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Bilateral  Cooperation in the field of Science & Technology
between India and Japan

Japan’s priority strategies for Science & Technology

  • Promotion of basic research

In the pursuit of universal knowledge from a long term perspective, aiming to accumulate intellectual achievements to generate new knowledge constantly

  • Prioritization of R & D in response to issues important to the state and society.

For ensuring sustained economic development through vitalization of economy and industry, and ensuring safe and secure lives for its people.

Priority strategic areas

  • Life Science
  • Information & Communication
  • Environment
  • Nanotechnology and materials
  • Energy
  • Manufacturing sciences/technologies
  • Infrastructure
  • Frontier science

The ongoing  Bilateral Cooperative Science Programme:

The S&T Agreement between the two countries was signed in November 1985.

  • It is implemented through India-Japan Joint Committee  (IJJC) on Cooperation in S&T  which looks into major policy issues, reviews the progress and proposes measures for enhancing  the cooperation.
  • From Indian side it is coordinated by Department of Science and Technology (DST) with members from CSIR, ICMR, DBT and other scientific departments of India.  The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) coordinates on behalf of the Government of Japan, with members from Education, Science, Health, Industry and other relevant Ministries.
  • Under this Committee, the mode of cooperation includes joint projects, joint workshops/seminars, joint utilization of major research facilities and science and technology agency fellowships.
  • Other cooperation arrangements like those with different agencies and institutions are also  monitored  by  the Joint Committee.
  • Implementation Arrangement (IA) between DST & Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology (MEXT) was signed on 25th January, 2014 in New Delhi.  

Indo Japan Joint S&T Committee Co-Chaired by Secretaries from both sides is the apex body which provides vision and direction to the cooperative activities. The 8th Meeting of Indo-Japan Joint S&T Committee was held on 28th October, 2014 in Japan.

The India-Japan S&T relationship was started in 1993 and has several components with 3 different Japanese Government Agencies.This is a value based partnership working on the principles of 'reciprocity and co-funding'. 

Collaboration with Japan Society for the Promotion of Science   (JSPS):

  • The India-Japan Cooperative Science Programme was initiated in 1993 with the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) being guided by India-Japan Science Council (IJSC) – Co-chaired by Secretary, DST.
  • Till date 18 meetings of India-Japan Science Council were held and the last 18th meeting was held in Japan on March 16, 2015.
  • Priority areas of joint project and Joint Workshops  includes: Physical and Chemical Systems; Fundamental Science, Engineered Materials Systems; Engineering and Processes, Natural Systems; Biology and Life Sciences, Global Systems; Earth-Space, Marine, and Environment and Mathematics and Computational Science.
  • Till date more than 250 joint projects were supported, 1600 exchange visits of scientists were taken place from both sides, 65 joint seminars/workshops and 9 Asian Academic seminars were organized, 9 Raman-Mizushima lectures were delivered by eminent Indian and Japanese scientists.

Collaboration with the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST)

  • Against the recent call, both side agreed to support three projects in the areas of Biomedical Sciences. Earlier, a total of 18 projects were supported in the areas of “Interdisciplinary Information and Communication Technology.

Collaboration with RIKEN

  • An Addendum to the Memorandum of Understanding between DST and RIKEN was signed on 14th September, 2013 in New Delhi.
  • The Addendum includes the cooperation in the areas of Material Science and Life Science and provision to provide financial support for mobility based joint projects which include exchange of faculties, students, scientists, research staff, technicians, specialists, experts and organization of joint workshop/seminar

Indian Beam Line Facility at High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK) Tsukuba:

MoU between Department of Science and Technology (DST) and KEK Tsukuba (High Energy Accelerator Research Organization) was signed during PM’s visit on 22 October 2008 for leasing a synchrotron beamline and constructing an experiment hutch for research in the area of material science and the Photon Factory KEK.  As per the MoU, DST(GOI) sanctioned the project for establishment of Indian Beamline facility at KEK Tsukuba with an annual lease cost of 150,00,000 Yen  in 2009 for five years.  Total cost of the project is about Rs 20 crore in five years. As has been the practice followed by Synchrotron facilities, world over, at least half (about 360 shifts of 8 hours each every year) of the beam time are available to Indian scientists approved by the Indian Screening Committee and the remaining time are allotted by KEK. Thus on average, 30-40 experiments are carried out by Indian scientists every year on this facility.
The Beam line was handed over to the Indian side with effect from 1st April 2009. A 2-member Indian scientific team is posted at KEK for preparing the experiment hutch at the beam line. Indian scientists from SINP, Kolkata; Institute of Technology (BHU), Varanasi; SNBNCBS, Kolkata; UGC-DAE Consortium for Scientific Research, Indore and BARC, Mumbai have been doing experiments using the facility at the Photon Factory, KET, Tsukuba. 

