20, Mar 2024
New La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor strengthens ties during India visit

20th March 2024, Delhi: Australia’s La Trobe University has identified key areas to further strengthen its longstanding commitment to Indian Research and Education partnerships during a visit by the University’s New Vice-Chancellor. Professor Theo Farrell, who began as Vice-Chancellor in February this year, has met with a range of Industry, Government, and Trade Representatives during a five-day visit to the country.

New La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor strengthens ties during India visit

La Trobe has a proud and successful history in India, partnering with tertiary institutions and organizations on projects that benefit both countries and helping develop India’s brightest minds through joint education opportunities.

During his visit, Professor Farrell convened several Roundtable discussions with Partners, Industry, and Government Representatives, on opportunities to collaborate on areas of mutual interest that address national priorities and that are important for Industry Innovation and Development.

Professor Farrell said there were several priority areas for La Trobe that presented opportunities for deepening relationships in India and developing new partnerships.

These include continuing to support and expand student exchanges in India and Australia; developing research focussed on digital technologies and skills innovations; research commercialization opportunities, and linkages with industry partners. Deepening mutual industry partnerships play to La Trobe’s strengths in areas including smart cities, sustainable agriculture and food security, bio innovation, and in health and care innovation.

“Some of La Trobe’s most important university partners are in India, and we are building important partnerships with industry and businesses in India that leverage our significant expertise in areas including sustainable food and agriculture, health and wellbeing, technology and bio-innovation, ”Professor Farrell said.

“Our expertise in bio-innovation has recently been recognised by BioNTech, one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies, who have chosen La Trobe’s Melbourne campus as the base for its new mRNA manufacturing facility to develop and test cancer treatments. “In addition, we’re committed to institutional cross-learning, joint intellectual programs and research, collaborative approaches that address industry challenges and joint educational partnerships that provide important valuable learning opportunities for students.”

Opportunities for further collaboration and engagement were also discussed at a Leadership Roundtable of all member Universities of the Asian Smart Cities Research Innovation Network (ASCRIN), which was founded by La Trobe University in 2019 and is now its Single Largest Research Internationalisation Initiative with joint investment of more than AUD $43 million (Rs 235 crores)

ASCRIN brings together a network of researchers, global industry partners, government collaborators, and start-ups to advance research into smart city-related projects, helping to improve the sustainability, livability, and efficiency of cities and towns in the region.

“The Network, with over 250 researchers, has already made significant strides in curating a strong portfolio of impact-based projects aimed at enhancing sustainability, liveability, and efficiency of cities and towns in the region. Our vision is now to build on this and accelerate engagement with industry and government to fast-track commercialisation and adoption pathways,” said Professor Aniruddha Desai, ASCRIN Founder and Co-Director of IIT Kanpur – La Trobe University Research Academy.

The Network has over 50 projects underway that will make a tangible difference in the lives of people in India, including:

• Data-driven decision-making to improve Dairy supply chains.

• Re-using construction and demolition waste to reduce landfill.

• Intelligent planning of energy grids to optimize consumption and reduce costs.

• Using sensors to improve indoor growing conditions of medicinal crops.

• Real-time crash prediction in traffic on urban roads and intersections to increase the safety of all road users.

The Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS) last year joined other leading tertiary institutions, the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT-K) and Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani (BITS-Pilani) as partners in the Network, which already includes more than 250 researchers and over 70 Joint-PhD projects.

Professor Farrell and Pro Vice Chancellor of TISS, Professor Shankar Das also announced a Joint- PhD program, which will support Indian students to conduct research addressing the growing challenges of urbanization in Asia.

The La Trobe delegation will celebrate the finalists and winners of the Annual Technology Infusion Grand Challenge, which is designed to encourage undergraduate students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and Business fields to be confident in their skills and knowledge to produce a solutions and solve a concrete problem using next-generation smart technologies.

Over 130 students in some 67 teams from 18 universities in the region submitted innovative entries.

Professor Farrell will also visit Mahindra University, where La Trobe has launched a joint Bachelor’s degree program in civil engineering.

The collaboration, initiated in 2023, aligns with India’s National Education Policy 2023 and Australia’s Education Strategy for India, offering a unique opportunity for students to pursue their Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering with two years at Mahindra University and two years at La Trobe University. Students will receive a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from both Universities.

