India may be seen as a global hub for innovation, but multinational corporations have filed more patents in India over the past decade than all of India’s public and private institutions.
Among the top 50 applicants for patents in India, 44 were foreign firms. Only six were Indian — among these, three were public institutions, one was a public corporation, and just two were private Indian firms, both in the pharmaceutical industry.
The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and the defence ministry were the two Indian public agencies with the highest number of patents in India, followed by the Steel Authority of India. The two private companies in the top 50 patent applicants are Ranbaxy and Dr Reddy’s Laboratories.
Overall, India appears better at producing basic knowledge than commercialising knowledge. But India has low research and development costs — primarily because of low pay to scientists and engineers, the main cost component of research spending according to the report.
Although termed as the knowledge hub providing valuable human resource to the world, when it comes to Research and Development (R&D) at the domestic level, India lags behind developing countries like China, Brazil and for that matter even with Republic of Korea and Mexico.