By Max Clarke
The second round of a UK-Indian research partnership is being launched in order to foster innovation and business within the two countries.
The £5 million a year UK India Research and Education Initiative (UKIERI) deal has been agreed for 5 years and will focus of 4 key strands: Leadership, Innovation, Skills and mobility.
“This is such an important initiative and is unique around the world,” said the British Council’s India Director, Roy Lynes, “as it brings together so many different institutions in both countries to work together. It delivers benefits that will improve our education systems, will build lasting relationships and through those partnerships tackle global challenges. We are proud to be part of such a significant programme”
The UK and Indian governments are also anticipating that business will invest in UKIERI; Tata Consultancy Services have agreed to sponsor 30 ‘fellows’, where UK students will have the opportunity to work at Tata in India this summer before coming back to share their experience in UK secondary schools.
UK Science Minister, David Willetts, is particularly excited by the strength of the partnership. Said Willets:
“UKIERI is already a success. In its first five years, it created some 500 new partnerships between schools, colleges, universities and research institutions in our countries. This collaboration has allowed us to share understanding of each other’s culture, and maximise the impact and success of research projects.
“This new phase is particularly exciting. As of this week we are inviting proposals for collaborations in the areas of building innovation partnerships, skills development and creating a new generation of education professionals.
“I was staggered when I first learned that India plans to create 40 million new university places, and train 500 million people in vocational skills over the next 12 years. The systemic changes that UKIERI will bring about can help to make that a reality.”
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