30, Jan 2024
Samsung R&D Institute, Noida Signs MoU with IIT Kanpur

Bengaluru, January 30, 2024: Samsung R&D Institute, Noida (SRI-Noida) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with The Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IITK) for a period of five years to focus on key growth areas that will include joint research projects by IIT Kanpur students, faculty and Samsung engineers, helping students become industry-ready. These research projects will span areas such as health, visual, framework, and B2B security, and cutting-edge technology areas such as Generative AI and Cloud.

Apart from research projects, the MoU seeks to provide opportunities for upskilling Samsung engineers in key technology areas such as AI, Cloud, and other emerging technologies.

The MoU was signed by Mr. Kyungyun Roo, Managing Director, SRI-Noida, Prof. Tarun Gupta, Dean, Research and Development, IIT Kanpur and in the presence of Prof. S. Ganesh, Director, IIT Kanpur; Prof. Sandeep Verma, Department of Chemistry, IIT Kanpur; Prof. Tushar Sandhan, Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT Kanpur; and other senior delegates from Samsung.

Samsung R&D Institute Signs MoU with IIT Kanpur

“We are excited to begin this collaborative journey with IIT Kanpur. This collaboration reflects our dedication towards merging academic excellence with industrial innovation, thereby making students industry-ready. We look forward to a dynamic exchange of ideas, knowledge and talent, which will certainly play a crucial role in the success of groundbreaking projects and contribute to the growth of both Samsung and IIT Kanpur,” said Mr. Kyungyun Roo, Managing Director, SRI-Noida.

“By combining the academic excellence of IIT Kanpur with the industry expertise of Samsung India, we aim to create a dynamic environment for cutting-edge projects and provide invaluable opportunities for our students and researchers. This MoU complements IIT Kanpur’s relentless efforts in bridging the gap between academia and industry, while creating a connection between theoretical knowledge and practical industry solutions,” said Prof. S. Ganesh, Director, IIT Kanpur.

“The MoU reflects our commitment to providing our students and researchers with opportunities that go beyond academics, contributing significantly to technological advancements and growth of the academic landscape of our institute,” said Prof. Tarun Gupta, Dean, Research and Development, IIT Kanpur.

As part of the joint research projects, students and faculty of IIT Kanpur will work on real-world industry challenges, aligning themselves with actual market needs. They will also work on Digital India related solutions, along with Samsung engineers.

Students and faculty of IIT Kanpur will also be encouraged to publish joint research papers with Samsung engineers.

Under the upskilling opportunities for Samsung engineers, IIT Kanpur will conduct specialized training programs in various domains, providing them with access to the institute’s renowned expertise, culminating in degree programs, certifications and specialized courses tailored to enhance the skill and knowledge of Samsung engineers.

11, Jan 2024
IIT Kanpur joint-study on Cost-Effective Alloy for Energy Storage recognized by Nature Magazine

Bengaluru, 11 January 2024: A research paper and study on the use of a special alloy that could make it easier and affordable to convert and store energy from renewable sources by Prof. Krishanu Biswas of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, IIT Kanpur and a team of multi-institutional researchers has been highlighted by Nature, the world’s leading multidisciplinary science journal, as one of the ‘high-impact research papers from India that are shaping science’.

Prof. Krishanu Biswas and fellow researchers from IIT Mandi, IIT Kharagpur and IISc Bangalore, conducted research on a special kind of material called a high entropy alloy (HEA), comprising a mix of five elements; Cobalt, Iron, Gallium, Nickel, and Zinc, for its use in splitting of water into oxygen and hydrogen. Water splitting is essential in many technological applications such as electrolyzer, fuel cells, and catalysis. The most important aspect of water splitting is its ability to efficiently separate water, abundantly available on the earth, into hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen is considered a clean substitute for fossil fuels with net-zero emissions. This research categorically demonstrates the effectiveness of this innovative alloy, surpassing the performance and durability of expensive materials such as ruthenium oxide, currently used for the same purpose. The materials of the study are made up of earth-abundant elements, making it sustainable and easy to fabricate for application. The research paper titled ‘Low-cost high entropy alloy (HEA) for high-efficiency oxygen evolution reaction (OER),’ was published in the Nano Research Journal in its edition dated 2022, 15 (6).

