• Information Dissemination & Products

    CSIR is making concerted efforts to maximize the use of modern ICT in the present era of Information Technology.  It has embarked upon several innovative projects, which are based on modern IT techniques, and has made commendable progress in the area of knowledge networking and science communication.


    Labs Areas of core competence
    National Institute of Science Communication And Information Resources (NISCAIR, New Delhi) Knowledge networking, science communication, science popularization, S&T information management systems and services, IPR, biodiversity and genetic resources, etc.; science editing and production; graphics and printing
    National Institute of Science, Technology And Development Studies (NISTADS, New Delhi) To undertake studies, e.g. IPR & development; Information technology and biotechnology; Innovation policy; Innovation & knowledge society; Technology and integrated assistance to rural artisans; Sustainable development; Science-technology-education valuation studies; History and philosophy of science/Public awareness of science
    Unit for Research and Development of Information Products (URDIP, Pune) Development of Science, Technology and Industry related products in electronic, online and web-based formats
    CSIR Unit for Science Dissemination (CSIR Headquarters, New Delhi) Helps project CSIR Brand Equity through mass media, exhibitions, etc.
    Information Technology Division (CSIR Headquarters, New Delhi) Its mandate is to help make CSIR IT-savvy, utilize IT for efficient and effective management of CSIR, showcase available expertise and knowledge in CSIR system, utilize IT to realize economy of scales in common functions in transparent manner,establish a digital document based decision support system, and serve as a state-of-the -art data centre.

    The various laboratories of CSIR also actively disseminate information on their programmes and accomplishments through annual reports, newsletters, audio-visuals, etc.


    CSIR E-Journals Consortium

    CSIR E- Journals Consortium would provide CSIR S&T personnel electronic access to the world’s latest S&T literature in a cost-effective manner through the consortium approach. As a first step, CSIR entered into agreement with M/s Elsevier Science in 2002  to have access to 18,000 journals. Interestingly, CSIR labs were collectively subscribing 550 journals in print form from M/s Elsevier at a cost of Rs. 7.00 crore per annum in stand-alone manner. But with the availability of e-access, CSIR labs now access about 1400 journals.

    Efforts are on to arrive at agreements with other publishers with a view to providing the CSIR personnel access to about 4500 world-class S&T journals.


    Dissemination of Information to S&T Community

    NISCAIR provides communication links among members of the scientific community engaged in research in India and abroad through publication of 19 scholarly research journals of international repute, covering all the major disciplines of science. Contents list and abstracts of all the periodicals are provided on the NISCAIR website (www.niscair.res.in). The journals published by NISCAIR are:


    1. Journal of Scientific & Industrial Research
    2. Indian Journal of Chemistry, Sec A;
    3. Indian Journal of Chemistry, Sec B;
    4. Indian Journal of Experimental Biology;
    5. Indian Journal of Pure & Applied Physics


    1. Indian Journal of Chemical Technology;
    2. Indian Journal of Engineering & Materials Sciences;
    3. Indian Journal of Radio & Space Physics;
    4. Indian Journal of Biochemistry & Biophysics;
    5. Journal of Intellectual Property Rights;
    6. Natural Product Radiance


    1. Indian Journal of Biotechnology;
    2. Indian Journal of Marine Sciences;
    3. Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge
    4. Indian Journal of Fibre & Textile Research

    Half yearly:

    1. Bhartiya Vaigyanik evam Audyogik Anusandhan Patrika (Hindi)

    Library Sciences:

    1. Annals of Library and Information Studies (Quarterly)

    Abstracting Journals:

    1. Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Abstracts (Bimonthly);
    2. Indian Science Abstracts (Fortnightly)

    R&D Newsletters: The institute disseminates information on the R&D activities and major events and programmes of CSIR labs through CSIR News (English—Fortnightly) and CSIR Samachar (Hindi—Monthly). The newsletters are also available on the institute’s website.

    Information Resources

    Many products and services of NISCAIR are drawn extensively from the rich information resources that have been systematically consolidated and maintained over the years. The information resources are:

    The Wealth of India: An encyclopedic publication describing the plant, animal and mineral resources of India. It is acclaimed as a reference standard for information on raw materials of India, particularly in the view of current global trend to incorporate traditional knowledge systems into the proprietary mainstream.

    Bharat ki Sampada: It is the Hindi version of the Wealth of India.

    Popularization of Science

    Popularization of science among the masses is a major programme of NISCAIR. The institute publishes three well-circulated popular science magazines, Science Reporter (English, monthly), Vigyan Pragati (Hindi, monthly), and Science ki Duniya (Urdu, quarterly).

