Enhancing Industry Academia Interaction by alicejenny


									Enhancing Industry-Academia

           Anil K. Gupta
     Department of Geology & Geophysics
        Indian Institute of Technology
             Kharagpur – 721 302
TEACHING, research and extension are the trio of
              higher education

•Teaching - communicates knowledge to students, stimulating their
interest in it, and preparing them to take up Industry/Academia job

•Research - extends the frontiers of knowledge, and lends depth,
breadth and authenticity to teaching

•Extension - exploits existing knowledge for socio-economically
beneficial purposes – i.e., the Industry-Academia Interaction
Industry - Academia Interaction

                 Industry needs and expectations

• Big industries have the resources to invest in technology
  development initiatives. Academic participation is often needed in
  minor or major technological innovations. In such interactions,
  industry’s expected time frames have been immediate and
  investment is directed towards efforts that promise result oriented

                      Academia expectations

• An academician shows interest normally in problems that are
  intellectually challenging. His areas of interest lie in technology
  development initiatives and methods related to process and design
  improvement. Researchers have strong preference for working
  towards creation of knowledge in specialized areas. For industry-
  related problems, a researcher has to explore a variety of options
  which is time consuming.
   For Industry
• Collaboration provides industry an opportunity to grow
  its business by using the results of academic research
• Industry benefits by using the academic knowledge base
  to improve industrial cost, quality and competitive
  dimensions, reducing dependence on foreign know-how
  and expenditure on internal R&D

  For Academia
• The collaboration earns additional resources for an
  academic system severely constrained financially
• Results move fundamental research from the
  laboratories to the common man’s place. That is
  discoveries move from the Academic Institution to the
  market place
                       Inhibiting factors
From the industry's side: Insensitivity to and lack of awareness of
the resource potential of the academia, a blind, herd-like
obsession with expensive, high-profile professional consultants,
easy availability of foreign know-how, compulsions of existing
technical collaboration agreements, bad experience of earlier
interactions with academia, anxiety to keep problems and
breakthroughs confidential for fear of losing the competitive edge.

From academia's side: Apathy towards applied research and
extension and reluctance to leave the comfort zone of pure
teaching; inadequate marketing of its strengths to industry; lack
of a critical mass of experts and specialized technical
infrastructure; overspecialized loyalties and reluctance to
collaborate in inter-disciplinary problem-solving; unhelpful,
restrictive internal policies and procedures discouraging or
frustrating academicians' attempts to collaborate with industry.
• Of the three major systems in academia — CSIR laboratories,
  IITs and universities — the first two are distinctly stronger in
  terms of management, resources, expertise and reputation.
  They should, therefore, co-opt reputed university departments
  as partners in all major research and consultancy projects

• Research and consultancy should be as a value-adding activity

• At the annual conferences, industries as well as academics
  should make presentations on academia's problem-solving,
  research and consultancy capabilities

• Identify areas where academia can help industries. Some
  thoughts are: enhanced oil recovery, reservoir modeling,
  development of exploration and technology capabilities to
  explore and exploit gas hydrates
 Some ice-breaking initiatives would be beneficial to both:

•Academia to employ practicing professionals from industry as part-time guest
faculty and/or constituting a Research Chair

•Academia to offer short-term courses for professionals in industry, as this is a
safe, inexpensive trial interaction for them

•Academia to take up specific industry problems

•Industry to support to basic research for knowledge creation

•Industry to participate in technology development involving exploratory work

•Industry to provide summer trainings/project for UG/PG students and research
scholars in industry

•Industry to offer research projects to academia including research fellowships
or Post-doctoral fellowships on topics of their interests

•Industry to encourage their personnel to take up projects in Academia which
are of interests to their employers
     Industry-Academia Interaction at IIT Kharagpur
•   IIT Kharagpur gave major thrust in Academia-Industry interaction by
    establishing a Science & Technology Entrepreneur Park (STEP) in August,
    1987 with support from DST New Delhi, DST West Bengal, IDBI, IFCI, ICICI

Some Examples of Fruitful Industry-Academia Interactions at IIT KGP
•   VLSI = funded by software giants to develop softwares, IT utilities, etc.
•   Technology Incubation & Entrepreneur Training Society (TIETS)
•   MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS) – started with funded from Texas
    Instruments, etc.
•   Vodafone – IIT KGP Center of Excellence for Telecommunication
•   Steel Technology Center – started this year with funds from DST, Ministry of
    Steel & Mines, TATA Steels, SAIL

No major beginning with Hydrocarbon Giants, yet
•   The only collaboration between GG Dept and Industry is summer training and
    placements of students in the companies. But more needs to be done.

•   For Industry’s benefit, possibility of collaboration may be explored with
    potential participating Departments of IIT Kharagpur - Geology & Geophysics,
    Chemical Engg., Mining Engg., Ocean Engg. & Naval Architecture, Mechanical
    Engg., Electrical Engg., etc.

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