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EDUCATION

Govt must establish more incubators for start-up-researcher alignment
Thursday, 08 March, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Our Bureau, Bengaluru
It is time government institutions took the lead in establishing more incubation centres to enable researchers to scale up their innovative ideas, facilitating alignment with start-ups in order to bring in new innovations, which would help in solving a number of problems faced by the society.

This was stated by G Padmanabhan, former director, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, at the inauguration of BioNest, a bio-incubator, which took place at the University of Hyderabad’s School of Life Sciences.

“Incubators are required in all government institutions for start-ups to commence their work. I have gone through 5,000 research proposals, and out of those, 700 are operational in 500 industries. They have developed 100 products, out of which 50 have been commercialised,” he added.

Stating that there was immense scope for research, Padmanabhan called on government institutions having over 1,000 laboratories across the country to establish more such incubator facilities that can have start-ups capable of aligning with the research being undertaken within their own institutions.

Stressing on encouraging more women entrepreneurs, he added that women researchers should take up start-ups and work towards entrepreneurship.

BioNEST is spread over an area of 20,000sq ft in the built-up area. It is perhaps the largest of its kind in India. This facility is supported by the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), a unit of the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology.

E Premkumar Reddy, director, experimental cancer therapeutics, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, is associated with the facility in the capacity of a mentor, stating that it will be one of the best in the country.

Appa Rao Podile, vice-chancellor, University of Hyderabad, said that establishing this kind of a facility was like a dream come true for the varsity’s School of Life Sciences.

P Reddanna, faculty, Department of Plant Sciences, and principal investigator, BioNest, said, “This new facility will accommodate nearly 30 start-ups and provide 16 benches for research.”

At present, the University of Hyderabad has 350 Ph.D scholars and faculty members in the School of Life Sciences, who can help in collaborations and consultations with the start-ups and enable the innovate ideas take up their commercial shape.
 
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