HRD Ministry launches the web portal of SPARC scheme

The Union Minister of HRD, Prakash Javadekar launched the web portal of the scheme – “Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC) in New Delhi. The SPARC scheme aims at improving the research ecosystem of India’s higher educational institutions by facilitating academic and research collaborations between Indian Institutions and the best institutions in the world. The objective of Impactful Policy Research in Social Sciences is to identify and fund research proposals in social sciences with maximum impact on governance and society. The scheme was sanctioned by the Indian Government in August 2018 at a total cost of Rs 418 crore. The scheme will be implemented at a total cost of ₹414 crore till March 2021.

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  • The Union Minister of HRD, Prakash Javadekar launched the web portal of the scheme
  • It is for the Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC) in New Delhi.
  • The SPARC scheme aims at improving the research ecosystem of India’s higher educational institutions.
  • The objective of Impactful Policy Research in Social Sciences is to identify and fund research proposals in social sciences with maximum impact on governance and society.
  • The scheme will be implemented at a total cost of ₹414 crore till March 2021.
  • 254 top Indian Institutes and 478 top ranked global Institutes have been already identified.
  • The 28 selected nations include Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, UK and the US.
  • The role of the institutions mainly include to help, handhold and coordinate with willing Participating Indian Institutions

The scheme will focus on broad thematic areas such as state and democracy, urban transformation; media, culture, and society; employment, skills and rural transformation; governance; innovation and public policy; macro-trade and economic policy and social media and technology. The scheme is expected to have a major impact in providing the best international expertise to address major national problems, expose Indian academicians to the best collaborators abroad, enable international faculty to stay in India for a longer duration, provide Indian students an opportunity to work in the world-class laboratories, to develop strong bilateral relationships in research and improve the international ranking of Indian Institutes.

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HRD 

The Ministry of Human Resource Development, formerly the Ministry of Education is responsible for the development of human resources in India. The Ministry is divided into two departments: the Department of School Education and Literacy, which deals with primary, secondary and higher secondary education, adult education and literacy, and the Department of Higher Education, which deals with the university education, technical education, scholarship etc. The erstwhile Ministry of Education now functions under these two departments.

The Ministry is headed by the cabinet-ranked Minister of Human Resources Development, a member of the Council of Ministers. The current HRD minister is Prakash Javadekar.

SPARC Scheme

Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC) is a scheme which will encourage research collaborations between Indian universities and some of the leading universities of the world. The SPARC scheme is furthering the already launched GYAN scheme. Rs. 418 crores have been allotted for this scheme. Under this scheme, funding would be provided under three categories – below 50 lakhs, below 75 lakhs, and below 1 crore (project funding). The quality benchmark for SPARC is that only such Indian institutes can apply which are in top 100 NIRF ranking or top 100 NIRF subject ranking. For foreign universities, the benchmark is either top 500 of QS ranking or top 200 of QS subject ranking.

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