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Soumya Swaminathan is WHO chief scientist

Why in news?

  • Soumya Swaminathan has been named as the Chief Scientist in a newly created Chief Scientists department in WHO. The Chief Scientists division has been created to strengthen WHO’s core scientific work and ensure the quality and consistency of WHO’s norms and standards.
  • Swaminathan was one of the three the Deputy Director-General of the WHO.
  • She was the first Indian to hold the position at WHO. Cabinet approves

Continuation of Atal Innovation Mission (AIM)

Why in news?

The Union Cabinet has approved continuation of the Atal Innovation Mission. The Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) was set up in Niti Aayog in 2016.

In Brief:

  • It aims to promote a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. It seeks to create institutions and programs that enhance innovation in schools, colleges, and entrepreneurs in general.
  • The mission has two core functions: a) Entrepreneurship promotion and b) Innovation promotion
  • Entrepreneur promotion is done through Self-Employment and Talent Utilization. The Mission supports and mentors innovators to become successful entrepreneurs.
  • For promoting innovation, three schemes have been undertaken:
    • Atal Tinkering Labs,
    • Atal Incubation Centres and
    • Scale up support to established incubators.

Atal Tinkering Labs are established across schools in India. The objective is to a) foster curiosity, creativity and imagination among young children; and b) inculcate skills such as design mind set, computational thinking, adaptive learning, physical computing etc.

Atal Incubation Centre scheme seeks to establish new incubation centres to support innovative start-up businesses to become scalable and sustainable enterprises.

Scale up support to established incubators scheme seeks to augment capacity of established incubation centres by providing financial support.

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