University of Oxford to establish India Business Centre

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New Delhi, Jan 21: The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, Dr John Hood today announced the establishment of the Oxford University India Business Centre (OUIBC) during a visit to New Delhi.

The Centre, which will be located at Saƒ¯d Business School in Oxford, will address major business issues through collaborative research between academics in Oxford, India and elsewhere. Alongside research and teaching at Oxford, the centre will develop a range of custom and open executive education programmes which will be delivered in India through a new facility in Lavasa, near Pune.

The facility is part of a new hill station being developed by the Lavasa Corporation Ltd, part of the Hindustan Construction Company.

A scooping study with companies located in India and elsewhere is underway to begin development of these education programmes, which will first be delivered in early 2010.

OUIBC has been generously supported by Ajit Gulabchand, Chairman of Lavasa Corporation. As part of his support of the Centre, Gulabchand is to endow a new chair - The Ajit Gulabchand Professor of Indian Business Studies at the University of Oxford.

The new Professor will be based at the Saƒ¯d Business School in Oxford, and it is envisaged that the appointment will be made for the next academic year.

In announcing this initiative, Dr John Hood, said: "The primary objective of this research centre is to learn from India's business success. A clear understanding of the issues faced by India and their innovative solutions, as India transitions from poverty to prosperity, will form a guide to future generations of countries attempting similar transitions."

The University of Oxford has had a long and rich relationship with India - the first India students came to Oxford in 1871. Just 12 years later, the University founded the Indian Institute at Oxford, with the support of Indian government and business leaders.

In more recent times, the University of Oxford has made strengthening its relationship with India one of its key priorities. Through new posts, scholarship programmes, academic and cultural exchanges, the University is committed to expanding and invigorating the connections with India that have enriched the University's intellectual heritage for more than 400 years.

The new Oxford University India Business Centre is the latest part of this developing relationship and will engage directly many of our academics from throughout the University in cross-disciplinary research.'

Speaking on the occasion, Ajit Gulabchand of Lavasa Corporation, said, "It is a matter of great pride for Lavasa to have partnered with the most respected educational institution in the world. This will open new paradigms of educational and managerial excellence for students in both countries."

"Our collaboration with the University of Oxford is in line with Lavasa's vision to provide an appropriate atmosphere for enabling high quality research. Lavasa will adequately support the infrastructural needs of the new executive education activities. The new Centre is in line with Lavasa's concept of Live, Work, Learn and Play", Gulachand added.

Professor Colin Mayer, Dean of the Sa?d Business School said: "We are enormously grateful to Lavasa Corporation, in making the establishment of this important Centre possible."

The purpose of the Centre is to address major business policy questions in India through collaborative research between academics in Oxford, in India, and from around the world, and to engage practitioners and policymakers actively in formulating a research agenda that will be relevant and significant.

Besides the generation of research-based projects, the Centre will be concerned with teaching and will provide doctoral programmes for students and scholarships for our degree programmes in Oxford.

"We will also develop a range of executive education programmes for practitioners to be delivered in India. We will welcome the involvement of both practitioners and visiting academics with the work of the Centre, as well as the contributions of colleagues from throughout the University of Oxford, who have an interest in these issues," Mayer said.

Ajit Gulabchand and Dr John Hood will sign the official Memorandum of Agreement at The World Economic Forum at Davos on January 25.


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