May/June 2011

The Centre has been extremely busy and productive this spring. Activities fit within the following categories: research, establishing linkages, community outreach, organizing policy conferences, assisting with the Year of India in Canada 2011.

In the area of research, Dr. Robin Sinha has put together a major research project in the area of the environment. Carleton led the Canadian delegation to the World Renewable Energy Technology Conference in Delhi. Dr. Fraser Taylor has worked assiduously in the area of geospatial mapping and devices with colleagues in Canada and India and his work has been recognized with several grants. Dr. David Rogers in Physics spent a semester in India collaborating on projects in medical physics. Dr. Jay Drydyk in Philosophy was a guest at several conferences in India. Faculty in English, Philosophy and Music also made research trips to India and presented papers at conferences. Dr. Anil Maheshwari in the School of Computer Science received a grant to host several post-doctoral students from India.

To further establish linkages with universities and agencies in India, our Board Chair, Ms. Gisèle Samson-Verreault visited Delhi and Mumbai. Mr. Goldy Hyder, chair of the Community Relations and Advancement Committee of the Board, visited Hyderabad where he delivered a major speech at the Indo-Global Education Summit. Mr. Randy Zadra, Director of Carleton International, visited a number of universities across the country as well as several government ministries. Dr. Jag Humar, Distinguished Research Professor in Civil Engineering, also worked on several agreements in Mumbai and Delhi. Drs. Vinod and Uma Kumar, senior professors in the Sprott School of Business, visited several universities to establish linkages with Carleton. Key community supporter, Mr. Barj Dhahan from Vancouver, visited several universities and is advancing new connections in the Punjab. Dr. Jerry Tomberlin, Dean of the Sprott School of Business, visited India and Dr. Roseann O’Reilly Runte also made three visits. Agreements were signed with the IIT, Mumbai as well as the Petroleum University and Jindal Global University. Visits from the President of Petroleum University to Carleton and the President of BITS, Pilani were most productive.

The University has participated in India’s national day celebrations and has collaborated via Dr. Humar with the Gandhi committee. Dr. Runte was present at these events and also spoke at the India Canada Friendship Circle. Carleton students participated in the dance performance and in a province-wide competition.

The Year of India in Canada 2011 offered extraordinary opportunities for sharing of cultural knowledge and building bridges of understanding between our two nations. Among the activities were the visit of three writers from India, the pre-performance show of sarod with Maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan at Carleton, and participation in the Tulip Festival.

Seeking Support
The Centre submitted proposals to the governments of Canada and Ontario for funding for the Centre. Members of the Advisory Board, Mr. Sudhir Handa of Toronto, Mr. Barj Dhahan of Vancouver and Dr. Pradeep Merchant of Ottawa, are working closely with the university to advance our strong community-academic partnership.

Dr. Merchant visited Ministers Baird, Flaherty, and Strahl with Dr. Runte. Mr. Handa spoke with Minister Milloy. Mr. Dhahan spoke with members of the British Columbia government including Carleton graduate and Minister of Health, Mike de Jong. We also spoke with Ministers Pupatello, Chiarelli, Takhar, Meilleur and MPP Naqvi. Dr. Runte spoke with Minister Day and met with the Chief of Staff to Minister Kenney. She also met with the Premier’s director of policy and his special assistant for educational policy, and spoke with Minister Duncan’s director of policy.

The inclusion of a $12 million Centre of Excellence in the federal budget and a line indicating possible funding for India-related activities in the budget of the Province of Ontario are most welcome news.

In a letter earlier this year, the Premier wrote to Dr. Runte:

“By establishing an India Chair for the university’s Canada-India Centre for Excellence in Science, Technology, Trade and Policy, Carleton is doing much to promote and develop understanding and cooperation between Ontario and India, while at the same time further enhancing the university’s academic reputation.”

There will be a competition for the federal funds and this Centre will most certainly apply with a national consortium of well-chosen partners.

We are well-positioned, as the Centre is already serving as a catalyst to strengthen connections between innovative and entrepreneurial individuals and companies in India and Canada. Experts in both countries are addressing significant issues relevant to our communities, as well as capitalizing on one another’s strengths and resources to our mutual benefit. We will continue to build joint programs, summits and exchanges (physical and virtual). We are anticipating another year of continued investment and growth in the Centre and look forward to expanding our research, scholarship and community building with our many partners.

Upcoming events at Carleton University
May 21-22: Celebration of the 150th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore

June 17-18: Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, Engaging India: A Multidisciplinary Conference
http://www.sici.org/events/details/engaging-india-a-multidisciplinary-conference/

June 17-18: Canada-India Education Summit in collaboration with External Affairs, the High Commission of India, Shastri, the AUCC and Carleton University

June 20-22: Canada-India Innovation Summit in collaboration with External Affairs, the High Commission of India, ISTP Canada, Carleton University. More information at: http://www.carleton.ca/canadaindiainnovationsummit/

August 15 (TBC): Celebration of the Canada-India Centre

October 2: Unveiling the Gandhi statue

November: Follow-up on Innovation Summit in India

For more information, please contact: presidents_office@carleton.ca.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *