UKIBC Higher Education delegation to India

By Kealan Finnegan

Last week, UKIBC, led by Tara Panjwani and Kevin McCole, led a Higher Education delegation to India for UKIBC member universities and HE institutions, focusing on deepening UK and India higher education ties. A week full of interesting and important conversations with Indian partners across the higher education sector in West Bengal and Delhi.

West Bengal

We began the delegation with a welcome briefing with British High Commission in India and British Council. We then met with Industries Minister Dr Shashi Panja to discuss investment opportunities for UK plc and UK universities in West Bengal. Later we held a roundtable with FICCI and West Bengal businesses on India’s higher education sector and partnership opportunities for industry and academia.

On Tuesday, the group travelled to Jadavpur University for a University Social Responsibility policy dialogue and networking lunch with Indian higher education institutions. Later we visited Sister Nivedita University to explore potential collaborations between institutions, student and teacher mobility, and SNU’s future plans.

On Wednesday, we visited Techno India University and engaged in further interactions around mobility and partnerships, including learning about TIU’s human focussed philosophy and giving back to the community. Mutual mobility of students and teacher exchanges between UK and Indian higher education institutions is a clear interest area, as well as research collaborations and joint degrees. The delegation then travelled to Delhi!


We began a busy schedule in Delhi on Thursday with a meeting with UKIBC CEO Richard McCallum to discuss areas of opportunities for institutional partnerships and collaborations. We then met with FICCI to discuss the new direction of Indian Higher Education and partnership opportunities for UK and Indian universities, including internationalisation of HE, faculty mobility, joint research collaborations and curriculum mapping for credit transfer.

We then travelled to University Grants Commission of India offices for a meeting with UGC Vice Chairman Prof Deepak Srivastava and Joint Secretary Dr Archana Thakur on the progress made by UGC in implementing National Education Policy and UGC’s focus on inclusive education, research and skill development.

Later, we met with UKIBC member Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas for a conversation on legal and regulatory requirements relevant to the HE sector. The day finished with a networking reception with UK and Indian industry at UKIBC’s Socio-Economic Impact reception at the British High Commissioner’s Residence

On the fifth and final day of the delegation, we held a forum with Nasscom to discuss Industry 5.0 and corporate-academia partnerships, skills and social responsibility.

A brilliant end to a fantastic and engaging delegation in Kolkata and Delhi, with lots of actions to take away!

A huge thank you to all our partners who have helped to make the delegation a success – a week full of interesting conversations, sharing of ideas, knowledge, and building the platform for greater UK-India collaboration in the higher education space.

Get in touch if you are interested in joining the UKIBC as members or simply to find out more.

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