Prof. Krishanu Biswas, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, IIT Kanpur

The study has wide ramifications in green hydrogen economy in which energy-rich hydrogen is extracted from water through electrochemical water-splitting. Electrochemical water splitting is a highly promising sustainable and pollution-free approach for green hydrogen and oxygen production. The process requires two electrodes being immersed in an electrolyte solution. The chemical reactions at the electrodes driving the production of oxygen and hydrogen gas require efficient bifunctional catalyst. However, the process was not commercially viable so far, as most electrochemical systems use rare and expensive metals that restrict their use in large-scale applications. On the other hand, lower-cost systems were not being able to achieve efficient catalysis. The novel alloy catalyst designed, developed, and tested by Prof. Biswas and his collaborators can make this process easier and more affordable by using low-cost high-entropy alloy to store energy from renewable sources, allowing the use of clean energy. This could further aggravate our stride towards a cleaner environment, reducing dependence on fossil fuels and mitigating global warming.

In addition to Prof. Krishanu Biswas, the other researchers on the team included Dr. Nirmal Kumar Katiyar from IIT Kanpur, Prof. Aditi Halder and Dr. Lalita Sharma from IIT Mandi, Prof. Chandra Sekhar Tiwary and Dr. Rakesh Das from IIT Kharagpur, Prof. Abhishek K. Singh, Dr. Arko Parui and Dr. Ritesh Kumar from Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.

9, Jan 2024
Lava International Strengthens Collaborative Partnerships with Leading Indian Academic Institutions

New Delhi, January 9, 2024 — Lava International, a leading Indian Smartphone brand, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with IIT Kanpur and Amity University in an agreement aimed at advancing research in the fields of Mobile Technology, 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), and Cyber Security etc.

Lava_IIT Kanpur 2

The MoU signing ceremony between Lava International and IIT Kanpur, held on January 8, witnessed the presence of notable dignitaries, including UC-San Diego Chancellor Prof Pradeep K. Khosla and other esteemed officials from the Uttar Pradesh government.

Recently, Lava International has entered into a similar collaboration with Amity University further solidifying its commitment to fostering innovation and research in mobile technology. The partnership between Lava International and Amity University will focus on joint research projects in the dynamic field of mobile technology and software design.

The collaboration goes beyond the MoU, as the parties are engaged in discussions regarding various initiatives, such as organizing a Ideathons, Hackathon, and conducting research to build a secure Indian operating systems.

Lava_IIT Kanpur 1

Speaking on signing the MoU, Dr. Rishi Mohan Bhatnagar, President, Lava International said, “These strategic partnerships signify a pivotal moment for Lava, aligning with our vision to push the boundaries of mobile technology. By joining forces with renowned academic institutions, we are strategically positioning ourselves at the forefront of innovation. This collaboration not only strengthens our commitment to advancing research and development but also provides a unique platform for knowledge exchange and exploration. Together, we are poised to shape the future of mobile technology in India, fostering a synergy to drive strategic growth for Lava.”

The joint efforts of Lava International and the respective institutions promises to shape the future of mobile technology, creating a synergy that brings together the strengths of both academia and industry.

16, Dec 2023
Kotak Mahindra Bank Associates with IIT Kanpur to Establish India’s First Fully Integrated School of Sustainability

Bengaluru,16 December 2023: The Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IITK) and the Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited (“KMBL”/ “Kotak”) today announced the launch of Kotak School of Sustainability – India’s first fully integrated school of sustainability at IIT Kanpur. The launch event was graced by Shri. Dharmendra Pradhan, Hon’ble Union Minister of Education and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India as the chief guest; Dr. Abhay Karandikar, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, and Shri. Nagendra Nath Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Steel, as guests of honour; Prof. S. Ganesh, Director, IIT Kanpur; Mr. Prakash Apte, Chairman Kotak Mahindra Bank, Shanti Ekambaram, Whole-time Director, Kotak Mahindra Bank, C S Rajan, Independent Director, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Himanshu Nivsarkar, Senior EVP and Head CSR, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Mr. Kapil Kaul, Chief Executive Officer, IIT Kanpur Development Foundation.