    Besides, NISCAIR also publishes a number of low-priced popular science books. More than 60 popular science books in English under different series, including CSIR Golden Jubilee Series (25), Sci-Fun Series (7), Q-Series (3), Vistas in Biotechnology Series (10), Foundations of Biotechnology Series (6), Others (9), and the encyclopaedic publication Golden Treasury of Science & Technology have been brought out. Also, 28 books have been brought out in Hindi.

    IT Literacy Programme

    Under the IT Literacy Programme a new series of low-cost, self-explanatory books on Information Technology – the IT Series – has been launched to help generate computer literacy in the country. The following titles have been brought out: The Adventure: A Beginners Guide to Programming; C++ for Beginners; Build your Web Home: An Introduction to HTML Web Page Design; Microsoft Word for Beginners (also in Hindi); Zoom In: A Beginners Guide to MS Power Point (also in Hindi); Web Dot Com: A Tour Guide to the Web, and Visual Basic for the Beginners. Hindi, Bangla, Marathi, Tamil and Punjabi versions of these IT books have also been brought out.

    Establishment of Documentation and Information Centre of the Rajiv Gandhi National Drinking Water Mission

    The Rajiv Gandhi National Drinking Water Mission (Department of Drinking Water, Ministry of Rural Development) is engaged in providing drinking water and sanitation facilities to States and Union Territories of India. At the instance of the Mission, a Documentation and Information Centre was set up for acquiring information resources and provide information on topics related to the Mission to its officials.

    Updation of Database of Intramural R&D Projects in S&T Institutions in India

    A database of Intramural R&D projects has been developed by NISCAIR under the sponsorship of DST. The database provides information on nearly 8000 R&D projects in S&T institutions in the country. The database is now available on CD-ROM and will be accessible online on national network.

    Updation of Directory of S&T Awards

    The updation of the Directory of S&T Awards in India has been sponsored by the National Science and Technology Management Information System (NSTMIS), Department of Science & Technology. The objectives of this project are to: (i) update the database (DSTAI) and keep it current, (ii) widen the coverage of the database, and (iii) bring out CDs of the updated versions of the database.

    INSDOC-KIT Project with the Royal Tropical Institute, The Netherlands

    This project is in force under an MoU between erstwhile INSDOC and the Royal Tropical Institute (Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen, KIT), The Netherlands. NISCAIR contributes bibliographic data to KIT’s TROPAG database. This database is a comprehensive source of information on agricultural development, environmental management, plant and animal production and post-harvest technology in the developing regions of Africa, Asia, the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean.

    Indian Patents in Biotechnology (Sponsored by IFPRI, Washington)

    The project aims to look at the patenting activity in India in the area of Biotechnology. The data from the Gazette of India are culled out for the years starting from 1985 to 2001. The analysis identifies prolific groups from India and abroad who patent in biotechnology and areas of strength.

    SAARC Documentation Centre (SDC)

    The SAARC Documentation Centre (SDC) has been set up at NISCAIR for exchanging S&T information among SAARC nations, and has been functioning since January 1994. Among the various programmes planned by SDC for execution during the next 2-3 years, human resource development in the SAARC region has been accorded top priority. Consequently, SDC has initiated several training programmes in the field of information science and technology.


    Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Information Service (MAPIS): MAPIS provides bibliographic information (current and retrospective) and document copy services on demand to the users. Over a period of four decades, NISCAIR has built up a vast collection of information consisting of bibliographic references on plants and plant products, animals and minerals. The MAPA database is extensively used by a wide variety of user groups comprising researchers and technologists, herbal drug and essential oil companies, traders, students, Ayurvedic institutions and practitioners, farmers, medical/agricultural institutes and doctors. MAPA database containing information since 1989 is also available on CD-ROM.

    Patent Information: Under this, information on medicinal plants covered in patents secured on skin disorders, anticancer, anti-hepatotoxic, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic activities has been compiled. Technical analyses of these patent documents have been published. At present, the database comprises a summary of over 600 plants, with an easy-to-use computer program, with updates on a continuing basis, in such a way as to be helpful to the natural product chemists. The database is comprehensive and highlights areas of current and future interests.

    Bibliometric Services: Under this, bibliometric analysis of the research papers of individual scientists, institutions, nominees of various awards, etc., is carried out. In addition, searches are conducted from Journal Citation Reports for obtaining the impact factors, etc.

    Online Information Retrieval Services: NISCAIR has online access to a large number of international databases available with DIALOG and STN. The databases are searched and comprehensive bibliographies are provided on request.

     Translation Services: Translation services are provided in eight foreign languages, i.e., Chinese, Czech, French, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

    Document Procurement and Supply: NISCAIR provides this service from its own library collection of about eight thousand periodicals, and also by tapping the resources of a number of other S&T libraries in the country by finding out the availability of a given document from its computerized database of National Union Catalogue of Scientific Serials in India (NUCSSI). If the document is not available within the country, NISCAIR has alliances with libraries abroad, and it procures the desired document from the foreign sources.

