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Danish experts engage in green transition of India

09.12.2020  10:24

Danish experts engage in India’s green


A new collaboration agreement between Innovation Centre Denmark in India and the Danish Academy of Technical Sciences ensures that a number of Danish experts can engage in Echo Network – an initiative under the Indian government, created to contribute to India’s green transition.

ATV – the Danish Academy of Technical Sciences – visited India in 2019 with a large delegation of Danish technology leaders. The learning from the trip was unequivocal: If India does not succeed in its green transition, the World as such will not be able to reach a globally sustainable future. The conclusion was equally obvious, i.e. ATV, as a technical and solution-oriented think tank, should contribute to create more and stronger ties between India and Denmark, especially in connection to the green transition. Against this background, ATV and the Danish Innovation Centre in India have made a cooperation agreement, the first step of which makes it possible to engage Danish experts in Echo Network.

Unique effort to engage science in society

Echo Network is initiated by the Principal Scientific Advisor to Prime Minister Modi, Professor K. VijayRaghavan. Concerning the Danish participation in Echo Network, Professor VijayRaghavan says: “India is currently engaged in a large number of efforts regarding health, agriculture, and ecosystem sustainability that comprise government and non-government entities at all scales. What we need is to enhance the dialogue between these entities, and to align strategies in both goals and actions. We are therefore pleased to see so many organizations, including those in Denmark and other countries, join our Indian government agencies, companies, institutes, and NGOs in this unique effort to embed and engage science in society.”

Mutual road to economic restart – and green transition

The Danish Ambassador to India, Mr Freddy Svane, took part in ATV’s visit to India in 2019, and stressed, on that occasion, that the visit created the foundations for new and comprehensive collaborations between India and Denmark. Therefore, the Ambassador is also pleased that ATV and the Innovation Centre cooperate on engaging Danish experts in the Echo Network. “With the Green Strategic Partnership, India and Denmark have confirmed that our mutual road to an economic restart after COVID involves new solutions to global problems such as climate change, pollution and sustainability in general”, Svane states. “ATV’s engagement in the Echo Network under the Principal Scientific Advisor is an important step that reinforces Denmark as an active co-creator of the research agendas that will inform Indian’s development in years to come. You have my full support.”

Great potential in the collaboration between ATV and the Innovation Centre

Anders Bjarklev, President of ATV and Denmark’s Technical University and chair of the Danish Rectors’ Conference: “The new collaboration between ATV and the Innovation Centre and our joint efforts to engage Danish experts in the Echo Network is an important step for developing closer relations between India and Denmark within the framework of the Green Strategic Partnership. ATV has a broad mandate to engage the business community, universities and the public sector, and combined with the Innovation Centre’s in-depth knowledge of Indian society, we have the best possibilities for providing a strong line-up of experts who can engage in the Echo Network and involve themselves in the discussions concerning a new research agenda for India’s green transition.”

Finally, Lia Leffland, Academy Director, Danish Academy of Technical Sciences: “As part of our Science & Engineering project, ATV is engaging itself in new international partnerships and projects that our members can involve themselves in. Towards this end, we have worked closely with the Danish Innovation Centres in the US, China and India. Therefore, it is natural to take the next step and commit to the agreement with the innovation centre in India; we want to create more possibilities for our members to engage and apply their expertise to the enormous challenges that India is facing as part of the country’s green transition. We are very humble about taking part in this journey as we realise that working with and in India requires a new look on existing technologies and the development of new technologies all together.”

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The collaboration agreement between the Danish Academy of Technical Sciences (ATV) and the Innovation Centre Denmark in India was signed in the autumn 2020, and is expected to contribute towards the successful implementation of the Green Strategic Partnership between India and Denmark.

The first joint effort concerns the identification and engagement of Danish experts in the Echo Network. Echo Network has been established to contribute towards the articulation of a new research agenda for India’s green transition and focuses, in the first instance, on three imports areas in which five Danish experts participate:

·         Improving Health and Hygiene Systems (Else Smith, consultant; Robert Skov, International Centre for Antimicrobial Resistance Solutions

·         Regenerative Agriculture (Claus Felby, Novo Nordisk Fundation; Søren Hvilshøj, Rambøll

·         Human and Environmental Ecosystem Valuation (Ulla Röttger, consultant)

In addition to the Danish experts, Echo Network involves more than 80 researchers, industry people and NGO representatives from India, US and the UK in a number of virtual workshops throughout November and December. These workshops identify action areas that the Echo Networks Research Fellows will qualify further as part of the efforts involved in articulating a new research agenda for India’s green transition.

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