Ministries & Departments
National Innovation Foundation (NIF) was set up in March 2000 with the assistance of Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, to strengthen the grassroots technological innovations and outstanding traditional knowledge. The mission is to help India become a creative and knowledge-based society by expanding policy and institutional space for grassroots technological innovators. NIF scouts, supports and spawns grassroots innovations developed by individuals and local communities in any technological field, helping in human survival without any help from formal sector. NIF helps grassroots innovators and outstanding traditional knowledge holders get due recognition, respect and reward for their innovations. It also tries to ensure that such innovations diffuse widely through commercial and/or non-commercial channels, generating material or non-material incentives for them and others involved in the value chain. With major contribution from the Honey Bee Network volunteers, NIF has pooled a database of over 225,000 technological ideas, innovations and traditional knowledge practices (not all unique, not all distinct) from over 585 districts of the country. NIF has till date recognised 816 grassroots innovators and school students at the national level in its various National Biennial Grassroots Innovation Award Functions and annual Dr A P J Abdul Kalam Ignite Children Award functions. In collaboration with various research & development (R&D) and academic institutions, agricultural & veterinary universities and others institutions, NIF has helped in getting several hundred grassroots technologies validated and/or value added. NIF has also set up an augmented Fabrication Laboratory (Fab Lab) with the help of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Boston, for product development and strengthening in-house research.