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Number Seven Thousand Five Hundred and Seventy Eight - 11 June 2024
Iran Daily - Number Seven Thousand Five Hundred and Seventy Eight - 11 June 2024 - Page 5

Potential of academic partnership between India, Iran

In a rapidly changing global landscape, collaboration and partnerships between nations have become increasingly important for economic and social development. Academic partnerships, in particular, play a crucial role in fostering innovation, research, as well as knowledge and technology exchange. India and Iran, two ancient civilizations with rich cultural heritage and strong academic traditions, have the potential to greatly benefit from closer collaboration in the field of education.

ITEC program
The Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) program, initiated by the Government of India in 1964, has been instrumental in promoting technical cooperation and capacity building with partner countries. Iran has been a long-standing participant in the ITEC program, sending professionals and students to India for training in a wide range of areas, including agriculture, information technology, and healthcare.
The ITEC program has played a significant role in strengthening ties between India and Iran by facilitating knowledge exchange, cultural understanding, and networking opportunities. By expanding and diversifying the scope of the ITEC program, both countries can leverage their respective strengths in academia to address common challenges and opportunities.
One area where India and Iran can benefit greatly from collaboration is in the field of science and technology. Both countries have a strong research base and a growing focus on innovation and entrepreneurship. By fostering academic partnerships in areas such as nanotechnology, biotechnology, renewable energy, and artificial intelligence, India and Iran can leverage their respective expertise to drive technological advancements and economic growth.

Skilled professionals
Furthermore, collaboration in the field of higher education can help address the growing demand for skilled professionals in both countries. By sharing best practices in academic curriculum development, faculty training, and student exchange programs, India and Iran can enhance the quality of education and improve graduates’ employability in a competitive global market.
Another area with tremendous potential for academic partnership between India and Iran is cultural exchange and language studies. Both countries boast rich cultural heritage and diverse linguistic traditions. By promoting academic collaborations in areas such as literature, history, and language studies, India and Iran can deepen their cultural understanding and foster cross-cultural dialogue.
The benefits of academic partnership between India and Iran are not limited to the academic domain alone. Collaborations in education can also facilitate people-to-people ties, promote tourism, and enhance diplomatic relations between the two nations. By investing in academic exchanges, research partnerships, and joint academic initiatives, India and Iran can build a strong foundation for long-lasting cooperation and friendship.
Academic MoUs
In recent years, the governments of India and Iran have taken several initiatives to strengthen academic ties between the two countries. The signing of memorandums of understanding (MoUs) between universities, research institutions, and educational bodies has paved the way for enhanced collaboration in areas such as joint research projects, faculty exchanges, and student scholarships.
Recently, Climate Change and Health Research Centre of Tehran University of Medical Sciences (TUMS) inks a pact with Edward and Cynthia Institute of Public Health (ECIPH), Mangaluru, India to promote academic and policy-based research cantered around public health consequences of climate change and human health interactions.
The two institutions will be pursuing academic and policy-based initiatives wherein the health systems convergence and impact is ascertained pertaining to climate change risks in the region and also cascading risks around disaster management and sustainable development.
The cooperation will be further nurtured through joint research, policy briefs, seminars, exchange program for faculties, researchers, students and co-creation of knowledge products that influence and impact global health diplomacy and strengthen bilateral public health cooperation between Iran and India.
The MoU was signed on April 23 by Abbas Ostad Taqizadeh, dean of the center at TUMS and Edmond Fernandes, director of ECIPH.
In March 2023, Iranian and Indian officials in the field of publication and international book exhibitions signed an MoU.
The MoU was signed in the presence of the head of the National Book Union of India and the managing director of Iran Book and Literature House.
According to the MoU, publishers of Iran and India take part in the exhibitions of the two countries and will present their works, which will facilitate the cultural interactions between the two countries.

Other initiatives
Initiatives such as the India-Iran Joint Working Group on Education and the establishment of academic chairs and centers of excellence have provided platforms for sustained engagement and collaboration in the field of education. By leveraging these initiatives and building on existing partnerships, India and Iran can unlock the full potential of academic collaboration for mutual benefit.
As India and Iran look towards a brighter future of academic partnership, it is essential to address challenges and barriers that may hinder effective collaboration. Issues such as visa restrictions and bureaucratic hurdles can impede the flow of students, scholars, and researchers between the two countries.
To overcome these challenges, both nations need to streamline visa processes, promote language training programs, and facilitate academic exchanges through joint programs and scholarships. By addressing these barriers and creating a conducive environment for academic partnership, India and Iran can maximize the potential of collaboration and unlock new opportunities for innovation and growth.

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