Posted Tuesday 7 February 2017
As the UK forges a new economic role in the world following the EU referendum, strengthening our global links is more important than ever. India's rapid economic growth and growing middle class population highlight its importance as a key partner for the UK.
The report, Bridges to the Future: India, was presented by CBI Director, General Carolyn Fairbairn, at the meeting of the UK-India CEO forum in New Delhi in November 2016. Carolyn said that the UK is India's biggest investor among the G20 countries, supporting nearly 700,000 jobs. With higher education an increasing priority for India, the vibrant range of existing research partnerships, high-quality teaching and business incubators demonstrate how both nations can benefit from a closer working relationship.
The global trend of transnational education (TNE) has allowed partnerships between UK and Indian higher education institutions to deliver courses that are mutually beneficial. These include an enhanced student experience, greater internationalisation as well as access to a larger pool of academic expertise and students. Policies in the UK and India have given added impetus to the provision of TNE - particularly that foreign providers cannot operate independently in India. Kingston University's split site studying approach model has been profiled in the report.
Kingston Business School's partnership with SVKM's Institute of International Studies centres on a 2+1 arrangement, where students study business administration for the first two years of their degree course in India and the final year at Kingston Business School for the award of a BBA (Hons) degree. The collaboration has been running since 2006 and has received a complimentary review in a QAA visit - with over 500 students successfully passing through the programme. Stuart Fitzgerald is the Liaison Officer from Kingston Business School and visits SVKM 2-3 times a year, which is a crucial part of making the relationship work. For such a collaboration to be effective, close links are essential, especially between module leaders in the UK and tutors in India. This is maintained through comprehensive staff development arrangements, regular visits by Kingston's academic liaison officer and module leaders together with comprehensive moderation and careful quality control.
India's expanding commitment to higher education and research make it a natural fit with the UK's enterprising and internationally oriented universities. Businesses, government and universities all have a part to play in building this key axis of growth.