Guwahati: Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati recently entered into various agreements with academia and industry to foster academic and research activities and to enhance its global outreach and strengthen its existing international collaborations.
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many academic and research activities being disturbed worldwide. However, despite the pandemic, the Institute continued to connect with academia and industry to promote collaborations ranging from student and faculty exchange, joint research projects, and student internships. The Institute also continued to connect with its existing global partner institutions to ensure continued collaborations and strengthen relations with existing international partners.
Speaking about the initiatives behind these collaborations, Prof. T.G. Sitharam, Director, IIT Guwahati, said, “IIT Guwahati actively engages in collaborations with international and national academics, research institutes/organisations and industry. IIT Guwahati has already initiated international collaborations with countries such as Japan, Philippines, Malaysia, Australia, USA, Canada, Taiwan, South Korea, Bhutan, Iceland and several European countries. Such collaborations will create new opportunities for the faculty and students for enhancement of knowledge, performing cutting edge research and development, internships, joint programmes, invite visiting faculty and students, enhancing professional skills and networking opportunities”.
IIT Guwahati signed an agreement with the National Institute for Material Sciences (NIMS), Japan, on 24th July 2020. The agreement is on an International Cooperative Graduate Programme which will provide joint doctoral research guidance to PhD students of IIT Guwahati at NIMS, Japan. The programme will provide excellent exposure to the students of IIT Guwahati for the duration of 6 months to 12 months and provide them access to the laboratories and facilities at NIMS, Japan. The agreement was signed by Prof. T.G. Sitharam, Director, IIT Guwahati, and Kazuhito Hashimoto, President of NIMS, Japan.
Another important collaborative agreement IIT Guwahati had undertaken is the signing of the Strategic Collaboration Agreement with NXP India Private Limited to facilitate the proliferation of VLSI Design & Embedded Systems knowledge in IIT Guwahati and NXP by undertaking research projects with the involvement of the faculty and students from the Institute along with NXP employees. The agreement also encourages jointly guided doctoral research with part of the work done using NXP eco-system. In addition, enabling IIT Guwhati M.Tech/B.Tech students to get exposure to practical R&D scenario in semiconductor industry through collaborative M.Tech/B.Tech projects guided jointly by IIT Guwahati faculty and NXP personnel. The agreement was signed between Prof. T. G. Sitharam, Director, IIT Guwahati, and Mr. Sanjay Gupta, Vice President & India Country Manager, NXP Semiconductors on 31st August 2020 for a period of 5 years.
Furthermore, IIT Guwahati also entered into agreements with the following international education institutions for a period of 5 years:
1. Mariano Marcos State University, Philippines
2. Tripartite agreement with Nova University Lisbon and NOVA.ID.FCT
3. UiT, The Arctic University of Norway
4. Edith Cowan University, Australia
The agreements focus on collaborative research activities, exchange and internship programmes for undergraduate and graduate students and academic staff. The agreements have been signed on behalf of IIT Guwahati by Prof. T. G. Sitharam as the Director, Prof. Rakhi Chaturvedi as Institutional Coordinator and by the concerned Faculty Coordinators.
IIT Guwahati also signed an Erasmus+ Agreement with the University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland. Erasmus+ is the European Union programme for education, training, youth and sport with partner institutions. It encourages the mobility of students, staff, youth workers, and young people. Organisations can arrange to send or receive students and staff to or from participating countries, as well as organise teaching, training, learning activities. Under Erasmus+ programme, partners aim to modernise education, training and youth work across Europe. It is open to education, training, youth and sports organisations across all sectors of lifelong learning, including school education, further and higher education, adult education and the youth sector. Prof. T. G. Sitharam, Director, IIT Guwahati, and Nanna Teitsdottir, Erasmus + Coordinator, Project Manager, on 18th August 2020 for a period of 3 years.
IIT Guwahati has received many applications from international students applying for its Masters and PhD programmes. Amidst this pandemic, IIT Guwahati received and processed 86 international applications through various agencies and institutions, such as the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) under Ministry of External Affairs, India; ASEAN Countries; Study in India programme of Ministry of Education; TWAS-DBT; Ministry of Education, Ethiopia; and other self-sponsored applicants for the Master’s and PhD programme in various departments. The Institute has issued Admission Offer Letters to 18 foreign students during this period for admission to the 2020 session.
All the agreements are to develop and nurture collaborative academic and research relationships with partner institutions, which enables researchers to access additional, often specific, expertise, gain new perspectives on research and build relationships with others in the field.