This paper reviews the evolution of science and technology policy in India and Korea over the past fifty years in order to draw relevant lessons for India. In both countries, policies, strategies and structures of science and technology evolved under a planned development approach. However, while Korea created a strong national innovation system and acquired significant technological capabilities, policies in India failed to evolve an appropriate balance between critical ingredients of the innovation system, which weakened its performance and hence, resulted in poor R&D performance of firms. The paper recommends a more focussed but multi-dimensional integrated approach to create technological dynamism within the country. It highlights the importance, in the changing global scenario, of replacing the concept of science and technology policy by an ‘innovation policy’ which aims at establishing and strengthening the techno-economic network.