South Asia Anglia Partnership is launched

Published: 20 September 2013 at 15:03

Anglia Ruskin joins forces with universities in Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka

Anglia Ruskin University has established the South Asia Anglia Partnership, an initiative to bring together Vice Chancellors from universities in Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to focus on the internationalisation of the student learning experience.

The South Asia Anglia Partnership met for the second time in Cambridge this week, following an inaugural meeting in New Delhi in April, and several specific projects that shared knowledge, expertise and resources were discussed.

The partnership examined ways of reducing the cost of an overseas education, for example by introducing an undergraduate Engineering programme that enabled students to study for three years in India and the final year in the UK, and a specialised MBA in Islamic Finance, where students study principles of Islamic finance for a year in Pakistan and complete their MBA at Anglia Ruskin.

They also discussed professional doctorate programmes that allowed researchers to gain expertise while continuing to work in their respective universities and countries; student and faculty exchange programmes; and joint research programmes in a variety of areas including medical, biodiversity and sustainability topics.

Home to nearly one quarter of the world’s population, South Asia’s rapid population growth has resulted in an increase in demand for Higher Education which educational institutions in the region have struggled to meet.  With this has come a host of challenges; scarcity of expert academics, higher teacher to student ratios and a shortage of research output both in terms of quantity and quality.

Institutions across the region have very similar opportunities and challenges but there was previously no regional initiative at HE level that focused on collaboration as a means of sharing their experiences and expertise.  Anglia Ruskin’s initiative provides institutions in the region with such a platform.  

The universities currently involved in the partnership are a selection of publicly funded and private institutions, each with a unique area of expertise.  The next meeting of the partnership is due to be hosted by Mysore University in India.

The participants in this week’s meetings were Professor K.S. Rangappa (Vice Chancellor, Mysore University, India), Dr Prem Nair (Medical Director, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, India), Professor S.H.Pawar (Vice Chancellor, D.Y.Patil University, India), Dr James Pitchai (Vice Chancellor, Bharathiar University, India), Dr Madhu Chitkara (Vice Chancellor, Chitkara University, India), Professor Md Abdus Sattar (Vice Chancellor, Britannia University, Bangladesh), Mr Emran Hossain (Member of the Board, Daffodil International University, Bangladesh), Maj Gen Milinda Peiris (Vice Chancellor, Sir John Kotlewala Defence University, Sri Lanka), Dr Hassan Murad (Vice Chancellor, University of Management and Technology, Pakistan), Dr Nisar Siddique (Vice Chancellor, Institute of Business Administration University, Pakistan) and Anglia Ruskin’s Vice Chancellor Professor Michael Thorne.