UGC plans pro­gramme on trans-dis­ci­plinary re­search

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - - NATION - Aman­deep Shukla aman­[email protected]


NEWDELHI: The Uni­ver­sity Grants Com­mis­sion (UGC) is plan­ning to launch an am­bi­tious scheme to pro­mote trans-dis­ci­plinary re­search, an of­fi­cial aware of the mat­ter said.

Called Stride — Scheme for Trans-dis­ci­plinary Re­search through Higher Ed­u­ca­tion In­sti­tutes for Na­tional De­vel­op­ment and En­trepreneur­ship — the nearly ~500 crore pro­gramme will sup­port the ef­forts of stu­dents and fac­ulty in uni­ver­si­ties and col­leges to dis­cover new ar­eas of knowl­edge.

Trans-dis­ci­plinary re­search is a team ef­fort by in­ves­ti­ga­tors from dif­fer­ent dis­ci­plines to cre­ate new con­cep­tual and the­o­ret­i­cal in­no­va­tions that go be­yond the con­fines of a sub­ject-spe­cific ap­proach, a UGC of­fi­cial said, not wish­ing to be named. “Stride will sup­port trans-dis­ci­plinary re­search and so­cially in­clu­sive in­no­va­tions for na­tional de­vel­op­ment and en­trepreneur­ship. New ideas, con­cepts and prac­tices for pub­lic good and strength­en­ing civil so­ci­ety will be en­cour­aged,” the of­fi­cial said.

The scheme en­vis­ages ex­change be­tween fac­ulty from uni­ver­si­ties and top col­leges and sci­en­tists from na­tional bod­ies such as Coun­cil of Sci­en­tific and In­dus­trial Re­search, In­dian Coun­cil of Med­i­cal Re­search, In­dian Coun­cil of Agri­cul­tural Re­search, DRDO, Isro, Depart­ment of Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy, Depart­ment of Biotech­nol­ogy etc for spe­cific pe­ri­ods. A unique as­pect of Stride is its open na­ture, the of­fi­cial added. While it would pro­mote re­search in a range of ar­eas from phi­los­o­phy, his­tory, ar­chae­ol­ogy, an­thro­pol­ogy, psy­chol­ogy, In­dol­ogy, lib­eral arts, lan­guages, cul­ture, law, ed­u­ca­tion, jour­nal­ism and mass com­mu­ni­ca­tion, en­vi­ron­ment and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment, it would not be con­fined to these. “Since the idea is to pro­mote trans-dis­ci­plinary re­search, ar­ti­fi­cial sub­ject bound­aries would not be the con- fine. There is no strait­jacket.”

One of Stride’s aims is to en­sure that the re­search done is of prac­ti­cal util­ity. The pro­gramme will sup­port ba­sic, ap­plied and trans­for­ma­tional ac­tion re­search to sup­port govern­ment poli­cies. “The high­light of this scheme is its flex­i­bil­ity. Re­search that is so­cially rel­e­vant to ini­tia­tives which ad­dress lo­cal, na­tional or global needs will be en­cour­aged,” UGC of­fi­cial said.

R Subrah­manyam, sec­re­tary (higher ed­u­ca­tion) in the Union hu­man re­source de­vel­op­ment min­istry, said the UGC ap­proved the scheme on Jan­uary 29. In­der Mo­han Ka­pahy, a for­mer UGC mem­ber, said, “This is wel­come for en­cour­ag­ing co­op­er­a­tive ef­forts of na­tional-level rep­utable spe­cialised in­sti­tu­tions with uni­ver­si­ties and col­leges. In the re­cent past, the bulk of ef­forts had been to en­cour­age only top in­sti­tu­tions like IITS ,IIMS and other such elite in­sti­tu­tions. In­dian IHES can ex­cel in fields like his­tory, ar­chae­ol­ogy, phi­los­o­phy, lin­guis­tics, etc. So far, the fo­cus had been only on sci­ence, tech­nol­ogy, man­age­ment. Ex­pand­ing the area of fo­cus is good.”

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