Industry-academia collaboration in itself is a highly beneficial agreement for both parties. Industries benefit by receiving highly talented and skilled students who are in possession of the specific skillsets and talent to perform the tasks that the organisations requires.

Academia on the other hand will be able to learn of the inner workings of industries through their collaboration in order to form more relevant syllabuses and gain the most up-to-date information for research and academic purposes.

India’s Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry is taking this a step towards this as they are pushing to allow foreign students to work while pursuing higher education in India. The ministry has prepared a proposal for granting “limited work permit” to foreign students in selected areas and segments to increase their enrolment in higher education institutions in India.

The HRD Ministry will soon approach the Union Home Ministry with the proposal in hopes of easing visa rules for foreign students. Currently the Indian visa regime does not allow any work permit for international students.

“This issue will be relooked to allow limited work permit in selected areas/segments where there is an imbalance in demand and supply and shortage of trained or highly skilled human resources in India,” a ministry official said.

The Study in India programme that was launched several years ago has received more attention as of late from Modi’s government in order to attract more foreign students. The HRD ministry also wants change in the visa regime to allow paid internship for foreign students, which is currently not allowed.

This inability to participate and learn from internship programmes has been cited as one of the reasons that disincentivises international students from coming to India to study.

When executed successfully, the benefits from academic-industry collaborations are virtually irreplaceable despite the difficulties that are faced with such an undertaking. The ability to mould prospective employees and tailor their skills to an industry’s needs along with the potential innovations and solutions developed in academia is a rare and valuable opportunity.