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India: An uneven innovator

India currently ranks a lowly 58th on the Economic Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) international innovation list. The EIU study does not expect any dramatic changes in the ranking in the next five years. At best, India is projected to improve its rank only by one place to 57. The study suggests that India’s lower rank is because the environment is not conducive to innovation, which is reducing the efficiency of conversion of inputs to outputs.

So why is India unable to be the source of major innovations on a sustained basis although it has a large talent pool?

According to Rishikesha T Krishnan, professor of Corporate Strategy, and Jamuna Raghavan, chair professor of Entrepreneurship, IIM Bangalore, the reason why India remains an uneven innovator is because it has many barriers in its social, cultural and political fabric and these are sticky and threaten to persist for years to come.