UKIERI-funded Higher Education Leadership Development Programme for Administrators to train 300 participants across Indian HEIs


– MHRD and British Council announce capacity building programme as part of Phase 3 of UKIERI programme

– Leadership development programme delivered by UGC and Advance HE aligned to focus areas outlined in NEP 2019

– First batch of 300 participants to be successfully trained by UK experts Advance HE by June 2020


New Delhi: The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and the British Council, today announced the launch of the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI)-funded Higher Education Leadership Development Programme for Administrators.


The training for 300 participants is aimed at capacity building for senior leaders, mid-senior level functionaries and academic faculty across Indian higher education institutes (HEIs). It will be delivered by University Grants Commission (UGC) with globally recognised institutional expertise and leadership excellence from the UK.


Since 2006, UKIERI has been driving internationalisation in higher education sectors of India and the UK by focusing on three key aspects: institutional partnerships (for research and academics), student mobility, and leadership development (for academic leaders). These aspects complement the focus areas of the National Education Policy i.e. internationalisation of Indian higher education sector to prepare globally ready professionals and institutions and improving the ranking and quality of education governance of Indian HEIs in global university rankings.


Currently in Phase 3, the programme has already successfully delivered 1,057 institutional partnerships, 25,000 academic exchanges and 2,000 research publications as part of its first two phases (2006-2016). Phase 3 of UKIERI focuses on three areas: capacity building and leadership development, research innovation and partnerships and skill development in higher education.


Speaking at the launch, Ramesh Pokhriyal, Minister of Human Resource Development, said, “The Higher Education Leadership Development Programme for Administrators will be a step change towards institutional reforms in Higher Education in line with the Indian government’s commitment to improve the quality of education being imparted in the universities. The programme will enable participants with a more global outlook which in turn supports the increasing collaboration between higher education systems both Indian and UK governments would like to see in the future.”

He added, “UKIERI has a rich legacy of enabling these connections to flourish over the last 14 years. It has undoubtedly helped enhance education and research work between our two countries and we value the partnership with the UK that has been built thanks to the scheme. We are committed to carry forward the good work of UKIERI and further deepen this partnership in the future. UK is a trusted education partner for the Government of India with a strong reputation for Higher Education globally. I’m pleased they are involved in this programme which will serve as a stimulant for the administrators to improve their performance and capabilities in ways which will enhance global reputation of universities in India.”


  1. Train the academic administrators to enable them to bring about systemic changes with renewed approaches, capacity, tools and skills in the higher education institutions
  2. Identify and train potential future LDP trainers in order to provide a framework for dissemination and cascading of leadership training to other HEIs
  3. Create and strengthen sustainable relationship between UK and Indian Higher Education Institutions and utilize UK’s expertise in the field of Higher Education Administration and leadership

UGC-driven Higher Education Leadership Development Programme for Administrators has been designed to bring about a step change in institutional reforms in the education system in India and will aim to inculcate leadership skills in academic administrators across universities in India offering them a more global outlook, exposure to better career progression and higher quality teaching.


The programme will provide 300 participating leaders at the level of Joint/Deputy/ Assistant Registrar and Registrar in Indian Universities with improved leadership capacity in terms of knowledge, competencies, skills and behaviours. Following a cascade model to amplify impact, the programme will identify and prepare 30 potential Future Leadership Development programme trainers to train others. It also aims to create a network of HEI stakeholders and partners with raised awareness and engagement with key HE leadership issues. The training will be impacted through 02 workshops of one-week duration each at different locations in India. Post training online support and evaluation to implement the learning


UKIERI has brought on board, Advanced HE, a UK-based not-for-profit institution, specialising in governance and leadership development of higher education to deliver the training. Advance HE has worked to support nationally-driven HE sector change initiatives across the world including recently in Ukraine, Myanmar and Uzbekistan.


Said, Dr. D.P. Singh, Chairman, University Grants Commission, “UGC is pleased to associate with Advance HE, our training partner who are known for bettering Higher Education initiatives across the globe. With an astute international partner like the Advance HE, we plan to impart top-notch leadership and management skills to vice-chancellors, mid-senior level functionaries and academic administrators across HEIs in India. We are hopeful that this partnership will catalyse a more substantial transformation through which more and more HEIs will find their names on the top in global university ranking in the future.”


Speaking on the roll-out of the leadership development programme, Barbara Wickham, OBE, Director, India, British Council, said, “Over 14 years the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI) has worked to realise the knowledge ambitions of both countries. We thank the MHRD for recognising the importance of professional development and capacity building for senior academic staff in India and I hope the selected participants will appreciate the inputs they get from the training by UGC and Advance HE. I look forward to the benefits the programme will bring to its participants and hope it will provide them insights into the benefits of internationalization in higher education.”

Andy Shenstone, Director of Business Development and Delivery at Advance HE said, “We are delighted to support the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI) in delivering this nationally important programme to strengthen leadership across the Indian Higher Education (HE) sector. Helping the HE sector in India shape its own future and develop global links is paramount. We look forward to working closely with our partners at the Ministry of Human Resource Development, the British Council and University Grants Commission to ensure effective delivery of this HE Leadership Development Programme for Administrators.”

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