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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Australian India Water Centre, IIT-G explore innovative water solutions

The “Water Matters for India” initiative under the AWP project is also delivering the ‘Innovative Young Water Professional’ (IYWP) training to 20 young water professionals under 35 years.


A four-member Australian delegation led by High Commissioner of Australia to India, Barry O’ Farrell, on February 22, visited the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati (IIT-G), to discuss several projects of cooperation in various domains including water conservation and trade and commerce.

Following the customary welcome of the delegation, director of the institute, TG Sitharam made a presentation on the Australia India Water Centre (AIWC), Global Center for Transdisciplinary Research in Water (GCTRW, Tri-Water), including several initiatives such as Sustainable Water Futures Programme and Water Matters for India.

Adding that collaborations are crucial for meeting sustainable development goals amidst emerging challenges of climate change, he highlighted major strides taken by IIT-G in global rankings and underlined the importance of the liberal arts programme.

Farrell emphasised the importance of cooperation in multidisciplinary areas, particularly through the MAITRI scholarships, liberal arts, research grants and cultural exchange.

Besides Farell, Australian Consulate-General, Kolkata, Rowan Ainsworth, First Secretary to Australian High Commissioner, Paroksh Prasad, and Angelina Nair, the senior research and visits officer of the Australian Consulate-General (Kolkata), were part of the delegation.

Ainsworth noted there is “immense opportunity for collaboration in the areas of disaster management, trade and commerce, development of the Northeast region and the Indian Ocean”, reiterating that the AIWC will show the way forward in research on the world’s most important resource – water.

The AIWC is developing the AIWC Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma and the Master’s Programme in sustainable water futures, which are presently online, and additionally, organising two workshops – Groundwater Sustainability and Water Policy – under the technical exchange programme in the subject between Australia and India from April to May, this year.

Notably, the Australian Water Partnership (AWP) has released funding of $275,000 to the AIWC from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to run a 10 month-long course programme for young water professionals from December 2021 to November 2022.

The Master of Sustainable Water Futures programme targets the capacity building of water professionals to contribute towards sustainable development, underpinned by a “trans-disciplinary approach” for innovative water solutions.

Through the GCTRW, Tri-Water, the IIT-G conducts collaborative and interdisciplinary research on water science, technology and policy in order to equip a new generation of water researchers for a meaningful contribution to address water challenges.

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