India, US announce eight educational partnerships

In a milestone in the educational partnership between India and the United States, eight institutional partnership projects, four each led by either country, were announced for the first Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative awards. 

The goal of the initiative is to further strengthen, through faculty exchanges, joint research, and other collaboration, partnerships between American and Indian institutions of higher education in priority fields, including food security, climate change, sustainable energy, and public health, the US State Department announced Tuesday.

Each project will receive an award of approximately $250,000 that can be utilised over the three-year grant period to encourage mutual understanding, educational reform, and economic growth, as well as the development of junior faculty.

Indian-led Partnerships:

Mahatma Gandhi University: An Interdisciplinary and Community Oriented Approach toward Sustainable Development in partnership with Brown University, Duke University and Plymouth State University.

Banaras Hindu University: Paradigm Shift in Energy Scenario for the 21st Century toward Renewable Energy Sources required for both India and the US in partnership with University of Pittsburgh. 

Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur: International Programme for Sustainable Infrastructure Development in partnership with Virginia Tech University.

Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi: Resource Building for Ecosystem and Human Health Risk Assessment with Special reference to Microbial Contamination in partnership with Drexel University.

US-led partnerships: 

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey: Capitalising on the Demographic Dividend: Enhancing Talent Development Capacity for India and the US in the 21st Century in partnership with Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.

University of Montana: Impacts of Climate Change and Changes in Socio-Economic Structure on Traditional Agriculture and the Development of Sustainable Communities among Indigenous Populations in partnership with Bangalore University.

Cornell University: Implementing Reformed Curriculum in Emerging areas of Agriculture and Food Security in Two State Agricultural Universities of India in partnership with University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad and Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology, Meerut.

University of Michigan: The Joint Development of a Master's Degree in Education for Health Professions Faculty in the United States and India in partnership with Maharashtra University of the Health Sciences.

The next request for proposals for grants from the Obama-Singh Initiative announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Barack Obama in November 2009 will be announced in July 2012.  

Similarly the Mahatma Gandhi University will work on "An Interdisciplinary and Community Oriented Approach toward Sustainable Development" in partnership with the Brown University, Duke University and Plymouth State University.

The Banaras Hindu University will work on "Paradigm Shift in Energy Scenario for the 21st Century toward Renewable Energy Sources required for both India and the US" in partnership with the University of Pittsburgh.

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur has been given the project "International Program for Sustainable Infrastructure Development" in partnership with the Virginia Tech University.

IIT Delhi has been awarded with the project "Resource Building for Ecosystem and Human Health Risk Assessment with Special reference to Microbial Contamination" in partnership with the Drexel University.

It was in November 2009 that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President Barack Obama announced the Obama-Singh Initiative as an affirmation of their commitment to building an enhanced India-US partnership in education. Each government pledged USD 5 million for this endeavor, for a total of USD 10 million.
 
To implement this initiative, the two countries established a bi-national Obama-Singh Initiative joint working group (JWG). The JWG provides the final approval for all grants awarded through the Obama-Singh Initiative.

The JWG will allocate the USD 10 million over the course of a five year period awarding eight to 10 university partnership grants annually.
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