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'China grew R&D and industry together, India has a lot of work to do here,' says Zoho's Sridhar Vembu

Jaya Vishwakarma
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Sridhar Vembu

Zoho CEO Sridhar Vembu

Chennai-based Zoho CEO Sridhar Vembu, in a recent post on X (formerly Twitter), said that China's rise over the past 20 years has been "astounding," and it now publishes more high-quality research papers than the US or EU.

He noted that China's surge in R&D has coincided with its industrial prowess. "The two cannot be decoupled," he asserted.

Vembu mentioned that India has a lot of work to do here. He proposed a "National Technology Mission" to identify key fields where India needs to enhance its industrial capabilities and foster public-private and academia-industry collaborations.

Vembu also suggested establishing national awards for top-performing teams in each subfield.


"Finally people who are pessimistic because "corruption" or "politics" or "reservation" etc such pessimism was also common in China. China didn't end pervasive corruption or become a democracy before she rose as a technological power," he said.

"India can rise too, and we don't need everything to be perfect. We need optimism and a can-do spirit," Vembu added.

Netizens reaction

Vembu's post has garnered over 222,000 views and more than 4,400 likes so far. Many users agreed with Vembu's statements and shared their reactions in the comments section.

"Diversion from Spending on corruption to R&D , without losing margin we can achieve . Not a piece of research getting published as an example from our traditional Ayurveda Medicine practice , despite it got separate ministry Problem is culture from top - politicians , Industry veterans , experts - again can be traced to margin pressure," a user wrote.

"Well put. Indians hve a complex that anything Western is superior incl.research, while chinese r nationalist in thinking. To cross this barrier, your idea of R & D paper publishing, NTM being nodal agency is great! You may recall, to recognise  individual talents ,Sri Narayana Murthy of Infosys started awarding annual awards years back," another wrote.

"Sir, what percentage of sales does your company spend on R&D?," a third questioned.