The Second Extension of the MOU on S&T cooperation between DST and High Energy Accelerator Research Organisation (KEK) was signed and the second phase of the Indian beamline at KEK, Tsukuba was inaugurated by Hon'bleMinister S&T and ES Dr. Harsh Vardhan during his visit to Japan during 2-4 November 2015 .

New Science and Technology Initiative:


 With a view to provide more focus and purpose to S&T cooperation between the two countries in October 2003, it was conveyed to consider setting up of a Science and Technology Initiative to support pure science research in frontier areas of Science and Technology. It was also suggested that research institutions in either country can act as nodal points and sign MOUs to facilitate implementation.

During the visit of Prime Minister of Japan to India in April, 2005 it was agreed that the new Science and Technology Initiative would explore the possibility of substantial cooperation in the emerging areas of modern biology, biotechnology, health and care, agriculture, hydrocarbon fuels, nano-science and nano-technology, environment, information and communication technology, robotics, alternative sources of energy etc.

Various meetings towards New S & T Initiative

i) IJJC Meeting  to launch New Initiative

The meeting of India-Japan Joint Committee on Science and Technology (IJJC), which could not be held after Pokhran II, was revived after a gap of 6 years and the 7th Meeting held in India in December 2005.  (Prior to this, the 6th Meeting of IJJC was held on 6-7 September, 1999 in Tokyo and the 5th Meeting was held in New Delhi in December 1997.)

The Committee agreed to work on the new initiative. The fields of research cooperation were prioritized and specific areas were identified.

ii)  The First meeting of India-Japan Science and Technology Initiative which was held in Tokyo, Japan on 16-17 October, 2006.(In three fields of nano-technology, life science and ICT, 12 areas were identified).

iii)  This was immediately followed byConsultations between Ministers in charge of Science and Technology of the two countries from 18 to 20 October 2006.
They approved the launching of the following joint projects under the Science and Technology Initiative:

  • Joint R & D Programme in areas such as nano-technology, life science and information and communication technology(ICT);
  • Development of Open Access Database of the available ongoing and prospective research undertaken individually and through joint collaboration in their respective academic, public and industrial institutions;
  • Collaboration in the area of scientific deep sea drilling.

The MOU between Department of Science and Technology, India and with Japan Science and Technology, Japan was signed on 8th December 2006.

  • Under this initiative, a workshop on 'Open Access Data Bases' was organized in Japan on 26 February 2007 by the office of S & T Policy, Cabinet Secretariat, Japan. Prof. K. Ramarithum, Dean (R&D) and Professor Computer Science & Engineering, IIT Mumbai attended the workshop. It is expected that some joint proposals would be received under the ICT programme with JST.
  • A joint workshop on ICT was organized in CDAC-Noida on 16 July 2007.
  • Second International Expert Meeting on Open Access Data Base (OADB) initiative took place on 10-11 March, 2008 at Tokyo.
  • Three annual calls for proposal were opened for joint research projects in the area of Interdisciplinary Information and Communication Technology in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
  • In total 18 joint R&D projects of three year duration each have been initiated in last three years at an average cost of about Rs 40 lakh per project. 
  • The second DST-JST workshop was held during 28-29th Feb 2012 in Tokyo “Biomedical Research”. 10 member scientific delegation from India participated.
  • During 2013-14 joint calls for proposals were made on Biomedical research theme and are under review process for funding.

A Letter of Intent on the Strategic International Cooperative Program between DST and the Japan Science and Technology Agency in the area of Functional Applications of Physical Sciences in Information and Communication Technology (including Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analysis) and to establish reciprocal Fellowship program for capacity building and human resource development was signed during the visit of PM Abe to India on 11 December 2015.

SAKURA Science Programme: JST has recently initiated a programme to invite high school students from Asian countries to visit Japanese universities and research laboratories and also in fact with Nobel laureates. India was included in this programme in 2015. DST is the nodal agencyfor this programme in India. 99 high–school Indian students visited Japanunder this programme last year.

