“Fragile 5” to “Top 5”


India recorded a rapid rise across various global parameters and universal benchmarks in the last ten years.


GS-03 (Growth and Development, Economy)

Key highlights:

  • Global Innovation Index: India has emerged as the fifth largest economy and the 3rd largest Startup Ecosystem and has jumped 41 places in ten years.
    • India had ranked 81 in 2014 and currently the nation stands at 40 in the world.
  • India has the 3rd largest Startup Ecosystem globally and is home to the fastest-growing unicorns.
    • From just over 350 StartUps in the year 2014,India grew over 300 times and currently India has over 1,30,000 StartUps, besides more than 110 Unicorns.
  • The world today hails India’s leadership as it has shown excellence in tackling Climate Change, its efforts towards Green Energy and Zero Emission and the initiative of launching the Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA) during the historic G20 Summit in New Delhi.
  • The space reforms implemented have brought transparency to India’s space programs. With the liberalization of the space sector, the general public has had the opportunity to witness significant space events such as the launches of Chandrayaan-3 and Aditya.

Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA):

  • The Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA) was launched during India’s G20 presidency.
  • It aims to expedite the global adoption of biofuels by bringing together major producers and consumers like the US, Brazil and India.
  • With 19 countries and 12 international organizations already on board, the alliance seeks to enhance global biofuels trade for a more sustainable future.

Highlights from Global Innovation Index:

  • India’s remarkable climb in the Global Innovation Index (GII) from 81st position in 2015 to 40th position in 2023 underscores its significant growth in innovation over the past eight years.
  • Switzerland has retained its rank 1 for the 13th year.
  • India’s top position among 37 lower-middle-income countries and leading position among 10 economies in Central and South America highlights its robust innovation landscape, supported by key indicators like ICT services exports, venture capital received, and graduates in science and engineering.
  • It also highlights the need for improvement in areas such as infrastructure, business sophistication, and institutions as identified by NITI Aayog.
  • India’s progress in innovation is attributed to its abundant knowledge capital, thriving startup ecosystem, and efforts from both public and private research organizations.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic emphasized the importance of innovation in addressing challenges, aligning with India’s vision of Atma Nirbhar Bharat (Self-reliant India).

Facts for Prelims:

  • Biofuel:
    • Any hydrocarbon fuel that is produced from an organic matter (living or once living material) in a short period of time (days, weeks, or even months) is considered a biofuel.
    • Biofuels can be liquid, solid, or gaseous, and are produced from biomass, which is a general term for plant materials.
    • They emit less greenhouse gases than fossil fuels.