India and Australia join forces to innovate on areas of national challenge

India and Australia have joined forces to drive innovation in areas with national challenges and common priorities for both countries, an official said on Saturday.

Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog and Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) – Australia’s national science agency – have joined forces by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (LoI) to foster collaboration to boost innovation activities, a statement said.

The move came during Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s visit to India when he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi on Friday.

An official said the meeting between Modi and Albanese covered areas of mutual interest and explored ways to strengthen bilateral engagement in a number of key areas, with innovation being a key element.

The LoI between AIM and CSIRO calls for greater collaboration on areas of common interest and strategic priorities, and serves as a general framework for collaboration designed to facilitate the development of more programme-specific interventions.

The heart of the bilateral engagement is the India-Australia Innovation and Technology Challenge (IA-ITC) – a program designed to bring together the innovation ecosystems of India and Australia.

The program intends to leverage the complementary skills and resources of both countries’ innovation ecosystems.

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According to a statement, the IA-ITC builds on the success of the India Australia Circular Economy (IACE) Hackathon 2021, where university students, start-ups and SMEs from India and Australia developed innovative technology-based solutions for the circular economy value chain of the food system.

Chintan Vaishnav, Mission Director – AIM, NITI Aayog said: “We are very pleased to be working with CSIRO in fostering innovation and co-developing the India Australia Innovation and Technology Challenge.”

“This partnership and in particular the IA-ITC program is an exciting opportunity for India and Australia to work together at different levels of the ecosystem involving start-ups, SMEs, incubators and accelerators, VCs and industry. This will open new horizons of knowledge sharing and co-creation given CSIRO’s extensive experience with science and technology programs.”

Jonathan Law, Executive Director – Growth, CSIRO said: “CSIRO is excited to partner with AIM and work to solve shared global challenges. AIM has an impressive track record of nurturing and leveraging world-class innovation and entrepreneurs. We look forward to combining our strengths and expertise to create scientific breakthroughs that have real-world social, economic and environmental impacts.” India and Australia join forces to innovate on areas of national challenge

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