02_The launch event of the Kotak School of Sustainability

Global warming poses a serious threat to our existence, manifesting in untimely natural calamities, pollution, and biodiversity loss. Research indicates irreversible ‘Tipping Points’ with rapid, harmful climatic changes. Realising this is an imminent existential crisis and that anthropogenic activities need to be environmentally sustainable; world leaders have been discussing in COP (Conference of Parties) meetings to come up with policies and actions that can lead to a sustainable future. The United Nations (UN’s) seventeen sustainable development goals address this challenge, crucial in densely populated countries like India. Urgent climate actions are needed to mitigate, adapt, and build resilience.

Despite the challenge, collaboration among policymakers, academia, businesses, and society offers opportunities for the mitigation, adaptation and resilience to climate change. In addressing the climate-driven sustainability challenge, educational institutions play a vital role. The UN emphasizes education’s role in promoting climate action, empowering people to understand and address climate impacts. Sustainability education and research require academic institutions to blend environmental science and clean technology-based approaches with social, economic and ecological aspects of sustainability. Institutions, through Education, Empowerment, and Engagement (3E), can lead climate action, empowering communities and conserving the natural ecosystem.

To address this challenge, IIT Kanpur and KMBL have come together to establish India’s first integrated School of Sustainability. KMBL is funding IITK through its CSR program to establish Kotak School of Sustainability with a vision to promote pedigree education, research, and outreach. Kotak and IITK believe that this School is poised to offer thought leadership solutions towards sustainability actions and prepare future generations to lead the cause of sustainable development. The School will bring together departments and centres of excellence at IITK with an aim to provide an enabling environment for collaborative research across multiple facets of sustainability. Kotak School of Sustainability will have dedicated centres of excellence covering different aspects of sustainability such as clean energy, environment, ecology, circular economy, climate finance, sustainable societies and policy.

The Kotak School of Sustainability will be led by tenured professors and leading industry experts from across the globe. The School is placed to run both undergraduate and postgraduate academic and skill-building programs in different themes of sustainability. The School will be housed in a green building in IITK’s main campus that will be platinum-rated with net zero practices on energy, water, and waste.

Shri. Dharmendra Pradhan, Hon’ble Union Minister of Education and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, said “The National Research Foundation was set up to boost research and innovation through funding from industry and government. I thank Kotak Mahindra Bank for taking the right step and accepting the responsibility by contributing towards setting up the School of Sustainability. The Kotak School of Sustainability will give global leadership in the field in line with the history of IIT Kanpur and its alumni who are leaders in organizations across the world. The school will not only be about technology and economics, but will cover the A to Z of sustainability. This will be instrumental in helping India meet the ambitious target of net zero by 2070, as announced by our Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi ji.”

Prof. Abhay Karandikar, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology, Govt. of India, said, “Kotak School of Sustainability highlights IIT Kanpur’s commitment to offer a holistic approach to address sustainability challenges due to climate change. School’s mission are in sync with India’s National Missions related to sustainability. The school will help in developing a strong foundation for sustainable development to achieve a climate resilient economy and society and will support country’s climate action plans and national target to reach net zero by 2070.”

Shri. Nagendra Nath Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Steel, said “Opening of a School of sustainability serves an important need of the Indian economy. The goal of Sustainability requires inter-disciplinary approach which this school offers while the solutions must be contextual. The school would be able to draw faculty, researchers, students, policymakers, and diverse stakeholders to attempt solutions to complex and seemingly intractable problems. I am looking forward to this institution significantly contributing towards the progress of the society and economy, benign to Mother Earth.”

Mr. Prakash Apte, Chairman, Kotak Mahindra Bank said, “We are delighted to announce the establishment of the Kotak School of Sustainability in association with IIT Kanpur. This association in line with our CSR vision to enhance the quality of life for communities through positive impacts on economic, social, and environmental parameters, aligns with India’s social development objectives and UN’s SDGs. We believe the creation of this School provides both Kotak and IIT Kanpur with a timely opportunity to create a legacy and work towards sustainability, the most important survival challenge we face today.”

