Skip to main content

Ahmedabad doesn't figure among top 100 world innovative clusters, as India stabilises at 40th in competitiveness index

Counterview Desk
India may have jumped in the World Economic Forum's (WEF's) global competitiveness index (GCI), released this week, from 71st position in 2014-15 to 39th in 2016-17, "stabilising" on 40th position in 2017-18. However, if the report's findings are any guide, none of Gujarat cities, including the "model" city Ahmedabad, figure in 100 top urban clusters identified as "centres of innovation."
The report, titled "The Global Competitiveness Index 2017-2018", even as recognising the "growing importance of China and India as centres of innovation", says, the among geographical clusters which generate the most patents Shenzen–Hong Kong comes 8th in the list of 100 cities, the 2nd place is shared in between Tokyo-Yokohama and San Jose–San Francisco, and Beijing comes in 7th.
Coming to India, the report states, three Indian locations appear in the top 100 of the cluster study: Bengaluru at 43rd (with patent activity focused on computer technology), Mumbai at 95th, and Pune at 96th (both registering among the most patents in organic fine chemistry)."
It notes, India's "level of technological readiness of individuals and firms" in India, as those of China, remains "relatively low, suggesting that the benefits of these innovative activities are not widely shared", adding, "Societal gains from innovation breakthroughs do not happen automatically: they need complementary efforts to ensure that more people and firms have the means to access and use new technologies."
Not without reason, even as ranking India 40th among 137 countries in WCI, the report finds that as far as technological readiness is concerned, the country ranks a poor 107th. Ranking 3rd in market size, thanks to the country's population size and purchasing power of a rising middle class, the report ranks India 91st in health and primary education, 80th in macroeconomic environment, 75th in higher education and training, and so on.
Based on an executive opinion survey of 201 persons, the ranking combines it with an analysis of 12 pillars -- institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic environment, health and primary education, higher education and training, goods market efficiency, labor market efficiency, financial market development, technological readiness, market size, business sophistication, and innovation.
While India ranks much better than two of the peer BRICS countries, Brazil (80th) and South Africa (61st), two others rank better than India -- China 27th and Russia 38th. Among the neighbours India is far ahead of Pakistan, which ranks 115th, Bangladesh 99th and Sri Lanka 85th.
In its executive opinion survey, the report has found that "the private sector still considers corruption to be the most problematic factor for doing business in India". In fact, on a scale of 10, the most important factor hindering global competition is found to be corruption, giving it a weightage of 9.2, followed by access to finance 8.5, tax rates 7.9, and so on.
The report notes, "Asian economies were less exposed to the global financial crisis, but they are facing new problems of their own. Amid a private-sector credit boom in India, the proportion of loans classed as non-performing went from 4 percent to 9 percent in two years."
Nevertheless, taking a positive view of India, the report states, "India (40th) stabilizes this year after its big leap forward of the previous two years. The score improves across most pillars of competitiveness, particularly infrastructure (66th, up two), higher education and training (75th, up six), and technological readiness (107th, up three), reflecting recent public investments in these areas."

Comments

TRENDING

It's now official: Developed Gujarat's regular, casual workers earn less than 19 top states

By Rajiv Shah
Though not as low as state chief minister Vijay Rupani claims it to be (0.9%), Gujarat’s unemployment rate, at least as reflected in a recent report released by the Government of India, is 4.8%, lower than the national average, 6%. Yet, ironically, the same report, released soon after the Lok Sabha polls came to an end in May 2019, brings to light an even grimmer reality: Lower wages in "model" and "developed" Gujarat compared to virtually the whole of India, including the so-called Bimaru states.

Telangana govt proposes to give unfettered powers to forest officials, 'help' corporates

By Dr Palla Trinadha Rao*
The Telangana Government is contemplating to replace the Telangana Forest Act 1967 with a new law - the Telangana Forest Act (TFA) 2019, trampling the rights of adivasis ensured under the Scheduled Tribes and other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 (FRA Act 2006) and Panchayats Extension to Schedule Area (PESA) Act 1996 both of which are central acts.

RSS, Hindu Mahasabha were 'subservient' to British masters: Nagpur varsity VC told

Counterview Desk
Well-known political scientist Shamsul Islam, associate professor (retired), University of Delhi, in an open letter to the vice-chancellor of the Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, Dr Siddharthavinayaka P Kane, has taken strong exception to the varsity decision to include RSS’ “role” in nation building in the syllabus of the BA (history) course, citing instances to say that the RSS ever since its birth in 1925 with its Hindutva allies like Hindu Mahasabha led by VD Savarkar worked overtime to “betray the glorious anti-colonial freedom struggle”.

British companies export 'deadly' asbestos to India, other countries from offshore offices

By Rajiv Shah
“The Sunday Times”, which forms part of the powerful British daily, “The Times”, has raised the alarm that though the “deadly” asbestos is banned in Britain, companies registered in United Kingdom, and operating from other countries, “are involved in shipping it to developing nations”, especially India. India, Brazil, Russia and China account for almost 80% of the asbestos consumed globally every year, it adds.

Amaravati: World Bank refusing to share public grievances on Land Pooling Scheme

By Our Representative
A new report, prepared by the advocacy group Centre for Financial Accountability (CFA), New Delhi, has taken strong exception to the World Bank refusing to share its independent assessment of the Land Pooling Scheme (LPS), floated by the Andhra Pradesh government in order to build the new capital.

Beijing-based infrastructure bank 'funding' India's environmentally risky projects

By Our Representative
A new civil society note has questioned the operations of the Beijing-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a multilateral development bank that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region, seeking to fund projects in India through the Government of India’s National Infrastructure Investment Fund (NIIF), calling it “a risky venture”.

Include all workers exposed to silica dust in anti-TB programme: Govt of India told

Counterview Desk
In a letter, sponsored by well-known civil rights organization, Occupational & Environmental Health Network of India and signed by more than 60 professionals and activists*, Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, has been told that Indian policy makers shouldn't just acknowledge higher TB risk to mine and stone crusher workers, but also “other silica-exposed workers”.

Universal healthcare? India lacks provisions to 'fight' non-communicable diseases

By Moin Qazi*
Universal health coverage (UHC) -- ensuring that all people receive proper and adequate health care without suffering financial hardship -- is an integral part of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. It enables countries to make the most of their strongest asset: human capital.

Polygamy in India "down" in 45 yrs: Muslims' from 5.7 to 2.55%, Hindus' 5.8 to 1.77%, "common" in SCs, STs

By Rajiv Shah
Amidst All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) justifying polygamy, saying it “meets social and moral needs and the provision for it stems from concern and sympathy for women”, facts suggest the the practice is down from 5.7 per cent of Muslim families in 1961 to 2.55 per cent in 2006.

TISS Hyderabad: Burden of funds cut falls on students from 'marginalized' sections

Counterview Desk
Top activists associated with the National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), a civil society network, including Medha Patkar, Aruna Roy, Nikhil Dey, Shankar Singh, Dr Binayak Sen, and Prafulla Samantara, has protested against the decision of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) administration for “sine die” closure of TISS, Hyderabad Campus, even as “denying” hostel access to Dalit and Adivasi students.