India’s state of Karnataka is currently looking at a proposal to establish a “Centre for International Strategic Academic Collaboration” which would actively generate linkages with international universities and students.
The proposal is the brainchild of Mr. Nanjundaiya Ramesh Kumar (pictured below), holder of two Masters’ degrees – Industrial Economics from Brussels University, Brussels, Belgium and in Business Administration from Boston University, Boston, US. He is an experienced international banker and advisor to Governments as well as a tireless promoter of Karnataka as a provider of quality university education – the state has 55 universities.
INTO INDIA recently reported on an initiative of RMIT University in Melbourne to create a collaborative post graduate research model with India – universities and research institutes.
The Karnataka “Centre for International Strategic Academic Collaboration” would involve all 55 Universities (faculty, students and other stakeholders) in Karnataka and the professional community of learners internationally to achieve sharing of best and tested education practices via a mutually beneficial and collaborative international partnership.
The Centre would ensure that arrangements are in place at the University level for the effective management of overseas strategic academic collaborations, including procedures for the maintenance of academic standards and the assurance and enhancement of the student learning experience.
It would reach out to International Deans, College International Leads and College International Business Development Managers and key overseas University Services on the development and management of academic collaborations.
The Government of India since 2016 has been encouraging collaboration between Indian and overseas Universities.
Centrally this initiative has the full support of the Ministry of Human Resource Development and all States in India have been advised to look into this on priority basis.
Recommended areas of collaboration include Art and Design, Health, Higher Education, Creative writing & poetry, Literary criticism & English language, Sociology and Social Policy, Aviation, Transport and advanced Communication. Research Collaborations would be sought in Sensing & Imaging, Electrochemistry, graphene and carbon nanotubes, Mechanical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering and Sustainable Ecology and environment protection studies.
One of the suggestion of the proposed Centre will be to Create ‘Education Hubs‘ or Centres of Excellences (CoEs) strategically in Bengaluru and allow reputable overseas institutions and universities to establish a presence in India, through joint initiatives (with any local university in Karnataka) in curriculum design and delivery, branch campuses, train the trainer initiatives and joint research and scholarly activities that could help build capacity, reduce the imbalance in student mobility and attract significant export earnings.
Karnataka is already strong in higher education – this proposal could see the state become a global higher education powerhouse and magnet.
This is definitely something the Australian Government and Australian universities should be actively looking at as pathways to collaboration in India become more open.