The Ministry of Human Resource Development has constituted the Council for Industry & Higher Education Collaboration (CIHEC) which will identify issues and opportunities and facilitate development of strategies and innovative instruments of collaboration between Industry and Academia and endeavor to mobilize additional resources to support these initiatives.
The Ministry of HRD is also funding research in the Social Sciences and Humanities through its various research councils, viz., the Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS), the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), the Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR), the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) and the National Council of Rural Institutes (NCRI).
The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) had set up a Task Force for rejuvenation of Basic Scientific Research in Indian Universities. Based on its recommendations, action for strengthening science based education and research in Universities has been initiated.
The Government has taken various measures for the promotion and growth of research in the country. In scientific areas, these include the continuous increase in successive plan allocations for scientific departments, the setting up of new institutions for science education and research, the creation of centres of excellence and facilities in emerging and frontline areas in academic and national institutes, the establishment of new and attractive fellowships, strengthening of the infrastructure of Research & Development (R&D) in universities, encouraging public-private R&D partnerships, the recognition of R&D units and national awards for outstanding R&D for industries etc.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has been providing financial assistance under its Special Assistance Programme (SAP) to university departments to put in place facilities to accelerate research in the country. The UGC has been taking steps to encourage students to undertake research work. It has started the following schemes for promoting research work in universities: Infrastructure grants to Centre of Advanced Study (CAS)/Departmental Special Assistance (DSA)/ Departmental Research Support (DRS/Non-SAP Departments); Infrastructure grants to College with Potential for Excellence/Autonomous Colleges Minor and Major Research Projects; Infrastructure Grants to National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) accredited colleges, Networking Resource Centres, Dr. D.S Kothari Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Research Fellowship in Sciences for Meritorious Students, Basic Scientific Research, emeritus fellowships, etc. In addition, the UGC is providing fellowships to those candidates who have qualified the UGC National Eligibility Test (NET)/UGC-Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) NET.
Under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), the overall quality of existing State higher educational institutions is sought to be improved by ensuring their conformity to prescribed norms and standards and adoption of accreditation as a mandatory quality assurance framework. RUSA inter-alia provides funding under the component Research, Innovation and Quality improvement.
This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Irani in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha question.