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India and Sweden launch an initiative to develop smart cities and clean technologies

India and Sweden recently launched a joint initiative that will work towards addressing a range of global challenges around smart cities, clean technologies, digitalisation, and IoT.

According to an official statement, India-Sweden Collaborative Industrial Research and Development Programme was announced on the occasion of the India-Sweden Innovation Partnership AI for All Summit, held earlier this month.

The programme is co-funded by the Indian Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Sweden’s Innovation Agency, Vinnova.

Vinnova is Sweden’s government agency for innovation, formally under the Ministry of Enterprise. Its mission is to contribute to sustainable growth by improving the conditions for innovation.

The programme will carry out full-scale research projects, focused on the development of new products, processes, and technologies.

Product-adaptation projects will also be funded under the programme. Vinnova will provide funding to Swedish side participants up to 2,500,000 Swedish Krona (approximately US $266,725) as grant. India will provide conditional grants of up to 50% with a limit of IN ₹1.5 crores (approximately US $214,462) per project to Indian project partners.

The statement said that India is the fastest rising research and innovation power in the world. The India-Sweden joint programme could play an effective role in taking the best out of Swedish and Indian innovators, making them work together, and develop a solution that will fit and benefit both sides.

The India-Sweden science and innovation partnerships have been strengthened over the last couple of years and high-level diplomatic visits have boosted interest in bilateral collaboration between the two countries.

Last year, during Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Sweden, India agreed to deepen the collaboration through the Joint Declaration on Innovation Partnership for a sustainable future. The partnership aims to increase the impact of bilateral cooperation in innovation, science, and technology. The areas for collaboration were smart cities and transportation (including e-mobility smart industry, digitalisation, start-ups, and IPR issues); new materials and advanced manufacturing; pace and aeronautics; circular and bio-based economy including biomaterials, and health and life sciences (including biomedical devices).

The Ambassador of Sweden said that India, with its strong talent pool and scale with over a billion people, will play an important role for developing solutions that can address challenges related to healthcare, transportation, and public safety.

The DST and Vinnova have created funding mechanisms through which companies may seek support for joint research and development projects.

DST, under the Government of India and Vinnova, under the Swedish governmental agency, have created funding mechanisms through which companies may seek support for joint research and development projects.

The programme aims to foster and support the development of collaborative projects that bring together companies, research organisations, academics, and other collaborators from both countries. The programme is technically and administratively managed by the Global Innovation & Technology Alliance (GITA) on behalf of DST and Vinnova.

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