Huge delegation of universities in the US forges ties with India in education, research

Delegation co-led by Indiana University president Michael McRobbie.

By Deepak Chitnis

WASHINGTON, DC: A delegation, consisting of higher-ups in some of the biggest educational institutions and organizations in the US, were in New Delhi, India to build ties with leaders in the country’s government, education, and technology sectors.

The delegation, which was led by Indiana University president Dr. Michael A. McRobbie and Internet2 president and CEO H. David Lambert, established a partnership with India’s National Knowledge Network (NKN), the largest national research and education network in the country. They were in India from March 20-21.

Internet2 is a US facsimile of NKN, a community of leaders in research, academia, industry and government who have come together to advance the use of cutting-edge technology in these arenas. Founded in 1996, it boasts a membership of 252 US-based universities, 82 “leading” corporations, 68 affiliate members, 41 regional and state networks, and over 65 national research and education partners from more than 100 countries around the world.

“The advanced networking partnership between Internet2 and the NKN will enable American and Indian scientists to collaborate in major new ways and use it to drive new growth and research innovations for generations to come,” said McRobbie in a press release, put out in anticipation of the delegation’s visit to the subcontinent. “Indeed, it promises to have an enormous impact in a wide range of areas that enhanced the quality of life for people in both of our countries and around the world.”

In addition to the partnership signing, the Indian government’s primary scientific adviser, Dr. Rajagopala Chidambaram, gave a presentation to the visiting US dignitaries about NKN and its pivotal role in creating change within India’s education and technology infrastructures. Dr. Sam Pitroda, the adviser to India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, also chaired a panel discussion between academic leaders from both countries.

The US universities include New York University, the University of Chicago, Arizona State University, and Penn State University.

Several Indian-origin higher-ups from the US also made the trip, including OARnet executive director Pankaj Shah and Internet2 consultant Ashok Kolaskar. Himadri B. Pakrasi, the director of the International Center for Advanced Renewable Energy and Sustainability (I-CARES) at Washington University at St. Louis, was also part of the envoy, as were Tripti Sinha with the University of Maryland, and the University of Buffalo’s president, Dr. Satish Tripathi.

The full list of delegates can be read below:

  • Dr. Michael A. McRobbie, President, Indiana University;
  • Dr. Satish K. Tripathi, President, University at Buffalo;
  • H. David Lambert, President and CEO, Internet2;
  • Tom Delaney, Vice President for Global Technology & Chief Global Technology Officer, New York University;
  • Heather Stewart, Associate Vice President for Global Technology, New York University;
  • Elias G. Eldayrie, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, University of Florida;
  • Klara Jelinkova, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, University of Chicago;
  • Tripti Sinha, Assistant Vice President and Deputy CIO, Division of Information Technology, Executive Director of Mid-Atlantic Crossroads (MAX), University of Maryland;
  • Scott Studham, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, University of Minnesota;
  • Brad Wheeler, Vice President for Information Technology & CIO, Indiana University;
  • Shawn Reynolds, Associate Vice President for International Partnerships at Indiana University;
  • Michael Dodson, Director, Dhar India Studies Program, Indiana University;
  • Gordon Wishon, Chief Information Officer, Arizona State University;
  • Patton Fast, Chief Technology Officer, University of Minnesota;
  • Himadri B. Pakrasi, Director, International Center for Advanced Renewable Energy and Sustainability (I-CARES), Washington University;
  • Jacqui Montgomery, Research Associate, Pennsylvania State University;
  • Pankaj Shah, Executive Director, OARnet;
  • Stephen Wolff, Chief Technology Officer, Internet2;
  • Rob Vietzke, Vice President, Network Services, Internet2;
  • Ashok Kolaskar, Consultant, Internet2;
  • Edward Moynihan, Global Program Manager, Internet2

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