Cooperation in Space Science and Technology

Japan Space Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Collaboration dates back to 1960s, since the establishment of Thumba Equatorial Rocket Station at Thumba (Thiruvananthapuram). Scientists from Japan especially from Nagoya University have successfully used ISRO facilities at Thumba and Balloon facility at Hyderabad for x-ray, gama-ray and infrared observation of the universe.

  • In 1998, Japan has contributed two instruments - LAWP (Low Atmosphere Wing Profile) and Lidar facility to ISRO’s NARL (National Atmospheric Research Laboratory, located at Gadanki – Andhra Pradesh) that has benefited many atmospheric researchers in India. 
  • MOU was signed for the first time between the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in October, 2005 to cooperate in the field of space science including lunar missions and X-ray astronomy, satellite remote sensing, satellite communication, and disaster management support.
  • Under the provisions laid under MOU between ISRO & JAXA, both the agencies are working closely with exchange of senior level scientists and policy makers on two sides and monitoring the progress in the field of outer space research, satellite communication, remote sensing and for support of each other’s lunar missions.  To this effect, latest visit from ISRO side took place during April 2007.
  • An agreement for cooperation in space based X-ray astronomy is likely to be inked between ISRO & JAXA during this year.  This agreement envisions joint calibration on X-ray instruments, coordinated observations between Japanese Suzaku and Indian Astrosat and joint development of X-ray astronomy instruments for future missions. 
  • A 12-member delegation from Department of Space/ISRO visited Tsukuba from 8-14 July 2007 to attend MYPEP programme organized by JAXA. 
  • ISRO co-hosted the 14th Session of Asia Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) from 21-23 November 2007 in Bangalore.  This forum aims at promoting cooperation in space activities in AP region.  Active participation from Japanese side is indicated. 
  • India has joined the Japan led Sentinel Asia project under the aegis of APRSAF as Data providing Node, Capacity building Node and User Node for empowering the countries of AP region to manage disasters through space based information. 
  • JAXA has supported the ISRO’s initiative to seek Japan’s support to the ISRO funded and managed UN-CCSTEAP located at Dehradun, through signing of Host Country Agreement. 
  • Antrix, the commercial arm of the Department of Space, has secured and successfully executed a commercial contract for supply solar sail and boom for Japanese satellite,  MTSAT-II which was launched last year. 
  • Indian scientists are actively participating in Japan’s programmes related to remote sensing data from its earth observation satellite ALOS, ADEOS, JERS-I for scientific investigations.
  • Scientist level interactions happened on lunar missions, which are expected to gain momentum after the launch of Japanese Selene on 16 August 2007 and the launch of Indian Chandrayan-I in first quarter of 2008.
  • A 5 member delegation from JAXA visited ISRO, Bangalore in March 2012 to discuss on organizing joint symposium to commemorate 60 years of diplomatic relations between India and Japan.

Cooperation in Nuclear Science and Technology

MOU on Core University Programme was signed between Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) in March, 2006.

Under Core University Program, JSPS and DST shall select fields to be promoted under the Core University Programme and designate Core Universities or Research Institutes in their respective countries. High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK) from Japan and Raja Ramanna Centre for Advanced Technology (RRCAT) from India will be the Core Universities.  KEK is a prominent international research institute employing accelerators to explore universe, elementary particles, nuclei, matters and life.  About seven research scientists belonging to TIFR, RRCAT and NSC are working on its B-Meson system.   “Accelerator Physics” is one area for cooperation. RRCAT, Indore and KEK, Tsukuba are the core institutions from Indian and Japanese sides for programme. Two Indo-Japanese school on ‘Accelerator Physics’ were organized.

  • Dr. Anil Kakodkar, Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) and Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) visited Tokyo for attending meeting of ITER during 31 March – 4 April 2006.
  • Dr. R. Chidambram, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, visited to participate as a Keynote Speaker in a Seminar on Nuclear Fuel, hosted by Atomic Energy Society of Japan (AESJ) from 9 to 15 July, 2006.
  • A five-member delegation from Department of Atomic Energy and Institute of Plasma Research visited Japan from 11-12 July 2007 to attend Second Meeting of Interim ITER Council held at Tokyo.
  • Dr. R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Adviser to GOI along with Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Science & Technology visited Kyoto (Japan) to attend STS Forum meetings during 3-5 October 2009. 
  • Dr. Baldev Raj, Distinguished Scientist & Director, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research, Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu visited Tokyo from 08-11 Sep 2010, to attend 3rd International Consultancy Meeting on “International Harmonization of Safety Aspects of Sodium Cooled Fast Reactor”. 

