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India seems to be very ambitious in the field of higher education and research. Recently two cooperation agreements have been renewed. One of them is a partnership and collaboration agreement at the institutional level between Universities Australia and the Association of Indian Universities. Meanwhile, an Education Cooperation Arrangement has been signed at the national level by the Minister of Human Resources Development of the Government of India and the Ministers of Education and of Tertiary Education of the New Zealand Government.
The Australian-Indian partnership intends to support academic links between universities through enhanced information and knowledge sharing, focusing on quality assurance, staff development, university management, staff and student exchanges and academic research. The New Zealand-India agreement is much broader in scope. In addition to higher education and research it aims to encourage cooperation in the areas of technical and vocational education, open and distance learning, research cooperation, teacher education and development as well as quality assurance and qualifications recognition.
In the globalised and increasingly interconnected world of education these partnerships can facilitate deeper intercultural understanding in addition to the direct benefits they provide to teaching and learning. Furthermore, such cooperation can also be a fruitful business, as long as Australia’s and New Zealand’s supply meets the demand from India.