Finance management and technical considerations can turn out to be as impediments in the setting up of the IoEs offshore campuses.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) had recently allowed the Institutions of Eminence (IoEs) to set up their respective offshore campuses in foreign nations. The institutes will have to receive no-objection certificates from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MFA) to set up these new campuses. IoEs include a number of IITs and public universities.
Finance and resource management can be a tedious task for setting up international campuses, as institutions function in not-for-profit mode on funding from the government.
Professor V. Ramgopal Rao, director, IIT Delhi, proclaims this decision as a welcome move with manifold benefits. With his interview with the Education times on Thursday,21st January, he stated,
“Setting up campuses in foreign countries will help us have an international footprint and improve perception, which plays a major role in global rankings. But it will not allow a level-playing field for government institutions as arranging funds would be a huge problem. We cannot expect government funding and hence will have to devise a financial model.”
Professor PC Joshi, the acting Vice-Chancellor of the University of Delhi, says that the institutes will have to figure out and plan a capital mechanism; maybe opting for public-private partnership (PPP) model. He said that the new foreign campuses can be set up in nations like Singapore and Mauritius as they presently host to a huge Indian diaspora and focus on research and development (R&D).
Simultaneously, Prof. Rao adds that the implementation of the respective arrangement will take some time as various considerations such as programmes to be offered, curriculum and admission procedures need to be foreplaned.
Prof. Rao added,
“While setting up the campus is tough, avoiding brand dilution will be equally difficult. We offer BTech at the undergraduate level in India, but we are not sure if it will have the same jargon in other countries. Similarly, the selection and admission process will have to be revised to align with the vision of these campuses. We may seek financial support from the host country, philanthropists or corporates.”
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