The Australian State of Victoria is leading the way in establishing exciting research and development partnerships with Indian institutions through research collaborations.
The partnerships between India’s IITs, TERI and IISc and Victoria-based Monash, Deakin, Swinburne and Melbourne's universities reinforce the State’s aim of being a valuable knowledge partner to India.
Victorian Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula said Victoria deeply values its relationship with India and that these research partnerships are strengthening those ties.
“Victorian universities are world leaders in many research fields, and the Victorian Government is excited to partner with leading Indian institutions to drive innovation in both regions – fostering an even closer relationship with the Indian research sector.”
Victoria is home to a vibrant university sector, with six of its universities ranked in the top 500 of the 2018 QS University Rankings. Two of them, The University of Melbourne and Monash University, are in the top 100. The State also hosts six major research precincts dedicated to biomedical, agricultural and biosciences, advanced manufacturing and aerospace technology, manufacturing and materials respectively.
Details of some of the significant research partnerships between Victoria and India
IITB - Monash Research Academy
The IITB-Monash Research Academy is a decade-long joint venture between the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay and Monash University. The Academy offers an industry facing a joint PhD program where students spend up to one year at Monash University and receive a dual badge PhD degree. The Academy partners with several leading corporations in India and Australia.
CEO of IITB Monash Research Academy Professor Murali Sastry said, "the Academy’s industry-centric PhD model has been well received by our industry partners. It exposes our students to problems that need to be solved as opposed to conventional problems. It addresses an important employability gap in the market".
Deakin India Research Initiative (DIRI)
The Deakin India Research Initiative (DIRI) aims to develop India’s research capacity and bridge the gap between academia and industry. Launched in 2009, DIRI offers Indian students, academics and professionals the opportunity to pursue a PhD in India while working with Deakin researchers through co-supervised doctoral programs. Under this model, research projects are identified together with Indian partner companies or institutes and PhD candidates are enrolled with Deakin University. The research is undertaken in the labs of the partner company or institute.
About the partnership, Ms Ravneet Pawha, Deakin University Deputy Vice President (Global) and CEO (South Asia), said, “Deakin has committed over A$10 million to research in India through DIRI, which is in keeping with our ethos of giving back to the communities we serve ”.
Swinburne – IIT Programs
Swinburne University was the first Australian university to establish a joint PhD program with IIT Madras. In 2018 Swinburne and IIT Madras set up a jointly funded Centre for Creation of Enterprise Eco-system linking research, innovation and commercialisation of the two institutions.
IIT Hyderabad is Swinburne’s major research partner and every year, 20 PhD students are selected for partnered PhD program, where the students spend one year at Swinburne Melbourne. Currently, there are 30 students under this program and 20 are under the selection and enrolment process for 2019.
Commenting on Swinburne’s relationship with India Professor Ajay Kapoor, Swinburne’s Pro Vice-Chancellor (International Research Engagement) said, “India is Swinburne’s major research partner. We have strong links with the top level IITs and other institutions. We want to grow the relationships wider and deeper”.
Melbourne-India Postgraduate Program
This is a partnership between The University of Melbourne with various Indian Institutes of Technology, like IIT-Kanpur, IIT-Kharagpur, IIT-Madras, and the Indian Institute of Science Bangalore on co-supervised PhD programs. There are about 50 PhD students currently in the program.
Speaking about the partnership, Deputy Director of the Melbourne-India Postgraduate Program Professor Muthupandian Ashokkumar said, “the University of Melbourne is committed to excellence and supporting the investigation, dissemination and application of research which addresses some of the most pressing global problems”.