One Week One Lab: CSIR-NIIST plans series of high-profile seminars on live topics

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Top scientists, technocrats and administrators from major institutions across the country will attend a series of seminars during March 13-18 at the CSIR-National Institute of Interdisciplinary Science and Technology (NIIST) herein a bid to explore ways of effectively leveraging the fruits of scientific and technological research yielded by the national institution for the wellbeing of the society.

The high-profile deliberations covering a wide spectrum of live topics relating to agricultural, environmental and defence sectors are organised at its Pappanamcode campus in the city as part of the One Week One Lab (OWOL) programme launched by the Government of India.

The first such initiative in the history of the country, OWOL is aimed at showcasing the legacy, exclusive innovations and technological breakthrough achieved by each of 37 laboratories of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).NIIST, Thiruvananthapuram, is a constituent laboratory of CSIR.

Besides a day-long Startup conclave, a thrust area of the weeklong event will be the extension of scientific and technological breakthroughs to the MSME sector to support entrepreneurial development touching a wide range of areas, said Dr Anandharamakrishnan, Director, CSIR-NIIST, Thiruvananthapuram.

An impressive line-up of speakers will deliberate extensively on each topic, seeking to lay out a road map for the further advances by identifying areas of great potential as well as domains that need greater attention,he added.

A highlight of the week-long event will be the Millet Conclave,planned in the wake of the United Nations declaring 2023 as the International Year of Millets, as proposed by India. The programmes in this segment will focus on giving a big boost to cultivation, consumption and value-addition of millets, which figure prominently in securing the national and global food security.

Known as ‘super food’ or ‘nutri-cereals’,the traditionally cultivated millets in India include Pearl millet (Kambam/Bajra), Foxtail millet (Thina), Proso millet (Panivaraku), Finger millet (Panjapullu/Raggi), Kodo millet (Varagu), Barnyard millet (Kuthiravaali), Sorghum and Little millet (Chaama).

Apart from scientific and agronomic sessions, a Millet Food Festival, Farmers meet, cooking and recipe competitions for the public, B2B sessions and talks by chefs will also be held as part of the Millet Conclave.

Other major seminars of OWOL are those relating to clean-up technology (Prithvi), Ayush healthcare systems (Ayurswasthya), innovation in agriculture (Sree Anna), strategic material (Raksha) and energy materials and solutions (Urja).

The speakers in various sessions includeDr N Kalaiselvi, Director General, CSIR, Dr Manoj Nesary, Advisor, Ministry of Ayush, Prof V K Ramachandran, Vice- Chairperson, Kerala State Planning Board, Shri K R Jyothilal, Additional Chief Secretary, Government of Kerala, Dr B Ashok, Agriculture Production Commissioner and Principal Secretary,Department of Agiculture, Dr Saji Gopinath, Vice Chancellor, Digital University Kerala, Shri Anoop Ambika, CEO, Kerala Startup Mission, Dr P M Varier, Managing Trustee, Kottakkal Arya Vaidya Sala and Shri Rajesh Jha, MD and CEO, Adani Vizhinjam International Sea Port Ltd.

The national conclave on Strategic Materials will see participation of experts from Defence and strategic establishments like ISRO, DRDO and DAE.

The segment on Ayush will focus on the vast potential of Ayurveda and other indigenous medicine systems in providing holistic and affordable health solutions to the world.

The session on clean-up technologies (Prithvi) will deliberate on cutting-edge technology-driven and socially relevant initiatives in effectively addressing the grim environmental challenges, staring at humanity.

Ensuring access to clean, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy will by come for in-depth analyses in the segment on energy materials and devices (Urja).

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