Dr Balvinder Shukla Vice Chancellor, Amity University, UPThe Indian education sector has been recognized as a “Sunrise Sector” for investment in the recent past. The higher education sector, owing to its huge potential, holds very promising prospects. Despite some inherent concerns with respect to choice of entity, not for profit character and foreign investment in formal education space; the industry does offer various innovative business opportunities, which can be explored for establishing a presence. The Government of India has recently reignited its reforms agenda by opening up certain sensitive sectors to foreign investment such as retail and civil aviation, which should ideally result in increased economic activity and employment generation. In order to capitalize on this huge employment opportunity, we believe the Government should take such a positive step in the higher education sector also by reducing the complexities governing foreign investment. This should also help the Government in achieving its aggressive goals of access, equity and excellence in higher education. Over the past few decades, the global economy has shifted from being manufacturing-centric to a knowledge-driven one. Success in leveraging knowledge and innovation is only possible with a sound infrastructure of higher education. A successful education policy forms the foundation of all fields of national development including political, social, economic, technical, scientific, and environmental. Thus, the higher the quality of university education in a country, the more prosperous and competitive are the people.
Speedy implementation must There is a growing realization that if India has to achieve a leadership role in the global knowledge economy a substantial part of the public funding must flow into the education sector through not-for-profit private participation. The education sector must be given a budgetary allocation of 6% of GDP to address the needs of primary, secondary, tertiary and higher education sector. The “Universities for Research and Innovation Bill, 2012”, provides for establishment and incorporation of Universities for Research and Innovation, in both public and private sector to create institutions of globally recognized quality in teaching, learning and research. Unfortunately, the fate of Bill is still not known. Couples of other bills were introduced in the parliament, which are either pending or need to be re-examined or allowed to be lapsed as these are draconian Bills, which, if allowed in its present form, would badly affect private investments in education sector.
Don’t undermine private entities The overwhelming response of private promoters, in making meaningful contribution to higher and technical education sector, despite facing continued adversities and onslaughts of governmental agencies, ought to have been recognized by the government. The statutory authorities undermine the contribution of private sector without realizing that the private sector had to step in as the government failed to provide required infrastructural facilities. Therefore be recognized and any policy planning that is devoid of private participation, will only remain on paper. The cash trapped state governments will never be able to invest into matching the growing needs of this sector, arising out of high inspirational level of middle class, a ballooning demographic power of Indian youth. It is high time to appreciate the contribution of private sector in education and schemes like PPP must be encouraged to promote skills development and training for keeping future work force ready for employment, as 50 million jobs are likely to be created by the present regime in the next five years.
Transparent fund allocation The new flagship scheme - Rashtriya Ucchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) of Ministry of HRD, Government of India, introduced under 12th Plan requires re-examination for effective RUSA, which focused on Access, Equity and Quality. According to OECD analysis, quality and equity are twin objectives that are best pursued and also can be achieved together. RUSA aims to bring paradigm and strategic shift in approach with respect to increase in fund allocation, fostering autonomy, integrating research with teaching, internationalization, creating cluster of institutions, promoting innovation, research, improved governance, carrying out educational reforms in academics & examination and strengthening States’ machineries through decentralization and higher fund allocation. The strategy and guiding principles of RUSA mission will certainly help creating a level playing field, ensuring quality and transparency in governance of all institutions at State level. The approach of RUSA is also intended to reduce affiliation burden of University which get bogged down by administrative activities. It aims to introduce cluster approach whereby University takes over control of cluster, networked institutes, neighborhood colleges and constituent colleges, with maximum students’ strength not exceeding 50,000. While these are well intended and well defined objectives, the implementation will always remain a concern. The overhauling of present system will require major policy changes and legislative decisions on statutory amendments. The fund allocation for RUSA vis a vis UGC ought to be clarified. The inclusion of education under GATS of WTO and the compliance of selected commitments by member nations would require urgent attention as India is yet to make commitments. Irrespective of India’s stand on GATS, the mobility of students and professionals across the globe and cross border education is widely accepted and acknowledged. India’s funding in education sector hovers around 3.85% of GDP of which only 1.25% of GDP is dedicated to higher education with negligible share of technical education. It is, however, expected to reach up to 6% of GDP onwards the XIIth and XIIIth plans.
Minuscule technological support In an increasingly dominated world - by technological innovation and ICTs, the public and private universities are contemplating how to take better advantage of established and emerging technologies to enhance learning and skills development of the students, thereby increasing the number of research publications, and conducting socially relevant, and purposeful research of desired quality. Unfortunately, the government support to private Universities for above is negligible. If support is provided then there will be better academic aura for:
The fundamental challenge facing society, economy and higher education are the need for research into intractable global issues on the one side, and access and equity on the other. Higher education has continued to expand and diversify, with increasing international competition. Internationalization and Research has always been extremely important for institutions and for individual academics, which must 'publish or perish'. Fundamental research, inter-disciplinarily and the role of higher education in culture and innovation, to policies, changing business models, the role of the non-profit sector, technological advances and growing international competition are other issues. Our country largely revolves around the following points in higher education: financing Higher Education, expansion and accessibility, quality assurance and relevance, Information & Communication Technology (ICT), building a skilled human capital, and most importantly, research.
A set of initiatives required are immediately emulsifying and combat issues related to higher education sector include: Realigning of higher education with employment market; Expanding through non-state resources; and harmonising processes for global integration. Today India faces a crossroads, as a global knowledge economy demands a new level of knowledge, skills, and abilities on the part of our citizens. Just as in earlier critical moments in our nation’s history when federal initiatives expanded the role of education, Acts in the 19th century provided higher education to the masses, universal access to secondary education in the early 20th century, a major expansion of educational opportunity could have extraordinary impact on the future of the nation. It is time for the government to take bold action, completing in a sense the series of these earlier education initiatives, by providing all citizens with universal access to lifelong learning opportunities, thereby enabling participation in the world’s most advanced knowledge and learning society. It is expected that our government supports a world-class system of higher capable of meeting the changing educational, research, and service needs of the nation. Our higher education must re-establish through its quality, nimbleness, innovation, efficiency, responsiveness and accountability its fundamental purpose as a public good, serving all of society, in addition to the private benefits it provides its students and other patrons. It must sustain and enhance the world’s leading system of research universities, capable of attracting and educating the world-class scientists, engineers, and other knowledge professionals while providing and applying the new knowledge necessary for national prosperity and security through basic research, development, and innovation.
Your brochure has been successfully mailed to your registered email id .
The Question containing Inaapropriate or Abusive Words
Question lacks the basic details making it difficult to answer
Topic Tagged to the Question are not relevant to Question
Question drives traffic to external sites for promotional or commercial purposes
The Question is not relevant to User
Regular exam updates, QnA, Predictors, College Applications & E-books now on your Mobile