UKIBC supporting industry-academia links between the UK and India

By Tara Panjwani

On 30th September and 1st October, the UKIBC and DIT India organised a series of virtual interactions bringing together top Indian IT investors in the UK with 4 prestigious UK universities specialising in emerging technologies such as AI, Robotics, Machine Learning and Big Data Analytics to name a few.

Major blue-chip firms such as HCL, Ola, Infosys, Wipro, L&T Technology Services, WNS, Tech Mahindra, Hero Cycles and ITC Infotech took part in this programme while the 4 universities included the Universities of Bristol, Manchester, Glasgow and UCL.

The Indian IT investors wanted to connect with these universities to explore the possibility of recruiting graduates skilled in these niche technologies while the universities were keen to broaden and develop their industry engagement with these Indian corporates.

However, the presentations by the universities were so impressive and so effective in showcasing the breadth of their expertise and the calibre of their institutions that the Indian IT delegates started to express interest in engaging with these institutions beyond pure recruitment.  In the discussions that followed, it became clear to the Indian delegates that they stood to gain much more by broadening their objectives to consider a more holistic partnership which could encompass other areas such as research collaborations, internships and project apprenticeships, co-supervision of Masters degrees, and training in addition to graduate placements.

This was an excellent development and one that is very closely aligned to a new initiative that the UKIBC has just launched – the ‘University Corporate Partnership’ which aims to encourage and proactively facilitate new mutually beneficial partnerships between companies in India (beyond the IT sector) and UK academia to futureproof these organisations for the 21st century.

It is fair to say that the virtual showcase presented by the 4 universities was a real success. In addition to acting as a catalyst for new bilateral partnerships and collaborations between the participants,  this industry-academia interaction has provided both DIT and the UKIBC with very useful insights which we will continue to build upon through a series of similar such engagements in the coming months.

For further information or any queries, get in touch with Tara Panjwani, UKIBC Associate Director, at tara.panjwani@ukibc.com


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