Prof Theo Farrell VC La Trobe University further strengthens ASCRIN-Single Largest Intl Research Initiative with joint investment of over AUD $43 million (Rs 235 cr.)

| April 12, 2024 2:28:49 PM IST
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India PR Distribution

New Delhi [India], April 12: Australia's La Trobe University has identified key areas to further strengthen its long-standing commitment to Indian Research and Education partnerships during the recent visit by Professor Theo Farrell, new Vice-Chancellor, who headed the delegation to India. He met with a range of Industry, Government and Trade Representatives during a five-day visit to the country.

During his visit, Professor Farrell convened several Roundtable discussions with Partners, Industry and Government Representatives, on opportunities to collaborate on areas of mutual interest that address national priorities and that are important for Industry Innovation and Development.

Professor Farrell said there were several priority areas for La Trobe that presented opportunities for deepening relationships in India and developing new partnerships. Deepening mutual industry partnerships play to La Trobe's strengths in areas including Smart Cities, Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security, Bio-innovation, and in Health and Care innovation.

Opportunities for further collaboration and engagement were also discussed at a Leadership Roundtable of all member Universities of the Asian Smart Cities Research Innovation Network (ASCRIN), which was founded by La Trobe University in 2019 and is now its Single Largest Research Internationalisation Initiative with joint investment of more than AUD $43 million (Rs 235 crores

Kunal Kumar, Joint Secretary and Mission Director (Smart Cities Mission) at the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India has been a supporter of ASCRIN since its launch in 2019.

"ASCRIN is an exemplary initiative that brings together top researchers, industry and government together to solve some of the most pressing challenges of Urbanisation" Kumar said.

"The Government of India's Smart Cities Mission is one of the largest initiatives of its kind, aiming to transform 100 diverse cities across the country - however, we cannot do this alone."

"Initiatives such as ASCRIN can bring novel solutions with the potential to impact community and industry problems in the context of rapid urbanisation," Kumar Said.

"The Network, with over 250 researchers, has already made significant strides in curating a strong portfolio of impact-based projects aimed at enhancing sustainability, liveability, and efficiency of cities and towns in the region. Our vision is now to build on this and accelerate engagement with industry and government to fast-track commercialisation and adoption pathways," said Professor Aniruddha Desai, ASCRIN Founder and Co-Director of IIT Kanpur - La Trobe University Research Academy.

ASCRIN brings together a network of researchers, global industry partners, government collaborators and start-ups to advance research into smart city-related projects, helping to improve sustainability, liveability and efficiency of cities and towns in the region.

The Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS) last year joined other leading tertiary institutions, the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT-K) and Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani (BITS-Pilani) as partners in the Network, which already includes more than 250 researchers and over 70 Joint-PhD projects.

La Trobe has a proud and successful history in India, partnering with tertiary institutions and organisations on projects that benefit both countries, and helping develop India's brightest minds through joint education opportunities. La Trobe University continues to support and expand student exchanges in India and Australia; developing research focussed on digital technologies and skills innovations; research commercialisation opportunities, and linkages with industry partners.

The Network has over 50 projects underway that will make a tangible difference in the lives of people in India, including:

* Data-driven decision making to improve Dairy supply chains.

* Re-using construction and demolition waste to reduce landfill.

* Intelligent planning of energy grids to optimise consumption and reduce costs.

* Using sensors to improve indoor growing conditions of medicinal crops.

* Real-time crash prediction in traffic on urban roads and intersections to increase safety of all road users.

Media enquiries: Australia - Charisse Ede, M: +61 (0)404 030 698 or contact media@latrobe.edu.au, India - Achal K Paul, achal@buzzcomm.in, M: +91 98101 62377


La Trobe University and India

* La Trobe University is ranked in the top 1 per cent of Universities worldwide * Times Higher Education (THE), 2021, World University Rankings 2022; Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (CSIC), 2021, Ranking Web of Universities.

* La Trobe has a proud record of educating students from India, with almost 11,000 people born in India amongst our alumni.

* Dignitaries La Trobe University has hosted from the Indian subcontinent include Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Kapil Dev, Malaika Arora Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Rajkumar Hirani, Abhijat Joshi and, most recently, actor, producer and women's equality advocate, Shah Rukh Khan.

* La Trobe offers the Shah Rukh Khan La Trobe University PhD Scholarship, providing a life-changing opportunity for an aspiring female researcher from India to make a meaningful impact in the world.

* La Trobe University is one of only two universities in Australia teaching Hindi, and the only Australian University to teach a subject on the history, music, and storytelling of popular Hindi cinema.

* La Trobe University is one of the founding members of the Australia India Institute.

* The IIT Kanpur - La Trobe Research Academy was established in 2020.

* La Trobe has several long-standing teaching partnerships, including with Lady Shri Ram College, which has been running for more than 25 years.

* The La Trobe Library collection houses more than 38,000 volumes of monographs, journals, magazines and government publications from India, one of the largest collections in Australia.

* La Trobe has been a proud sponsor of the Indian Film Festival in Melbourne since it began in 2010.

Asian Smart Cities Research Innovation Network

ASCRIN, an initiative led by La Trobe, works with research focused groups, government, global industry partners and start-ups to develop solutions and evaluate implementation strategies, to improve the

sustainability, liveability and efficiency of Asian regions. This also includes a dedicated IIT Kanpur-La Trobe University Research Academy (ASCRIN's largest node in India).

The Network has more than 250 researchers from ASCRIN partner organisations, with more than 70 Joint-PhD projects approved and 45 students so far engaged in those projects, which are exploring issues like the socio-economic costs of road crashes in India, and how to make data driven quality management accessible to small dairy cooperatives in India.

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