A new centre called the Ireland India Institute has been officially opened at Dublin City University (DCU) this morning. The aim of the centre will be to spawn research, enterprise and academic collaborations between Ireland and India.
The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn, TD, was at DCU this morning for the launch of the institute.
Indian entrepreneur Kiran Mizumdar-Shaw, who is the founder, chairperson and managing director of the biotechnology company Biocon, is to become patron of the Ireland India Institute. She set up Biocon, which is based in Bangalore, in 1978.
Research fund and scholarships
As part of the centre, a new Ireland-India research fund is being set up to help fund research in areas such as sustainable technologies, health and multiculturalism in both countries.
There will also be Ireland India Institute scholarships to support Indian scholars and researchers in their studies in Ireland.
The centre will also host a seminar series to bring significant thinkers on contemporary India to Ireland. There will also be academic and extra-mural programmes pertaining to contemporary India.
Mizunder-Shaw spoke this morning about becoming patron of the institute. She touched on how both India and Ireland are facing similar global challenges and issues such as healthcare, ageing and sustainability.
“The Institute will help focus our joint efforts in achieving common solutions to these challenges. It will become a focal point for the study of contemporary India and a place for all friends of India. I welcome DCU’s continued strategic focus on my country which is based on academic and research excellence," said Mizunder-Shaw.
Minister Quinn spoke about DCU’s strategic focus on contemporary India, which he said had already resulted in a series of research collaborations with the subcontinent’s most prestigious Institutions, particularly in the areas of science and technology.
Engaging with India
DCU students Rachita Singh and Abina Philip, pictured with the university’s president, Professor Brian MacCraith, at the launch of DCU’s Ireland India Institute today
Meanwhile, DCU’s president Professor Brian MacCraith, touched on how engaging with India is part of his overall vision for the university.
"On becoming president of DCU I made engagement with contemporary India a key strategic priority for the university," he said.
MacCraith said that DCU’s faculty and researchers have since made "great" strides in developing active research projects with DCU’s Indian partners in Institutions such as IIT Madras, IISC Bangalore, JNU and IIT Delhi.
"That unprecedented degree of collaboration will be developed and fostered in the coming years through the Ireland India Institute which will become the hub for all those in Irish enterprise and academia who seek to develop our common goal of deeper Ireland India collaboration," he added.