FLAME University, the pioneer of liberal education in India has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Nuffield College, University of Oxford that creates a collaborative Centre for Experimental Social Sciences at FLAME University, the first such research centre in India.
Nuffield College, University of Oxford, England, specialises in the social sciences, particularly economics, politics and sociology. It is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford which is ranked as the best university in the world by Times Higher Education Rankings 2016. Many prominent people have studied at Nuffield College, University of Oxford including, Manmohan Singh, Former Prime Minister of India and Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England.
Sir Andrew Dilnot, the Warden of Nuffield College, University of Oxford, and Raymond Duch, the Director of the Nuffield College, University of Oxford, Centre for Experimental Social Sciences, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with FLAME University in Pune, India that creates a collaborative Centre for Experimental Social Sciences at FLAME. The signatories from FLAME were Devi Singh, Vice-Chancellor of FLAME University, Krutarth Shah, Governing Body Member of FLAME University, Tejas Patani, Board of Management Member of FLAME University; Sharon Barnhardt, Director of CESS Nuffield-FLAME University; and Pavan Mamidi, Director of International Research Collaborations at CESS Nuffield-FLAME University.
Commenting on the collaboration, Dr. Devi Singh, Vice-Chancellor, FLAME University, said, “We are privileged to announce our association with Nuffield College, University of Oxford, UK, one of the most prestigious social sciences institute in the world. This will create a research centre unlike most in the country. It showcases our commitment to enhance the research culture at FLAME University and constantly improve the quality of our education offerings by tying up with the best in the world.”
Dr. Sharon Barnhardt, Director of CESS-Nuffield FLAME University, commented, “The expansion of CESS Nuffield to India made possible by FLAME University, is an investment in social science research, which demonstrates FLAME University’s commitment to supporting an important element of liberal education. Its core will be experimental social sciences – a method-based unifier, rather than being focused on a theme or issue. This will give us a platform to work across economics, sociology, political science and social psychology in addition to their applications in law, management and public policy.”
She further added, “I am most excited by the opportunity this collaboration provides us to bring a Nuffield-style research community to India. Nuffield has a truly special culture admired by social scientists across the world, and we intend to nurture that in India at FLAME University. There will be a lot of visiting researchers working with the Centre, from the UK, US, and other countries. I am from the US and feel right at home at FLAME University. Other foreign faculty will also enjoy spending time on this amazing campus in Pune and the resulting interactions will enrich everyone’s research. It’s the right campus for curious people to design experiments that will help us all learn about human behaviour.”
Dr. Raymond Duch, Director of the Nuffield College, University of Oxford, Centre for Experimental Social Sciences pointed out that “Nuffield College, University of Oxford, is extremely excited about the collaboration with FLAME University in India. FLAME University are acknowledged as pioneers of liberal education in India and their focus on inter-disciplinary education makes them the right fit for us. This collaboration offers Nuffield CESS a unique opportunity for Oxford scholars to cooperate with the vibrant and rapidly growing community of social scientists in India.”
The MoU provides for intensive collaboration between Nuffield College, University of Oxford and FLAME University on the training of young experimental social scientists in India. The Centre for Experimental Social Sciences at Nuffield College, University of Oxford, has developed a superb reputation for providing accessible but cutting edge training in experimental methods for students with very diverse interests including students from academia and the public and private sectors. Professor Duch said “We are very pleased that Nuffield CESS will host, annually, a large contingent of students from FLAME University at our training facilities here in Nuffield College, University of Oxford. These students will get the opportunity to attend research training programs at Nuffield CESS, while staff from our Centre will also conduct training sessions at the new CESS Nuffield-FLAME University facilities on the FLAME campus.”
Dr. Pavan Mamidi, Director of International Research Collaborations, CESS Nuffield-FLAME University, stated, “FLAME is a young university, but the founders have big hearts and a social commitment that is rare to find these days. Above all, is their self-less motivation to build a world class university of excellence in India. The CESS Nuffield-FLAME University centre promises to harness new ideas and cultivate a good research environment in India. FLAME University’s focus on providing quality education by creating new knowledge or enhancing existing knowledge dovetails rather nicely with a venerable Oxford University institution, Nuffield.”
Through this tie-up, FLAME University strives to augment its focus on research, give opportunities to its students to develop research skills through training at Nuffield College, University of Oxford, learn from the best practices of one of the most revered universities globally and attract the best scholars on its campus to create a vibrant academic community.