Monday, May 29, 2006

A tale of two IISERs

The goal is ambitious: two high-quality research institutions [Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research] exclusively offering Bachelor’s and Master’s programme in sciences to attract the best of 10+2 talent. And direct PhD programmes in frontier areas of science research. Student strength: 2,000 over the next five years, with 200-strong faculty.

But consider the progress:

  • Neither institute has a permanent campus nor permanent faculty.
  • Despite this, the HRD Ministry is trying to push through the first batch from this July in “makeshift and temporary locations”.
  • In Kolkata, for example, classes for the first batch of 70-odd students, selected via the IIT entrance exam, will be held in the Kolkata campus of IIT Kharagpur.
  • With no hostel ready, students will stay in nearby campus of National Institute of Technical Teachers’ Training and Research (NITTTR) at Salt Lake.
  • “We have just started the process of acquiring land (200 acres) in Kalyani (a Kolkata suburb), and hope to complete the modalities soon,” said IIT (Kharagpur) director Shishir K Dube, who is the project-director for setting up IISER (Kolkata).
  • Its counterpart in Pune, too, is in a hurry to start the first batch in August at the “temporary location” in National Chemical Laboratory (NCL) in Pune. “About 100 acres, adjacent to the NCL, have been acquired recently. But no work on the construction of the campus has started yet,” sources said.

From this story in today's Indian Express.


  1. Anonymous said...

    The IISERs seem to be shrouded in lots of mystery. Thye claim to develop an interdisciplinary and research based undergraduate program but no details are known.Does an IISER bulletin exist?

    How is the faculty recruitement process going on for IISER?Are the faculty at IISc involved in any form of mentoring for IISER?

  2. Anonymous said...

    This IISER business is getting murkier by the day. They do not have the infrastructure, faculty and apparantely no coherent plan of action. They dont even have a website ! :) The huury in which they are commencing classes is very strange indeed and in my view is unfair to the first few batches of students.

  3. Anonymous said...

    Looks like IISER has only bits and pieces of information. Here is a link.

    Although the focus is on basic sciences, the website also mentions engineering and computational sciences (See Modalities). That would be interesting.
    I am hoping IISER does live up to its expectations and vision.

    Here is another interesting link from Indian Express today: