IIT Council, Association of American Universities ink pact to set up Indo-US Global Challenges Institute

The Council of Indian Institute of Technology, or the IIT Council, and the Association of American Universities (AAU) Saturday signed an MOU (memorandum of understanding) to establish the Indo-US Global Challenges Institute. The IIT Council signed the agreement on behalf of all the higher educational institutes in India. Although the announcement was made in a joint statement following a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden ahead of the G20 Summit in New Delhi Saturday, the intent to set up the institute was announced during PM Modi’s US visit in June this year.

The Indo-US Global Challenges Institute will address challenges –including economic, environmental, and technological – that might affect the ‘security, prosperity and stability’ of both countries.

The organization will seek to promote research collaborations, create knowledge-sharing platforms, work towards resource mobilization, and ensure inclusive growth of research enterprise, an official statement said.

The institute, as per the official statement, will be a virtual network of partner universities and provide a platform to address strategic research programs requiring interdisciplinary solutions in critical and emerging technologies including sustainable energy and agriculture, health and pandemic preparedness, semiconductor technology and manufacturing, advanced materials, telecommunications, artificial intelligence (AI) and quantum science.

The agreement was signed by Professor Barbara Snyder, President of AAU, and Professor Abhay Karandikar on behalf of the IIT Council.

Another collaborative institutional partnership, the statement added, has been formalized between the New York University Tandon School of Engineering and IIT Kanpur. As part of the partnership, an advanced research center in critical and emerging technologies will be launched.

Multi-institutional joint research centers involving the State University of New York at Buffalo and IIT Delhi, Kanpur, Jodhpur, and BHU are also being established in the areas of critical and emerging technologies, the statement added.

Saying that these partnerships between the parties are also in line with the priority set by the G20 Education Working Group under the Indian presidency, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said: “This is a sign of the growing relationship between India and the United States in education, research, and skill development.”

Image courtesy of thesatimes

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