Australian varsities want visa norms relaxed for India for two-way flow of PhD scholars

By 2016 a total of 1,093 Indian students were enrolled in PhD in Australia as against one researcher from that country studying in India

In a report put together by Indian and Australian academics, the Group of Eight identified lack of finance and awareness and other logistical barriers as a few of the obstacles hampering the vice versa flow of PhD students.(Getty Images/iStockphoto)
New Delhi The Group of Eight (Go8), which comprises eight of Australia’s research universities, has advocated relaxed visa norms between Australia and India for students seeking to do PhD in either country.
In a report put together by academics of both the countries and launched on Monday, the body identified lack of finance and awareness and other logistical barriers as a few of the obstacles hampering the vice versa flow of PhD students.
The report also recommended to the Australian government to establish a “special class of visa for researchers and Ph.D graduates”.
“As the Indian government has launched a number of initiatives to reform Indian economy, Make in India being of foremost importance, we have looked at how Indian companies and Australian companies based in India can jointly sponsor Indian students to students to study on PhD projects relevant to their businesses,” Vicki Thomson, Go8 CEO, said at the launch.
Director of Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Devang Khakhar, spoke of the need for PhD holders in India to fulfil the burgeoning requirement of faculties in education institutions.
“There is a great need of PhDs as the number of institutes of learning have increased in India and these would be needing faculty members,” Khakhar, one of the members of the team which wrote the report, said.
Khakhar later told IANS that IIT Bombay has been running a joint PhD programme with Monash University of Australia for 11 years and from this year on it will invite Australian students to do their PhDs here. Earlier, only Indian students were benefiting from the joint PhD programme.
According to the numbers cited in the report, by 2016 a total of 1,093 Indian students were enrolled in PhD in Australia -- a number which has increased by over 60% since 2006.
However, the report mentioned the number of PhD students formed only a small part of the entire Indian student body.
On the other hand, as per the 2015-16 Human Resource Development Ministry’s report, only one candidate from Australia was enrolled in a PhD programme in India.
 Resouces : Hindustan Times

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