    Contents, Abstracts and Photocopy Service (CAPS): The objective of this service is to fill the gap created by a sharp decline in the availability of foreign periodicals to Indian S&T community. On an yearly subscription, one can get contents of journals of one’s choice from about 7500 Indian and foreign periodicals pertaining to different disciplines, on paper diskette, or through mail. On browsing the contents, one can place order for abstracts and/or photocopies of full articles. One can get the contents information on diskette either as a text file or as a database.

    Indian Patents Database (INPAT): INPAT is a bibliographic database that provides information on 52,624 patents granted in India during 1975-2002.

    NUCSSI Database: NUCSSI data from January 1993 to July 2001, comprising 44,838 titles and 248,266 holdings pertaining to 480 libraries, are available on CD.


    • Short-term training courses on Herbarium Techniques.
    • Training workshops on technical science writing
    • On-job training to students of courses such as B.I.T., B.E., B.Tech, M.E., M.Tech, M.C.A. and M.Sc. (Computer Science) as part-fulfillment of their courses.
    • Associateship in Information Science: The Institute offers an advanced master’s degree level academic course in documentation and reprography.
    • Short-Term Training Courses: In areas of information technology and computer applications.
    • Attachment Training Programmes: On-the-job training or attachment training programmes for persons requiring specialized training in the field of information science, information management, information technology and related activities.
    • IGNOU Study Centre: NISCAIR has been identified as the Programme Study Centre for the following IGNOU sponsored programmes: (i) Certificate in Computing; (CIC); (ii) Master/Bachelor in Computer Applications (MCA/BCA); (iii) Master/Bachelor in Library and Information Science (MLISc/BLISc). NISCAIR has the responsibility of counselling, imparting practical training, organising seminars, guiding student projects, conducting practical examinations and evaluation of assignments for the above-mentioned programmes.



    Completed Grants in aid Projects

    • Commercialization of Biotechnology in India - Scope for HGT intervention [Sponsored by Technology Information Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC)
    • Indian Patents in Biotechnology [Sponsored by IFPRI, Washington]
    • Delhi Flower Market - A Case for Establishing Wholesale Market [Sponsored by APEDA, Ministry of Commerce, Government of India]
    • Techno-economic study on artisans in unorganized sector [Sponsored by Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), New Delhi]: The Scientific Panel of Agricultural Engineering, ICAR, has adopted the recommendations of the study.
    • Evaluation of design and technology upgradation scheme for handicrafts [Sponsored by Office of Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Ministry of Textiles, Government of India]
    • Environmental statistics and mapping in Delhi: Application of spatial technologies   (Sponsored by Ministry of Environment & Forests, Government of India). The major accomplished activity in this project includes the preparation of draft metadata directory on environmental statistics and mapping. Textural and attribute database on major aspects and geo-referenced base map and various thematic maps for National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi were generated.
    • EU-India cross cultural innovation network project [Sponsored by European Union (EU)]. The main objective was to set up a management framework for effective academic-entrepreneurial networking involving universities and entrepreneurs in the EU and India and to build upon and promote existing models and paradigms of innovation for sustainable transfer of cross cultural knowledge and know how.  The final reports prepared are:
      • Cross cultural model of action research in the dairy sector
      • Cross cultural model of innovative activities at enterprise level – Industrial clusters of SMEs
      • Dhokra brass artifacts from Bankura: Multimedia archiving of technological change in a traditional creative industry
    • Pilot perspective study on restructuring of AICTE funded schemes/projects [Sponsored by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), New Delhi]

    Ongoing Grants in aid Projects

    • Analysis of Indian patenting activity in international and domestic patent system
    • Measures of progress of S&T in India: An analysis of the publication output in science and technology
    • Quality of manpower in knowledge intensive sectors: Cases from drugs and chemicals
    • Aspects of knowledge generating institutions in India – A study of capability, organization and output in sectors of Indian science
    • Development of village/panchayat level integrated spatial database on natural resources and socio-economic parameters using GIS/GPS/RS technologies to help in local area development planning
    • Policy development to support biodiversity within agricultural systems of hilly regions of North and South India
    • Asia Pacific regional focal point of WAITRO

    Completed in-house projects

    • Intellectual property rights information for R&D scientists in CSIR
    • Policies for the promotion of science & technology under NEP
    • Scientific and technical manpower development in northeastern states of India
    • Investigations on the development of systems of innovation at regional level in India
    • Action research on the implementation of industrial upgrading in the conditions of unorganized sector


    • Consultancy services, sponsored research and commissioned studies for national and international agencies, central and local government bodies, industries and other organizations concerned with policy formulation, planning and management of science and technology as well as development issues.
    • Training of scholars in STS
    • Orientation and training programmes for functionaries of science and technology agencies and institutions from India and other developing countries.
    • Providing services in science policy areas and archives of science & technology, science & technology/research & development information based on databases developed in-house.
    • Publications, seminars, conferences and lectures in STS.



