A 15-member team of officials from the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to India, New Delhi, and constituent nations of EU, visited Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham and Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Center, Kochi, from November 23-24, 2017. The aim of the visit was to deepen cooperation with the Indian research and academic community, explore opportunities for collaboration and exchange with European nations and promote Indian participation in the EU's Research Framework Programme, such as Horizon 2020, Marie Curie Actions, etc., in areas such as water, energy, health and societal benefits.

The EU delegation team was headed by Ms. Tania Friederichs, First Counsellor and Head of Research & Innovation, Delegation of the European Union to India and comprised of science, technology and innovation counsellors, attaches and directors of institutes from ten European countries, including France, Italy, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Sweden and the British High Commission.

Some of the focus areas of the Delegation of the European Union to India for collaboration and funding opportunities under the aegis of EU's Research Framework Programme were: Information and Communication Technologies (ICT); nanotechnologies, advanced materials, advanced manufacturing and processing and biotechnology. Also included were: health, demographic change and wellbeing; food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry; marine, maritime and inland water research and the bio-economy, as well as secure, clean and efficient energy, smart, green and integrated transport, climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials.

The delegation also spoke about the upcoming call for proposals on water cooperation which focuses on water purification and wastewater management, involving expertise on technology and biotechnology. Additionally, the team discussed cooperation with European institutions focusing on antibiotic resistance and rational use of antibiotics.

“During our two day visit to Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham campuses, I was very impressed to learn about Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham’s collaboration with European Commission funded projects. It was interesting to know that they have been participating in FP6 & FP7 calls since 2006. The purpose of our visit is to enhance collaboration on research, technology and innovation between India and European researchers. We are also looking to publicize opportunities on transfer of technology. European institutions have massively invested in research and innovation. We are looking for cooperation for transfer of technology which can be replicated in India in affordable ways,” shared Ms. Tania Friederichs, First Counsellor and Head of Research & Innovation, Delegation of the European Union to India.

“There is an immense scope for researchers in India and Europe to come together to discover and innovate, and help solve the world’s problems. We eagerly look forward to such collaboration opportunities. Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham is a research powerhouse. Since its inception in 2003, it has been visited by over 600 research scholars, served by over 700 faculty with PhDs, and produced over 12,000 publications. Amrita’s 40 Centers of Excellence in Research have received over 40,000 citations in leading International journals / conference proceedings, and filed over 100 patent applications,13 of which have been granted. We have also received over Rs. 250 crores in research funding,” said Dr. Maneesha V. Ramesh, Dean of Amrita Center for International Programs and Director of Amrita Center for Wireless Networks and Applications, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Amritapuri Campus.

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