart city sensors, video data from surveillance cameras, legal and property records, data from cellular providers and similar. The Economist has (somewhat optimistically) estimated that this data will generate 1.7T$ of economic value by 2025. This panel discussion will examine the issues that are pertinent to making this claim a reality.

Contact CSP Office [More Details]

Workshop on Communicating Research to Non-experts

18th January 2020 | Venue: CSP Seminar Hall, Bangalore

The need to acquire the skills to communicate one’s research to non-experts is being increasingly
recognized by all stakeholders involved in research and development – funding agencies, journals,
academic universities, as well as industries. Learning these skills is absolutely crucial today due to
three recent changes in the professional landscape of graduate students.

Registration open for highly motivated doctoral researchers from all disciplines

Contact CSP Office [More Details]

Workshop on Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

26th to 27th July 2019 | Venue: CSP Seminar Hall, Bangalore

The workshop will equip academic institutions to set up their own incubation centre and IP Cell in the area of science and technology.

Registration open for institutions and academicians

Contact CSP Office [More Details]

Some Articles of Interest

Entrepreneurship should begin in school. By Professor Aravind Chinchure. The Hindu, Education Plus, February 10, 2020. Link

How do science and policy intersect? Harvard professor explains. Prof Jasanoff was interviewed by Haripriya of The News Minute, January 22, 2020. Link

Understanding the Science Policy Ecosystem in India. By B. Chagun Basha. The Wire, November 10, 2019. Link

How a Love for Animals Spurred a Change in Career: Featuring Mr KA Ponnanna. By Kavitha Harish. The Connect, IISc, March 28, 2019. Link

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