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Carnegie India's Global Technology Summit to explore technology diplomacy

Neha Jain
7th Dec 2017
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The spirit of collective wisdom is known to nurture innovation. Be it academia, startups, companies, policy-makers, regulators or the world at large, the collective has often brought out the best of all efforts.

Carnegie India, an Indian think tank with a global network, will organise a Global Technology Summit in Bengaluru on December 7-8, 2017 with a focus on “new directions in technology policy, such as tech-diplomacy, data protection, and building an innovation ecosystem, as well as fields like digital finance, e-mobility, robotics, and smart cities, where massive technological transformation is likely in the coming years.”

Carnegie India is the sixth international centre of Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and is based in New Delhi. It has been set up to produce public policy research about critical national, regional, and global issues.

Talking about the rationale behind Carnegie India’s Global Technology Summit, C. Raja Mohan, Director, Carnegie India said, “When Carnegie India was launched two years ago, we were quite conscious of two issues. That developing effective policies to cope with the unfolding technological transformation is a key national challenge, and that there was insufficient research on the issues involved. As we began to focus on technology policy research, we found there is not enough communication between the policymakers in Delhi and the community of technology entrepreneurs in Bengaluru and the world.”

He added, “We conceived the Global Technology Summit as a vehicle to facilitate this communication and debate between these different groups. We were greatly encouraged by the response last year, and are hoping to build on it this year. We are quite confident that the GTS will emerge as the premier Indian forum engaging with a range of technology and policy challenges that confront us. These include, regulation versus promotion, individual rights versus collective interests, and balancing the internal and external imperatives.”  

C Raja Mohan

The center’s research focus includes the political economy of reform in India, foreign and security policy, and the role of innovation and technology in India’s internal transformation and international relations. For the 2017 summit, the opening panel will be on Technology Diplomacy: Prospects for India and Japan, with S. Jaishankar, foreign secretary of India, Kenji Hiramatsu, ambassador of Japan to India and C. Raja Mohan, director of Carnegie India as panelists.

Carnegie India has partnered with Japan for this year's summit, and speaking about this, R K Misra, non-resident scholar at Carnegie India said, “Technology by its nature transcends national boundaries. Technology is a great equaliser as well as capable of creating socioeconomic disparities. Technology is also a vital tool of diplomacy and international relations. Japan and India are strategic partners economically and geopolitically. Technology is playing a critical role in this partnership, be it the bullet train project or strategic cooperation between Indian and Japanese research and academic institutions.”

Further, specific areas of technological cooperation like biotechnology, space technology, and defence technology, hold great potential for the future, he added. 

In attendance at the 2017 Global Technology Summit will be business leaders, policy makers, startups, and investors, who will engage with, and bring out innovative ideas and partnerships.

Ananth Padmanabhan, fellow at Carnegie India said, “GTS has already emerged as a successful platform for innovators and policymakers to engage with each other. Several important policy ideas brought forth last year, including regulatory sandboxes for financial technology and light-touch regulations for drones, are slowly finding their presence in new policy regulations and guidelines.”

“Additionally, the Summit plays a pivotal role in directing Carnegie India’s Technology Forum Initiative towards important research areas where technology and policy intersect. A fine example is the institution’s role in facilitating the government of Karnataka’s electric vehicles policy, the first such regulation in India, that built upon Carnegie India’s expertise in convening stakeholders across the policy spectrum,” he added.

The summit will bring these and other insights, bringing together leading entrepreneurs, technologists, policy makers, and academicians from around the world.

Find details of the agenda here.

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