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India needs to follow the path of frugal innovation

In driving forward the vision of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to position India as global leader in the development of telecom technologies and standards, Telecommunication Engineering Centre (TEC), in collaboration with C-DoT and TSDSI, successfully conducted the “National Workshop on Enhancing Indian Participation in Telecom Global Standards Bodies” on 7th July 2023 at the C-DoT Campus here today.

Secretary (Telecom) Shri K Rajaraman launched the Standards Coordination Portal, developed by Telecommunication Engineering Centre (TEC). The portal by bringing together experts from diverse sectors including industry, academia, research institutes, and government aims to boost India’s involvement in global standardisation activities. This shall also serve as a central hub for sharing information and promoting collaboration in the Standardisation of telecom and related ICT domains.

Sh. Rajaraman also unveiled the TEC standard on “Fairness Assessment and Rating of Artificial Intelligence Systems”, which has been meticulously crafted through extensive consultations with stakeholders by TEC. This standard outline comprehensive procedures for evaluating and rating the fairness of artificial intelligence systems, ensuring ethical and responsible AI deployment.

An Online Module for Voluntary Certification of telecom products was also introduced, which shall provide a streamlined process for certification.

Approval Certificate for Conditional Access System and the Technology Approval Certificate for Dual Band Outdoor Wi-Fi Access Point, was handed over to C-DoT, symbolising their commitment to quality and innovation.

Speaking on this occasion, Secretary Telecom emphasised that India has to play a leading role in the global telecom standardisation efforts. He suggested organising such events annually to bring industry, academia, startups and government organisations together for this purpose. His address focused contribution of research to economy and India becoming producers of technology.

Rajaraman said that India needs to follow the path of frugal innovation as the company has limited resources. “We can extract far more outcome than what we are doing even now if we are able to put our heads and heart together. It is very important to set aside petty differences, put in place some framework for collaboration. India needs to do a lot of things to become a major producer of technology.

India is not a country that can afford to throw away tens and hundreds of billions of dollars as many other countries are doing. Like in the case of America. America has borrowed tens of trillions of dollars in the world market and it is making available hundreds of billions of dollars to its research establishments. I think it is a very risky thing to do. They are imperilling the nation, they are imperilling the future of the country. That’s how I think. India cannot afford that.”

He said that standards development takes a lot of effort and collaborative and synergistic way of working is called for to enhance the outcome. Citing example of technology development at C-DoT, he said India has to always follow the path of frugal research and development. “C-DoT’s own investment made in the 4G core and other work that I have seen, which would have taken millions and billions of dollars for a private company to develop, has probably taken a few Rs 100 crore for C-DoT to develop,” he said. Rajaraman said that to make an impact as a nation, there is a need to work together.

The workshop featured esteemed speakers and experts from industries, academia, government organisations, and renowned research and development centres. Engaging discussions revolved around topics such as the step-by-step process of standard-making processes, conversion of patents into Standard Essential Patents (SEPs), and the significant role of academic institutions in fostering a vibrant Standards Community

Participants gained insights into the structure and significance of National working groups corresponding to these international Standardisation organisations

The event provided a platform to raise awareness and encourage active Indian participation in international standardisation bodies such as ITU, 3GPP, IEEE etc. The workshop emphasised the pivotal role of standardisation for businesses and start-ups, particularly through the Standard Essential Patents (SEP) mechanism.

Acknowledging the profound importance of contributing to global standards, the workshop aimed to strengthen India’s standing not only in the telecom domain but also in the international arena as a whole. The event fostered collaboration, knowledge sharing, and innovation, empowering Indian stakeholders to actively contribute to shaping global standards

National Workshop on Enhancing Indian Participation in Telecom Global Standards Bodies shall serve as a catalyst for India’s progression towards becoming a global frontrunner in telecom technologies and standards.

CT Bureau

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