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Sterling Group keen on ties with Indian varsities


Indian academics and students could contribute a lot to research in U.K. universities.

“Engineering is fun and U.K. universities are among the best in engineering education” was the message that representatives of the Sterling Group brought to India when they visited the country last week.

Richard H. Scott, professor, School of Engineering, Durham University, who led the delegates from the group of engineering departments of 22 premier universities in the United Kingdom, said that the group was keen to further academic ties with engineering departments of the top universities in India.

“We have visited various private engineering colleges, the Indian Institutes of Technology in Delhi and Chennai and have talked to many professors and academics at the different institutions. Both sides want to have strong academic ties and we are hoping to take this forward in the coming years,” he said.

Trevor Page, a member of the delegation and professor at Newcastle University, said that the group was looking at increased interactions in many new avenues including safety engineering and environmental engineering, apart from the more common disciplines like Information Technology, Computer Science and Civil Engineering.

“These new emerging disciplines need lots of inter-disciplinary research and students need backgrounds in different fields to make meaningful contributions. Many universities in the U.K. are doing outstanding research in these areas and we think Indian academics and students could contribute a lot to it,” he said.

Asoke K. Nandi, professor, University of Liverpool, said that the new immigration laws actually made it easier for students to find jobs after completing their studies. The Post-Study Work Experience visas allowed two years’ stay on a point-based system. He also added that many students completed their Ph.D requirements in three-and-a-half years unlike in many other places and this made the U.K. university system more attractive.

The British Council of India facilitated the visits of the delegates to various colleges in India and their interaction with the academics. A representative from the Council said that they were planning to make the two-way interaction of academics of both countries a more routine affair.

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