Prof. S. Ganesh, Director, IIT Kanpur, said, “Sustainability has emerged as one of the foremost global challenges of our times which requires various stakeholders to work together and the role of educational institutes like ours is extremely crucial in this mission. Adding to many of IIT Kanpur’s path-breaking initiatives and with the generous CSR funding support from Kotak Mahindra Bank, Institute is establishing ‘Kotak School of Sustainability’ with the overall vision of providing thought leadership, developing concrete solutions toward sustainability actions, and preparing future generations to lead the cause of sustainable development.”

Ms. Shanti Ekambaram, Whole time Director, Kotak Mahindra Bank said, “As India continues on its growth path with aspirations to reach high middle-income status, our ability to exist and develop without depleting all of the natural resources will be a challenge that needs to be addressed. The Kotak School of Sustainability marks our commitment to contribute to growing India’s skilled workforce towards achieving the goal of long-term sustainable development including its net-zero target by 2070. The Bank’s CSR Project being implemented in association with IIT Kanpur will focus on enhancing home-grown capabilities to address sustainable development.”

Prof. Ashish Garg, Professor-in-Charge of the School, said, “The Kotak School of Sustainability aims to excel in sustainability education, research and innovation, technology development, entrepreneurship, and outreach. The key to the development of holistic end-to-end technology solutions for sustainable development will be school’s emphasis on synergistic integration of different aspects of sustainability for greater educational, scientific, technological, environmental and social impact.”

23, Nov 2023
Empowering Student Learning: MoE & IIT Kanpur’s SATHEE Platform Initiates Outreach to Transform Exam Preparation in KVs, NVs, and CBSE Schools

Bangalore, November 23, 2023: The Ministry of Education and IIT Kanpur has announced the successful outreach of SATHEE (Self-Assessment Test and Help for Entrance Exams), an innovative online education platform to empower the millions of students preparing for competitive exams across the country. This initiative marks a significant milestone in the implementation of the National Education Policy 2020 and in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 4.

The platform was unveiled by Shri K Sanjay Murthy, Secretary, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education, in an event at Shastri Bhawan in the presence of other invited dignitaries Professor S. Ganesh, Officiating Director, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur; Shri Govind Jaiswal, Joint Secretary, Higher Education, Ministry of Education; Shri Sanjay Kumar, Hon’ble Secretary, School Education, Ministry of Education, Professor Amey Karkare, Principal Investigator, SATHEE Project, IIT Kanpur.

SATHEE, now live, offers a comprehensive suite of resources for NEET and JEE aspirants, including video lectures from renowned faculties of IITs and IISc. The platform has commenced with its first 45-day JEE crash course, designed to provide intensive preparation and revision in a short period, ideal for students looking to consolidate their learning before exams.

The platform will also host a series of intensive, expert-designed learning modules along with novel features like an interactive chatbot. Regular doubt-clearing sessions led by students from IITs and AIIMS will enhance the learning experience and maintain a human connect with the students. The SATHEE platform is expected to receive an overwhelming response from students across the nation.

“The outreach of SATHEE marks a significant step towards enhancing accessibility to education in India. This platform opens up new avenues for students preparing for competitive exams, offering quality resources and support. Our goal is to ensure that every student, irrespective of their location or financial situation, has the opportunity to excel in their academic pursuits. SATHEE is a testament to our commitment to educational equity and excellence,” said Prof. S. Ganesh, Officiating Director, IIT Kanpur.

The platform stands out with its multilingual support, offering content in English, Hindi, and various Indian regional languages, ensuring no student is left behind due to language barriers and further encouraging students in their journey towards academic excellence.

“The outreach of SATHEE is an important step towards bridging the educational divide in India. We have created a platform that simplifies and enhances the learning process for competitive exams. Our focus is on delivering quality education in an accessible format. We believe SATHEE will be instrumental in helping students across the country to better prepare for their future, aligning with our mission of educational inclusivity and excellence,” said Shri. K Sanjay Murthy Secretary, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education.

SATHEE is not just a learning platform; it represents a movement towards equal educational opportunities for all, challenging the monopolization of competitive exam preparation by private classes that either many cannot afford or access easily due to distance. It offers a beacon of hope to millions of students, particularly those in rural areas and financially constrained environments.