CSIR-NISCAIR (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research -National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources) is celebrating its Diamond Jubilee Year during 2011-2012. The concluding function of the year-long celebrations is being held on 17 October 2012.
The former President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam will be the Chief Guest at the function. Shri Vayalar Ravi, Minister of Science & Technology, Earth Sciences, Overseas Indian Affairs and Small & Medium Enterprises, Dr. Ashwani Kumar, Minister of State for Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Planning, and Prof. Samir K. Brahmachari, Director General, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research and Secretary, DSIR will be present on the occasion.
The largest institute in the country engaged in science communication, the National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR), a constituent establishment of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), realizes that while creativity leads to knowledge, for this knowledge to be really useful it needs to be communicated and disseminated to stakeholders. Knowledge is power, in the words of Francis Bacon, but only when it reaches the masses.
During the past sixty years, CSIR-NISCAIR has carved out a niche for itself in the arena of Science Communication. It has been disseminating scientific information to the scientific community through its 17 peer-reviewed research journals covering all the major disciplines of science & technology, and two abstracting journals. CSIR-NISCAIR journals notched up an increase of >41% in Impact Factor (IF) over that from the previous year, according to the Journal Citation Reports 2011 (both Science edition and Social Sciences edition) released during the last week of June. Two journals, viz. Indian Journal of Experimental Biology and Indian Journal of Biochemistry & Biophysics have even crossed an Impact Factor of 1.0 – a rarity for Indian Journals.
CSIR-NISCAIR has also played a prominent role in popularizing science in the country through its three popular science magazines – Science Reporter (English), Vigyan Pragati (Hindi) and Science ki Duniya (Urdu) – all of which are well circulated throughout the country. The Institute has brought out a large number of well-illustrated and moderately-priced popular science books on topics ranging from cells and genes to computers and artificial intelligence, from atom and materials to space technology and stars.
The Institute also offers services such as abstracting and indexing, design and development of databases, bibliometric services, foreign language translation, and library automation. CSIR-NISCAIR hosts the Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Information Service (MAPIS) that provides bibliographic references on plants and plant products, animals and minerals; Online Information Retrieval Services; and computerized database of National Union Catalogue of Scientific Serials in India (NUCSSI).
During the Diamond Jubilee year, CSIR-NISCAIR took up the cause of retrieving the concept of Scientific Temper before it is lost in the cacophony triggered by the changing scientific, technological and economic order. The scientific community can ill afford to close its eyes towards the fact that during the past few years there has been a marked increase in public display of religious identities, and privatisation of the electronic media has also led to unabashed promotion of superstitions and non-scientific dogmas and notions through TV serials and the highly competitive news channels.
CSIR-NISCAIR embraces a wide spectrum of society in the country ranging from students and teachers to scientists and professionals, from industries and research institutions to even farmers and the common masses. It is committed to enhancing its reach even further through innovative and technological interventions in the coming years.