The HRD Ministry on Tuesday granted 'Institutions of Eminence' status to three public and three private institutes, enabling them to get full autonomy and special incentives to project them as 'world class universities'. Find out what are Institutions of Eminence!
The HRD Ministry on Tuesday granted ‘Institutions of Eminence’ status to three public and three private institutes, enabling them to get full autonomy and special incentives to project them as ‘world class universities’. The move came as part of a scheme of the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry to select 20 IoEs — 10 public and 10 private — which will enjoy complete academic and administrative autonomy.
The decision wasn’t received well by various quarters for selecting Jio Institute by Reliance Foundation in the private sector along with Manipal Academy of Higher Education and BITS Pilani. Jio Institute is yet to set up but was granted IOE status by the government. The University Grants Commission (UGC), a panel of which carried out the selections, defended the move by saying that the institution was accorded the coveted tag under greenfield category for new or proposed institutions that are yet to come into existence.
“As Jio institute is starting on a greenfield mode, they will only get ‘Letter of Intent’ which states they must set-up in 3 yrs. If they setup, then they get ‘IOA’ status, right now they don’t have the tag, they only have letter of intent,” said R Subramanyam, Secretary, Higher Education.
In the public sector, the government granted the status to IIT-Delhi, IIT-Bombay and the Bengaluru-based Indian Institute of Science (IISc). The controversy and debate had left some wondering as to what these Institutes of Eminence actually are!
What are Institutes of Eminence?
After no Indian University found a place in World University Rankings last year, the government proposed to set up Institutions of Eminence in India. Under this proposal, it planned to establish 20 such world class institutes in the country. A notification in this regard was released by University Grants Commission (UGC) in September, 2017.
“The lnstitution of Eminence shall continue to be ranked in the National institutional Ranking Framework and, within five years of notification, shall get itself ranked in an lnternational Ranking index of repute. lt should from then on continue to be ranked in the National and lnternational ranking frameworks,” it said.
UGC had also stated that an enabling regulatory architecture would be provided to 10 public and 10 private institutions which will help them the status of world-class teaching institutes. The initiative was undertaken by the body to provide quality education to Indian students irrespective of their financial background.
Which institutes can apply for the status?
The educational institutes selected, need to be a good mix of Central Universities as well as Arts, Management and Technical Institutes. To get the status, they should be among:
1. Top 50 in the National lnstitution Ranking Framework in their category
2. Top 500 in internationally recognised rankings like the Times Higher Education World University Rankings or Q
Public Institutes that are eligible to apply under Institutes of Eminence are as follows:
– Central Universities
– Government-owned and controlled Deemed to be Universities.
– lnstitutions of National lmportance such as IITs, NITs, etc.
– State Universities set up under a law made by Legislative Assembly of a State.
These institutes need to submit a proposal providing their action plan along with milestones and timelines. Apart from this, the institutes also need to mention the milestones they plan to achieve over the next 5 to 15 years.
This year as many as 114 institutes had applied for the tag including 11 central universities, 27 ‘institutes of national importance’, top IITs and NITs, 27 state universities, 10 private universities, and four greenfield institutes.
How are they different from other Universities?
The IOEs are proposed to enjoy greater autonomy compared to other higher education institutions. They will be free to decide their fee for domestic and foreign students, and have a flexible course duration and structure. These institutes will be exempt from approvals of government or UGC for academic collaborations with foreign institutions. However, institutions based on a list of negative countries prepared by the External Affairs and Home ministries will be exceptions.
The 10 public institutions which will be selected, will also get Rs 1,000 crore each from the HRD Ministry to achieve world-class status. The government will offer no financial assistance to the private institutions.