What are Innovation Universities?
Innovation Universities would be set up based on the concept on innovation. There are numerous problems that India is facing. Be it environmental, social, political, health, scientific, nuclear and military. The innovation Universities would focus on one of the problem and develop a pool of research to solve or attempt to solve that problem. These Universities will be completely targeting the area of problem and try to achieve excellence in that field. This will be enabled by creating an education system from under graduate to post graduate around this problem field. The entire management of the Innovation Universities will be autonomous and grants will be given by the central government towards the research activities in the Innovation Universities.
The Innovation Universities are being setup on the basis of the underlying principle:
"Knowledge or education is not established on following rigorous disciplinary educational system nor is it application of the previously established knowledge. It is rather generated almost instantaneously when working on particular area of problem."
Need of Innovation Universities
Higher education in India is not looked upon by Indians and is not world class. In this age only the Indian Institute of Technology (IITs), National Institute of Technology (NITs), Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and Indian Institute of Management (IIM) are of world standards. Rest all the Universities are neither recognized in international arena nor are they of world class infrastructure.
To take India on the global map of education and attract the young talent in India for education, there needs to be a concept which will develop research in particular domain or area. Innovation Universities will establish the threshold and will develop a sense of pride amoung students so that they are attracted to the higher education in India.
Aims of Innovation Universities
Following are the aims of the innovation universities:
1. To strive for research and development related activities in a specialized field rather than a broader study course.
2. To aspire for pinnacle of knowledge in the respected filed.
3. To obtain these aims by innovative and specialized means.
4. To target the wants of the poor and strive to find out solution for the problems of the poor rather than the rich.
5. To work for social, environmental and scientific problems along with research in a specific filed.
Location of Innovation Universities
1. Vishakhapatanam - Andhra Pradesh
2. Pune - Maharashtra
3. Patna - Bihar
4. Gandhinagar - Gujarat
5. Bhopal - Madhya Pradesh
6. Mysore - Karnataka
7. Coimbatore - Tamil Nadu
8. Kochi - Kerala
9. Jaipur - Rajasthan
10. Noida - Uttar Pradesh
11. Kolkata - West Bengal
12. Amritsar - Punjab
13. Bhubhaneshwar - Orissa
14. Guwahati - North Eastern States
Admissions in Innovation Universities
The admissions in Innovation Universities are to be carried out based on the principles and guidelines created by the Universities themselves. The Universities will be having complete autonomy for this purpose. Following are a few points to be considered while admitting the candidate in an innovation university.
1. Merit based admissions based on the marks obtained in the secondary and higher secondary courses.
2. Entrance examinations carried out jointly or by the admitting institute individually.
3. Interviews after clearing of the exams and selection of the candidates
4. Reservation of seats in innovation universities will be there are the Innovation Universities are government funded to an extent. Such reservation will be applicable to SC,ST and OBC.
5. All the admission to Innovation Universities will be subject to the individual University and no organization or institution will be responsible for the admissions directly or indirectly.
Courses offered by Innovation Universities
The Innovation Universities will cover the following major courses and award degrees based on the qualifications. But the main degrees will be as follows
1. Graduate programs
2. Post Graduate programs
3. Research Programs
Graduate programs in Innovation Universities
The graduate degree conferred by the Innovation University will be equivalent if not less to the graduate degrees offered by any University in India. The entire syllabus and the course description will be handled by the individual innovation university. The choice of selection of the courses in Innovation Universities will be left on the candidate.
Post Graduate programs in Innovation Universities
The post graduate degree conferred by the Innovation University will be equivalent if not less to the post graduate degrees offered by any University in India. The entire syllabus and the course description will be handled by the individual innovation university. The choice of selection of the courses in Innovation Universities will be left on the candidate.
Research programs in Innovation Universities
The research will be carried out in the Innovation Universities with direct funding by the central government. The admissions and the programs to research programs will be solely on the innovation universities. The research programs will be carried out in the following fields:
6. Public welfare
Fees of Innovation Universities and grants given by Innovation Universities
The Innovation Universities research activities are funded by the central Government. Apart from this any grants in fees and scholarship awards will be conferred directly from the Central Government.
1. Grants for toppers in secondary and higher secondary education
2. Scholarships for meritorious students
3. Grants for backward class students
4. Freeships for needy and bright students
The final fees will be decided by the University board depending on the grant provided by the Central Government. The Innovation Universities will be working on a strictly no profit basis wherein the entire extra money generated through admission fees will be diverted solely on research activities and not to fill anybody pockets.
Interest of UK Universities in Innovation Universities
As many as 14 UK Universities have shown interest in the Innovation Universities. These universities will help in the design and creation of the Innovation Universities in India. These Universities will be acting as partner for the Innovation Universities and will be ensuring grants, library and research activities in these Universities. They will also be an important part for designing syllabus for the Innovation Universities.
Some of the UK Universities which have shown interest are:
1. Oxford University
2. Cambridge University
3. Imperial University
4. Essex University
5. Exeter University
6. Birmingham University
7. Newcastle University
8. The Open University
Status of the bill on Innovation Universities
As of 22nd July, 2010 the bill on Innovation Universities has been drafted by Mr. Kapil Sibbal and is circulated among the premier institutes and universities in India for any changes in the bill. The very first draft has been prepared and is supposed to be discussed in the winter session of the parliament of India. As far as the success and implementation of the concept of Innovation Universities, only time will tell. But the idea and the planning is very nice and the Innovation Universities will bring about a dramatic change in the Indian education sector.