A new government body will funnel research grants based on whether they are of 'national importance'


  • In the union budget for 2019-20, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a National Research Foundation (NRF).
  • The Indian government will fund, coordinate and promote research in the country, under the initiative.
  • The policy will introduce major changes in school and higher education.
In the union budget for 2019-20, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a National Research Foundation which will fund, coordinate and promote research in the country. But with a condition – the government will identify the trust areas of ‘national importance’ for the allocation of the funds.

The minister said that the new policy will introduce major changes in the school and higher education and boost research and innovation.

To accelerate the growth of research studies in the country, the government will now assimilate grants given by independent ministries and integrate the funds to the National Research Foundation (NRF).

India’s premier research institutes include Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institute of Science Education & Research(IISER) among others.

According to the QS World Rankings 2020, IISc was ranked second in the university rankings, globally, for its research facilities. The institute has nearly 100,000 citations in research papers over a period of five years.

“The overarching goal of NRF will be to enable a culture of research to permeate through our universities. In particular, NRF will explicitly aim to remove the current obstacles in creating a global quality research ecosystem in the country, Hindustan Times reported citing experts.

Eyeing global expansion, Sitharaman also announced a ‘Study in India’ programme which will be focussed to bring foreign students to study in India’s higher institutions. This the Minister believes will further promote a greater Indian economy.
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