UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Important Questions for GS Paper III (Science & Technology and Environment Section)

UPSC: The GS III of the UPSC Mains Exam includes Agriculture, Economics, Environment, Science & Technology, Disaster Management, and Internal Security sections.  In this article, you can access important questions from Science & Technology and Environment Section for answer writing practice.

Created On: Nov 27, 2020 15:56 IST
Modified On: Nov 27, 2020 15:56 IST
UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Important Questions for GS Paper III (Science & Technology and Environment Section)
UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Important Questions for GS Paper III (Science & Technology and Environment Section)

UPSC: The UPSC Mains syllabus comprises four GS Papers, Essay, and two Optional papers. All the mains papers are descriptive in nature. GS III paper is divided into four sections. It is necessary for aspirants to prepare each section dedicatedly as the question paper covers questions from each topic. Solving previous years’ papers can prove to be of great help as they will help the aspirants to analyze the pattern as well as the type of questions asked in the paper from each section. For the aspirants’ convenience, we have compiled the questions from International Relations and Social Justice sections from the past 5 years’ previous years’ papers. It is advised that the aspirants should attempt the questions as per the word limit prescribed by UPSC. 

Also Read: Tips for Writing Better Answers in UPSC IAS Mains 2020

UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Important Questions for GS III Science & Technology Section


Ques 1 What is India’s plan to have its own space station and how will it benefit our space programme?

Ques 2 How can biotechnology help to improve the living standards of farmers?

Ques 3 Give an account of the growth and development of nuclear science and technology in India. What is the advantage of a fast breeder reactor programme in India?

Ques 4 How is the Government of India protecting traditional knowledge of medicine from patenting by pharmaceutical companies?


Ques 1 Discuss the work of ‘Bose-Einstein Statistics’ done by Prof. Satyendra Nath Bose and show how it revolutionized the field of Physics.

Ques 2 Why is there so much activity in the field of biotechnology in our country? How has this activity benefitted the field of biopharma?

Ques 3 With growing energy needs should India keep on expanding its nuclear energy programme? Discuss the facts and fears associated with nuclear energy.


Ques 1 Stem cell therapy is gaining popularity in India to treat a wide variety of medical conditions including leukaemia, Thalassemia, damaged cornea and several burns. Describe briefly what stem cell therapy is and what advantages it has over other treatments?

Ques 2 India has achieved remarkable successes in unmanned space missions including the Chandrayaan and Mars Orbiter Mission, but has not ventured into manned space missions, both in terms of technology and logistics? Explain critically


Ques 1 What is allelopathy? Discuss its role in major cropping systems of irrigated agriculture.

Ques 2 Discuss India’s achievements in the field of Space Science and Technology. How the application of this technology has helped India in its socio-economic development?

Ques 3 Why is nanotechnology one of the key technologies of the 21st century? Describe the salient features of Indian Government’s Mission on Nanoscience and Technology and the scope of its application in the development process of the country.


Ques 1 How can the ‘Digital India’ programme help farmers to improve farm productivity and income? What steps has the Government taken in this regards?

Ques 2 To what factors can the recent dramatic fall in equipment costs and tariff of solar energy be attributed? What implications does the trend have for the thermal power producers and the related industry?

Ques 3 What do you understand by ‘Standard Positioning Systems’ and ‘Protection Positioning Systems’ in the GPS era? Discuss the advantages India perceives from its ambitious IRNSS programme employing just seven satellites.

Ques 4 What are the areas of prohibitive labour that can be sustainably managed by robots? Discuss the initiatives that can propel research in premier research institutes for substantive and gainful innovation.

Ques 5 Discuss the advantage and security implications of cloud hosting of servers vis-a-vis in-house machine-based hosting for government businesses.

Ques 6 India’s Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) which has a database containing formatted information on more than 2 million medicinal formulations is proving a powerful weapon in the country’s fight against erroneous patents. Discuss the pros and cons of making this database publicly available under open-source licensing.

Also Check: Strategy to Prepare GS Paper III (Economics, Environment & Technology)

UPSC IAS Mains 2020: Important Questions for GS III Environment Section


Ques 1 Coastal sand mining, whether legal or illegal, poses one of the biggest threats to our environment. Analyze the impact of sand mining along the Indians coasts, citing specific examples.

Ques 2 Define the concept of carrying capacity of an ecosystem as relevant to an environment. Explain how understanding this concept is vital while planning for the sustainable development of a region.


Ques 1 What are the impediments in disposing of the huge quantities of discarded solid wastes which are continuously being generated? How do we remove safely the toxic wastes that have been accumulating in our habitable environment?

Ques 2 What is a wetland? Explain the Ramsar concept of ‘wise use’ in the context of wetland conservation. Cite two examples of Ramsar sites from India.

Ques 3 Sikkim is the first ‘Organic State’ in India. What are the ecological and economical benefits of an Organic State?

Ques 4 How does biodiversity vary in India? How is the Biological Diversity Act,2002 helpful in the conservation of flora and fauna?


Ques 1 Not many years ago, river linking was a concept but it is becoming a reality in the country. Discuss the advantages of river linking and its possible impact on the environment.

Ques 2 ‘Climate Change’ is a global problem. How will India be affected by climate change? How Himalayan and coastal states of India will be affected by climate change?


Ques 1 Give an account of the current status and the targets to be achieved pertaining to renewable energy sources in the country. Discuss in brief the importance of the National Programme on Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs).

Ques 2 Rehabilitation of human settlements is one of the important environmental impacts which always attracts controversy while planning major projects. Discuss the measures suggested for mitigation of this impact while proposing major developmental projects.

Ques 3 The frequency of urban floods due to high-intensity rainfall is increasing over the years. Discussing the reasons for urban floods, highlight the mechanisms for preparedness to reduce the risk during such events.


Ques 1 The Namami Gange and National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) programmes and causes of mixed results from the previous schemes. What quantum leaps can help preserve the river Ganga better than incremental inputs?

Candidates need to ambitiously follow their study time table and practice writing answers on alternate days. This will help them in keeping the track of their progress. We wholeheartedly hope for your success in the UPSC IAS Mains exams with the desired marks and rank.

Also Check: Important Questions for GS III (Economics & Agriculture Section)