India – 163 years behind China?

Bruce Einhorn

Some Asiatech readers complain that I'm anti-India, that I spend too much time comparing India to China, and that in these comparisons all too often India comes out looking bad. But of course lots of top Indian officials do the same thing. For instance: Gangan Prathap, the top scientist at the Centre for Mathematical Modelling and Computer Simulation in Banaglore. The C-MMACS, which got its start in the late 1980s by India’s Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, has its offices on the campus of the National Aerospace Laboratories, so it’s safe to say that it’s not peopled by a bunch of India-haters. Yet Prathap, the scientist-in-charge of the center, the other day made headlines with his unfavorable comparison of India to China. According to a report in Indian newspaper The Telegraph, Prathap says that India is more than a century and a half behind China when it comes to sci-tech human resources. According to the Telegraph’s report, “India will take at least 163 years to match China’s research workforce of 850,000 even if Beijing were to freeze the number today.” More: Prathap “has now used simple school algebra to show that even if India’s 4,500 annual science doctorates were to join the 115,000-strong science and technology workforce, the country won’t be able to touch the figure of 850,000 until 2170 AD.”

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