Internationalisation of India’s Higher Education

by Jul 26, 2023Education0 comments

India’s IITs are setting a brand new template for leveraging the power of knowledge and unfolding a new chapter in the internationalization of India’s education


Two important international agreements this month have made every Indian proud. It is a recognition of the worth of Indian education that our IITs will have no presence in foreign countries. It also signifies India’s commitment under Prime Minister Narendra Modi that India will share its expertise with fellow developing countries.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for setting up of campus of IIT Madras in Zanzibar On July 6, – Tanzania was signed today between the Ministry of Education (MoE), Govt. of India, IIT Madras, and Ministry of Education and Vocational Training (MoEVT) Zanzibar- Tanzania.

This is the first ever IIT campus to be set up outside the country in Tanzania. It is reflective of the longstanding relationship between India and Tanzania and a reminder of the focus India places on setting up people-to-people bonding across Africa and the Global South.

Shri Dharmendra Pradhan (Union Minister for Education and Skill Development & Entrepreneurship) said that MoU signing for setting up the IIT Madras- Zanzibar campus seems like a historic beginning towards the internationalization of higher education. He further said that the initiative is shaping Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s dream to strengthen South-South cooperation as well as forge stronger people-to-people ties with Africa.

National Education Policy 2020 is laying the way for making knowledge a key feature of bilateral relations as well as for advancing global good, he added.

It may be noted that National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 focuses on Internationalization and recommends that “High performing Indian universities will be encouraged to set up campuses in other countries”.

Identifying the strategic partnership between Tanzania and India, the relationship of educational partnership has been made by signing the document which provides the outline for the Parties to detail the setting up of the proposed campus of IIT Madras in Zanzibar- Tanzania, with plans to launch programs in Oct 2023.

This inimitable partnership will bring the top-ranked educational expertise of IIT Madras to a prime destination in Africa and serve the vital current needs of the region. The academic programs, curricula, student selection aspects, and pedagogical details will be by IIT Madras, whereas the government of Zanzibar-Tanzania will meet the capital and operating expenditure. IIT Madras degrees will be awarded to the students enrolled in this campus.

The advanced interdisciplinary degrees are expected to attract a diverse group and include students from Tanzania and other countries. Indian students are also eligible to apply to these programs.

The establishment of the IIT Campus shall also grow India’s reputation globally and its diplomatic relationships and spread the international footprint of IIT Madras. It is also likely to increase the quality of IIT Madras education and research further, due to student and faculty diversity from the international campus. It will further do extreme research collaborations with other top-ranked academic institutions worldwide.

IIT campus in Zanzibar, Tanzania is envisioned as a world-class higher education and research institution with a broader mission to develop expertise in response to emerging global requirements, deepen ties between the nations, and help research and innovation in the region. It will help grow the world of the aspirational qualities of Indian higher education and innovation.

The second Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on July 15 between the Ministry of Education and Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK), and the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi) to establish the 1st campus of IIT Delhi in Abu Dhabi.

The MoU reflects the shared vision of both nations to prioritize educational excellence, complementing the ongoing UAE-India Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), innovation, knowledge exchange, and investments in human capital as the foundations for future prosperity and enablers of long-term economic growth and sustainable development.

An example of New India’s innovation and expertise, the IIT Delhi campus in UAE will be very important for India-UAE friendship, it is said.

Her Excellency Ms. Sara Musallam, Minister of State for Early Education, Chairman of the Federal Agency of Early Education, and Chairman of ADEK, views the MoU as representing an essential step in Abu Dhabi’s commitment to force-start a world-class education system that serves the national development goals and priorities.

“The execution of this MoU marks a milestone in our plans towards actualizing a globally competitive education ecosystem. In line with our national strategy, this MoU reflects our commitment to providing world-class educational experiences. We anticipate that the IIT Delhi – Abu Dhabi partnership will support our transition towards fostering an environment that nurtures innovation and accelerates high-level research”, she added.

IIT Delhi – Abu Dhabi will complement the academic, research and innovation ecosystem in Abu Dhabi through collaboration with key players such as Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence, Khalifa University, New York University Abu Dhabi, Technology Innovation Institute, and Hub71 to offer complimentary programs, conduct cutting edge research, and advance the local startup ecosystem.

The IIT Delhi – Abu Dhabi campus is expected to launch its academic programs in 2024 and a host of bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. programs, and operate research centers related to sustainable energy and climate studies, as well as computing and data sciences.

IIT Delhi – Abu Dhabi is expected to offer a diverse range of programs covering Energy and Sustainability, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Science and Engineering, Mathematics and Computing and other disciplines of engineering, sciences, and humanities.

IIT Delhi – Abu Dhabi graduates will join an illustrious alumni network of graduates from 23 campuses across India.

IIT Delhi ranked among the world’s top 50 institutions for engineering and technology, with outstanding credentials. in the 2022 QS World University Rankings, it also scored a top 30 rank for global employability. IIT Delhi has been a frontline contributor to India’s R&D ecosystem in sectors ranging from healthcare, defense, and rural development, to transportation, IT, and software.

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