Indian Science Congress to focus on empowering women in STEM at 108th edition

A special programme to showcase the contribution of women in science and technology will be held with lectures by renowned women scientists
The Indian Science Congress will meet at the Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University | Pic: Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University
The Indian Science Congress will meet at the Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University | Pic: Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University

The Indian Science Congress will meet after a hiatus of two years in Nagpur, Maharashtra, on Tuesday, January 3. The event will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually.

The last Indian Science Congress, a significant event in the scientific community, took place in Bengaluru in January 2020. The 108th session of ISC, a five-day event, will be held at Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, which is marking its 100th anniversary this year.

The focal theme of this year's Science Congress is "Science and Technology for Sustainable Development with Women Empowerment." The annual Congress will host discussions on sustainable development, women empowerment, and the role that science and technology can play in achieving these goals. The secretaries of science departments are expected to present a 2030 roadmap in their respective areas of expertise on Tuesday, December 3.

The event will also cover a variety of topics, including the COVID-19 pandemic, advancements in computer science, cancer research, space sciences, and vaccines. Attendees will discuss ways to increase the number of women in higher levels of teaching, research, and industry. They will also consider ways to increase the number of women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) fields and to ensure equal opportunities and participation in education, research, and economics.

There will also be a special program to highlight the contributions of women in science and technology, featuring lectures by well-known female scientists. The event will include a Children's Science Congress, designed to foster scientific curiosity and interest in children. The Farmers' Science Congress will provide a platform to boost the bio-economy and encourage young people to pursue careers in agriculture. The Tribal Science Congress will be a platform for showcasing indigenous ancient knowledge systems and practices, with a focus on empowering tribal women.

It appears that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not be able to attend the gathering of top scientists in person due to a busy schedule, marking the first time in nearly two decades that the prime minister will not be present at the event. In 2004, then-Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had to miss the inaugural ceremony of the Indian Science Congress held in Chandigarh due to inclement weather. Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari and Jitendra Singh, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis will attend the inaugural event.

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