India still a long way from solving problems related to education, healthcare, nutrition: Narayana Murthy

Speaking at the inaugural event of the new Infosys Science Foundation (ISF) building in Bengaluru Thursday, founder of Infosys Ltd Narayana Murthy stressed on the need to offer innovative and affordable solutions in science, mathematics and engineering to solve India’s “grand problems”.

“Our country is making scientific and engineering progress. We have sent rockets and satellites into space, built dams, steel plants and have produced Covid vaccines. However, we are still a long way off from solving our grand problems of education, healthcare, nutrition and shelter for every one of our 1.4 billion Indians,” he said.

He added, “As people interested in science, mathematics and engineering, we must think about how they can solve our grand problems. The need of the day is for us to use the power of the human mind to find quick, innovative and affordable solutions to these and other major problems that our country is facing.” He added, science is a “front-line warrior” against solving the grand problems.

The ISF, which opened its physical space in the city Thursday, aims to facilitate opportunities for science enthusiasts, start-ups, companies, industrialists and students to exchange ideas and congregate to deliver science related speeches, presentations, workshops that addresses a larger social issue.

Kris Gopalakrishnan, the co-founder of Infosys, said, “Not many are utilising the advantage of Bengaluru’s capabilities in terms of tapping into deep technology and using the public spaces to exchange ideas. ISF wants to bring in the collaborative culture to utilise science and technology and work together in a public space. I also feel that we need to invest more money in research, wherein we need to increase spending from 0.7% of GDP to 3% of the GDP.”

ISF is also a foundation that gives the Infosys Prize to Indian scientists and scholars working on path breaking research in categories like engineering, computer science, mathematical sciences, social sciences, life sciences, physical sciences and humanities.

The inaugural event also featured a panel of students at various stages of their education and research careers who spoke about their aspirations and experiences in the greater Indian research landscape. A panel comprising Arundhati Ghosh (Executive Director, India Foundation for the Arts), Jahnavi Phalkey (Founding Director, Science Gallery Bengaluru), and V Ravichandar (Honorary Director, Bangalore International Centre) also discussed the importance of public spaces in enabling arts and sciences.

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