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Dept of Biotechnology and WIPO Launch Fellowship to Promote MedTech Startups and Innovators

Written by : Jayati Dubey

October 16, 2023

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This initiative aims to address unmet health-related needs and challenges through scientific solutions. Additionally, it provides a platform for young innovators to tackle global health challenges, underscoring the importance of innovation in global health.

The Indian Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) have joined forces to launch the Global Health Innovation Fellowship. The program aims to promote medical technology startups and young innovators, addressing global health challenges.

Union Minister for Science and Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh, presided over the launch of the Global Health Innovation Fellowship.

Under the partnership, the DBT Bio-design centres at IIT Delhi, AIIMS in New Delhi, IIT Bombay, and Hinduja and Nanavati Hospital in Mumbai will host the fellowship.

The initiative seeks to find scientific solutions to unmet health-related needs and challenges while promoting intellectual property and public health. It also aims to enhance institutional collaboration and provide a platform for young innovators to tackle global health challenges.

During the launch, Dr Jitendra Singh highlighted the importance of the initiative matching with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision to find innovative solutions. He emphasised that the program would not only strengthen institutional collaboration but also provide opportunities for young innovators to develop impactful solutions.

The collaboration between DBT and WIPO has already received 157 applications from young professionals worldwide, including low- and middle-income countries. As part of the initiative, WIPO has pledged to support four fellows to participate in the DBT Bio-design Program, further fostering collaboration between the two organisations.

Dr Singh praised the efforts of DBT and WIPO and said, "This is a flagship partnership and must be strengthened to enable India attain global leadership in innovation and startup promotion".

He also highlighted the significant growth of the bioeconomy in India, which is projected to contribute effectively to Prime Minister Modi's vision of a five trillion-dollar economy.

Currently, India has 4,000 biotech startups, with expectations to reach 10,000 by 2025. The sector's exponential growth rate can potentially support more than 10 million jobs in 2025.

Daren Tang, director-general of WIPO, expressed WIPO's commitment to assisting India in becoming a Global Space Technology Hub and a role model of South-South cooperation. Tang emphasised the importance of leveraging intellectual property, innovation, and medical technology to address local health challenges through global partnerships.

The partnership between DBT and WIPO is expected to co-develop national, regional, and global institutional capacities for innovators to tackle global health challenges collaboratively.

The launch of the Global Health Innovation Fellowship by DBT and WIPO aims to address global health challenges, foster institutional collaboration, and provide a platform for young professionals to develop impactful solutions. With the support of WIPO, India's bioeconomy is set to reach new heights, contributing to the country's economic growth and job creation.


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