Guwahati, 1st December: A memorandum of understanding has been signed between IIT Guwahati and IIT BHU, Varanasi, to offer a joint doctoral programme from July 2021.

Directors of both the institutes, Prof. T.G. Sitharam, Director, IIT Guwahati, and Prof. Pramod Kumar Jain, Director, IIT (BHU), said this is the first time in the country that two IITs have come together to offer a joint degree programme, an official statement said.

The idea of a joint PhD programme was originally proposed by Prof Sitharam in 53rd IIT council meeting held on September 27, the move triggered by a vision to build a “Network of Excellence” of all IITs rather than each one striving to become a “Tower of Excellence”.

The IIT council accepted the proposal to start the joint degree programmes. Through this academic collaboration, both the institutes are expecting a significant boost in high-quality research and foundation for further academic collaborations.

Under the National Education Policy (NEP2020), such educational reforms and academic collaborations between premier educational institutes will promote multidisciplinary academic programmes and research for encouraging and promoting a knowledge-based economy of the country.

IIT (BHU) is considering starting a joint MTech programme on similar lines to provide multi-institutional and multidisciplinary MTech programmes. IIT Guwahati has also agreed to be part of this initiative, the statement said.

IIT Guwahati, established in 1994, is working towards augmenting critical science research initiatives, among others, in genomics, developmental biology, healthcare and bioinformatics, flexible electronics, advanced functional materials, sustainable polymers, rural technologies, disaster resilience and risk reduction, and water resources and management.

IIT Guwahati is poised to scale newer heights through all-round growth and development,” the statement said.