“This would reinterpret the concept of a university as not just a traditional, physical space of learning, but as a repository of knowledge and information that can be delivered in multiple ways and can be accessed from anywhere and anytime” He explained.
As addressing a conference on 'One Globe 2012':United Knowledge Communities organized by the US-India Business Council, he said “The 21st century Meta-University would be a network and an ecosystem rather than a single brick and mortar space. Though the internet and technology are fundamental to this conception of the meta-university, at the crux is not a new technology but a 'new pedagogy' that is more in tune with the requirements of the knowledge society of the 21st century”.
Around ten foreign universities that the Institute of International Education is bringing from the US are participating in the two-day conference. Referring to the announcement made by the PM 2 months ago on the formation of a Meta-University with the broadband backbone inking institutions of excellence in specific fields of knowledge. He said “To give this idea a shape we have mounted a National Mission On Education through ICT to link in 25,000 colleges and 2,000 polytechnics for enabling e-learning and content sharing”.
The minister said that there is a need to open the doors to reputed foreign education institutions to usher in global competition in the higher education sector as well as to expand its base. He said that the government is seeking to open up establishment of foreign educational institutions in India through enactment of a Foreign Education Providers act, which will allow for 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) in higher education.
Sibal said; “We are also aiming to establish at least 50 research parks for quality research programmes. But, we are depending heavily on the private sector to come forward and participate in this endeavor. A second wave of creating institution of excellence has been initiated by starting 8 Indian Institute of Technologies, 5 Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research, 16 central Universities, 2schools of Planning and Architecture, 3 Indian Institute of Management and 10 National Institutes of Technologies. The 14 innovation universities are also on smithy for setting up benchmarks in education and research”.