    Development of web-based information services: CSIR Software Tools for Research and Design: A large number of software programmes have been developed by CSIR scientists in-house for captive use on research projects. These software packages have utility and are of value to outside customers as well. URDIP is currently working with CSIR scientists to convert these programmes into user-friendly finished packages and will use the Internet infrastructure to market and distribute these software packages. It is also planned to follow ASP Model to provide web-enabled services. Options will also be available for the customers to submit a job and get an output for a fee.

    Content Development and Packaging: URDIP is in the business of generation, distribution and protection of content that can be accessed in digital format. It has the technological capabilities to build databases and web-enable them or convert them into CD-ROM format. URDIP provides a complete package of services to organizations in both the public and private sectors from content development to CD-replication as well as website development.

    Science Technology and Industry Portal: CSIR laboratories have generated a considerable amount of research data in many specialized areas. CSIR, through URDIP, is leveraging the information resources of its laboratories and knowledgebase in specific sectors to develop Science, Technology, Industry and Institution- specific portals with embedded e-commerce applications to provide value-added services over the Internet.

    Technology Advisory Point:CSIR Technology Advisory Point (TAP) is a web-based science and technology information service that has been designed to save time and money especially for small and medium enterprises. It is being developed as a gateway to scientific knowledge that usually remains in the ‘head’ of a scientist/researcher/expert. This service would bring the knowledge of CSIR's 6000 highly qualified scientists to the desktop of the user. This service is in a pilot testing phase and currently covers chemicals, food and leather technology areas. It will be available to the registered users of TAP through the Internet.

    Information Products

    Health Heritage:Health Heritage is a database developed by URDIP which incorporates both traditional knowledge from Sanskrit classics referred to by practitioners of Indian systems of medicine and modern information made available through systematic scientific research, during the past forty years, on medicinal plants used in Ayurveda. The data summarizes the chemical studies of plants and biological evaluation of total extracts and fractions thereof. It also lists all the pharmacological, biological and clinical work done on the pure constituents obtained from plants and gives the complete structures of new substances isolated. Full texts of patents currently granted by US and Indian Patent offices on traditional medicinal plants have also been included

    Database of CSIR patents:Patestate is a full-text database of Indian and Foreign patents granted to CSIR. The database summarizes the patented inventions and describes the claims made in each individual patent document. Full images of complete patent specifications have been included. A search engine has been incorporated for finding, exploring, analyzing and tracking the patents and related information. In order to facilitate the process of licensing and help laboratories to leverage full value of their intellectual property, the abstracts of all the patents have been moved to an independent website (www.patestate.com). The patents granted during the period 1986 to 1995 are currently available on a set of two CD-ROMs. Patestate is the result of a collaborative effort between Intellectual Property Management Division of CSIR, Patent Inspection Centre at NCL Library and URDIP.

    Interactive CD on pollution technology:URDIP is engaged in building up a database of commercially exploitable technologies available for licensing in emerging areas of science like biotechnology, energy, environment, health care, materials, etc., for the benefit of entrepreneurs. A database on Pollution Control Technologies available from world over has been compiled. The industries covered include dyestuffs, textile processing, pesticides, drugs, pulp and paper, leather, refineries and petrochemicals, fermentation, metal treatment, fertilizers, man-made fibres and food processing. The database has details of more than 500 technologies.

    CSIR’s Rural Technologies:URDIP is engaged in building up a database of commercially exploitable technologies available for licensing in emerging areas of science like biotechnology, energy, environment, health care, materials, etc., for the benefit of entrepreneurs.


    URDIP has developed core capabilities in database design, setting up and maintenance of web sites and portals. URDIP also has skills in the area of multimedia and visualization techniques. It has set up an IT Learning Center, and plans to impart training in the database and web technologies.

    Indexing the Route Ahead

    The coming years will see the CSIR’s S&T information laboratories becoming more IT- savvy, developing S&T information products for the growth of various socio-economic sectors and turning India into a knowledge society.

    Making innovative use of the modern IT tools, NISCAIR will continue to focus on knowledge networking, science communication, science popularization, S&T information management systems and services, IPR, biodiversity and genetic resources, etc. It plans to undertake IT-related R&D on science communication and lay emphasis on projects pertaining to IPR, e-education, e-commerce, etc.