MoU between DAE and KEK

  A high level delegation led by Chairman Atomic Energy Commission, India, DR. Srikumar Banarjee visited KEK Tsukuba on 23-01-2012 to participate in MoU signing ceremony. The MoU facilitates collaboration for R &D with DAE institutions viz., Rajaramanna Center for Advanced Technology, Indore, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, Kolkata and Bhabha Atomic Research Center (BARC), Mumbai on various aspects of accelerator research. Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission India and Director General KEK have signed the MoU.

  • A high level scientific delegation comprising Dr. S.C. Chetal, Director Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research (IGCAR) and Dr. Gurusharan Singh, Associate Director, Isotope Group, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and Dr. Prabhat Kumar, Director, Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam Ltd (BHAVNI) and Dr. C. Sivaji, Counsellor, Science and Technology, Embassy of India, Tokyo have participated in International Symposium  on Envision  the Future Nuclear Science and Technology based on the Lessons Learned from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station Accident 11 April – 14 April 2012 was organized at Funabori,  Mito,  and Onagawa, organized by Japan Atomic Energy Agency and NPO Nuclear Salon.  The delegation also visited J-PARC research facilities in Mito and Nuclear Power Plant in Onagawa.
  • A high level delegation from DAE represented by Vice President of Indian Nuclear Society visited JAES during 2-7 September 2013 and participated in the annual meeting organized by JAES.  An agreement was signed between INS and JAES on 6 September 2013 in the presence of Ambassador of India to Japan. 

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) & Department of Bio-Technology (DBT)

The DBT-AIST, Tsukuba signed MoU in the year 2006.  AIST-DBT collaboration is very active for scientists exchange and its joint partnerships, seminars which has benefited both Japanese and Indian scientists in knowledge sharing.  The MoU got extended in 2013 and also a joint laboratory called DBT-AIST Laboratory for biomedical imaging (DIALAB) was also inaugurated by Secretary DBT on 3 October 2013.  Efforts are being made now to initiate establishment of similar joint laboratory at Regional Center for Biotechnology in Faridabad/Delhi.

  • A high level scientific team from India led by Secretary, DBT, Dr. K. VijayRaghavan visited AIST Tsukuba on 03 October 2013 to inaugurate DBT-AIST DIALAB facility and also to renew the existing MoU between the two institutes. 

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and & Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)

  • A Joint Workshop on Tsunami as decided in the IJSC meeting of January, 2005 was also organized at National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI) during 18-19 March, 2005 in Hyderabad. The follow up seminar on Tsunami was organized in Japan at Port and Airport Research Institute (PARI), Sendai from August 6 to 9, 2006. A senior scientist from NGRI took part in the proceedings.
  • MOU between National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) of Japan and Council of Scientific on 12 February 2007.and Industrial Research (CSIR) of India was signed
  • A workshop on collaboration between AIST and CSIR was held on 12 February 2007 at CSIR Science Centre, New Delhi, for mutual cooperation in the areas of coal, biomass, organic chemical process and life sciences. This was a follow up of the MOU between AIST of Japan and CSIR of India.
  • Joint Projects are being coordinated between DST and JSPS as reported in the India Japan Science council meeting in March 2007.
  • Following this collaborative research is continuing between  Japan Agency for Marine Science and Technology and National Institute of Oceanography, Goa and now JAMSTEC visited India in 2012 Jan and held discussions with National Geophysical Research Institute Hyderabad and National Institute of Ocean Technology, Chennai and with Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India to have MoUs.

 Miscellaneous collaborations

In addition to bilateral collaborations between India and Japan, several institutional cooperation and individual scientists level collaborations between Indian institutes and universities viz., Indian Institute of Sciences, Indian Institute of Technologies, Delhi University, Manipal University, National Institute of Oceanography, National Geophysical Research Institute, National Institute of Ocean Technology, Indian Institute of Geomagnetism, Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Advanced International Research Center for Powdered Metallurgy, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR) and Japanese institutes like, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), RIKEN,  National Institute of Material Sciences, Japan Agency for Marine Science and Technology, Tokyo University, Hokkaido University, Tohoku University, Toyo University, Keio University etc.

