Union Education Ministry releases Rs 80 crore to IIT KGP for second phase of SPARC

    Kolkata, Dec 15 (PTI) The Union Ministry of Education
has released a grant of Rs 80 crore to IIT Kharagpur towards
the second phase of the Scheme for Promotion of Academic and
Research Collaboration (SPARC) Programme, an IIT Kharagpur
statement said.
    Adrijit Goswami from IIT Kharagpur, who is heading the
Pan India coordination of the programme, said the allocation
would help in promoting virtual and e-learning.
    "Going online is the new normal roadmap at least for
programmes like SPARC. While online mode has its drawbacks, on
the brighter side it may give rise to opportunities especially
for those who otherwise find such collaborative work arduous
due to physical visits," he was quoted as saying in the
statement on Monday.
    In one SPARC initiative, IIT Kharagpur organised the
international conference on 'Emerging Trends in Healthcare
Technology in Post-COVID-19 Era' with expert participation
from USA, UK, Australia, Sweden, South Africa, The
Netherlands, India.
    Goswami said, "with phase two funding of Rs 80 crore
and the structured format of e-workshops, webinars, online
classes and even research in virtual mode, the scope for
productive academic collaborations at the SPARC-approved
collaborating Institutes look promising."
    In 2019-20, more than 300 international experts
visited Indian institutions registered under SPARC for various
projects and workshops with near about 400 research proposals
approved for funding to date, the institute said.
    Speaking on SPARC which was launched in 2019-20 by the
Ministry of Education to promote research based learning, IIT
Kharagpur Director Virendra K Tewari said the resultant
figures are promising.
    In 2019-20 participation from the US, Australia and UK
witnessed highest visits covering close to 65 per cent of the
international faculty visitors in 2019-20.
    The slump in 2020 though was expected, work was
carried out through online conferences. PTI SUS

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)