The Scientific Indian

Former NASSCOM president Kiran Karnik writes in Economic Times:

…cost-efficient technologies that fit the socio-cultural milieu are yet awaited.

These examples point to a pressing need and an exciting challenge, representing a unique three dimensional convergence of technological capability, economic opportunity and societal need. The time is now ripe for this convergence: the growth of India’s technology base has resulted in far greater capability to meet the needs. At the same time, economic growth — though skewed and iniquitous — has created an economically attractive market in rural India. There is, however, yet a gap in the third dimension. Understanding societal need from a socio-cultural standpoint is not easy, especially as the necessity for doing so is generally not appreciated.

Many decades ago, India’s vibrant programme of applications of space technology had a large team of social scientists, dedicated to understanding the true needs of rural India and acting as a bridge between villagers and technologists. Today, we need an equivalent effort to devise user-friendly technology solutions for the problems of rural India. This will link booming, bits-and-bytes India with suffering, stagnating Bharat, so that the knowledge-driven sector serves as an engine of growth that pulls along the rural economy. This could be the next big thing for techno-entrepreneurs and enterprising corporates.


  1. #1 Sanjana
    March 31, 2008

    Nice informative article. It will be great if you can also publish this piece of information in as I am a member of SiliconIndia I am sure that this information will be useful for most of the members.

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