MOUs between India and Japan in Science and Technology

  • A MoU was signed between ISRO and JAXA on October 13, 2005 in Tokyo for enhancing capabilities of space X-ray astronomy.
  • A MoU was signed between Petroleum Conservation Research Association, India and Energy Conservation Center (ECCJ), Japan on 28.6.2006 for undertaking various collaborative programmes in the energy field.
  • MOU on Core University Programme was signed between Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) in 20 March, 2006.
  • MOU on cooperation in science and technology between the Department of Science & Technology (DST) of India and RIKEN was signed on 8th December 2006 to collaborate in the areas (i) Detection tools for security (ii) genome related research and (iii) computational science.
  • MOU on scientific cooperation programme between DST and Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) wassigned on 8th December 2006 for funding new joint research projects related to nano-technology, information and communication technology, etc.
  • A Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) for the development of Pandit Dwarka Prasad Mishra (PDPM) Indian Institute of information Technology, Design & Manufacturing (IIITDM) Jabalpur was signed between the Governments of India and Japan on December 15, 2006. MOFA has formed a consortium of Japanese universities/ institutes/ industries that will assist the IIITDM-J to develop those areas in which Japan has considerable skills and expertise. University of Tokyo agreed to be the core organization of the consortium.
  • MOU between National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) of Japan and Department of Biotechnology (DBT) of India was signed on 12 February 2007.
  • MOU between National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) of Japan and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) of India was signed on 12 February 2007.
  • A MoU was signed between Japan Oil, Gas & Metals National Cooperation (JOGMEC) and The Directorate General of Hydrocabons on 16.2.2007 to jointly develop a plan of action to provide direction and coordination for technical collaboration in Gas Hydrate research field.
  • A MoU was signed between the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan (IEEJ) and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), of India on 2-7.2007 on joint research and study of energy issues.
  • MoU between DST and KEK Tsukuba (High Energy Accelerator Research Organisation) was signed during PM’s visit on 22 October 2008 for leasing  a synchrotron beamline and constructing an experiment  hutch for research in the area of material science and the Photon Factory KEK
  • MoU between DAE and KEK Tsukuba (High Energy Accelerator Research Organisation) was signed on 23 January 2012 for cooperation and collaboration viz. Belle II experiment at KEK, particle detector development, synchrotron science, accelerator science and school and workshops. 
  • MoU between Indian Nuclear Society and Japan Atomic Energy Society was signed on 6 September 2013 in the presence of Ambassador at Embassy of India.
  • A multi-institutional MoU was signed between DST, DBT and NCBS from India and RIKEN, Japan in Bangalore on 15 September 2013.
  • DBT-AIST Agreement was renewed on 3 October 2013 and DBT-AIST DIALAB facility was inaugurated in Tsukuba.
  • An Implementation Arrangement between MEXT and DST was signed on 25 January 2014 during the visit of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to India.
  • DBT-AIST working agreement to establish DBT-AIST DIALAB facility at DBT Regional Centre in Delhi was signed on 4 March 2014.

S&T Eco-systems in India (Links)

  • Department of Atomic Energy (www.dae.gov.in)
  • Department of Space (www.dst.gov.in/stsysindia/space.htm)
  • Department of Science & Technology (www.dst.gov.in)
  • Department of Bio-technology (dbtindia.nic.in/index.asp)
  • Ministry of Earth Sciences(dod.nic.in)
  • Ministry of Environment (envfor.nic.in)
  • Ministry of Agriculture (agricoop.nic.in)
  • Ministry of MNRE (www.mnre.gov.in)
  • Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (mohfw.nic.in)
  • Indian Meteorological Department (www.imd.gov.in)
  • Survey of India (www.surveyofindia.gov.in)
  • Geological Survey of India (www.portal.gsi.gov.in)
  • Archeological Survey of India  (asi.nic.in)
  • National Atlas Thematic Mapping (natmo.gov.in)
  • National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting( www.ncmrwf.gov.in)

S & T Associations in Japan

  • Indian Scientists Association of Japan (www.isaj.org)
  • Indian JSPS Alumni Association (www.indianjspsalumni.org)