Internationalization of Higher Education - IOEs can now set up campuses abroad

There is now an enabling policy mechanism for IOEs to expand beyond India and set up Off-campus centre(s) & Offshore centres.


The UGC (Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities) (Amendments) Regulation 2021 notified this past week is significant in the context of the "internationaliation of higher education" mandate that the National Education Policy 2020 has outlined. Along with the above stated Amendments that now would allow the Institutions of Eminence to set up campuses beyond India, there was also a 6-page long proforma for submission of the information by way of Affidavit by lnstitutions of Eminence Deemed-to-be-Universities for establishing/starting Off-Campus Centre(s). 

The Institution of Eminence scheme was launched with the announcement by the then Finance Minister as part of the various policy announcements and vision setting statements of the Budget 2016. The UGC notified in 2017 the regulations and guidelines on IOEs. There are 3 categories of Institutions that can apply to be considered as IOEs. As per the IOE - UGC website, they are: (i) Existing Government educational institutions, (ii) Existing private higher educational institutions to upgrade themselves to Institutions of Eminence, and (iii)Sponsoring organizations for setting up of new Institutions of Eminence.

This recent most step is likely to further deepen the collaboration and people exchange from a foreign policy standpoint. Universities from Abroad are likely to find an enabling policy paradigm to set up campuses in India (most of whom may choose to collaborate jointly with an existing higher educational brand). Our own higher educational institutions accorded IOE status could also develop their footprint overseas in the service of imparting higher educational services like teaching, research and learning & development programs.

It is not entirely new for our institutions to have gone on to serve the international higher education market beyond India. S P Jain School of Global Management that has campuses in Dubai, Singapore and Sydney (besides Mumbai) and IMT Dubai are but a few of them who have explored international potential to expand. 

With this notification, there is now an enabling policy mechanism for IOEs to expand beyond India and set up Off-campus centre(s) & Offshore centres. This may likely have an impact of furthering student and faculty mobility between India campus of the IOE to and from their aborad campus through semester aborad or student and faculty exchange mechanisms.

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