India and Israel on Thursday entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for launching a programme that would promote collaborative research across a wide range of disciplines from medical and information technology to social sciences, humanities and arts.

The programme, which will run for five years, will provide support up to $1,00,000 a research project for three years.

Chairman of the Israel Science Foundation Benjamin Geiger led a five-member delegation at a two-day seminar here to discuss the areas to be covered under the programme. He told The Hindu that approximately 50 collaborations are expected to be supported under the programme.

The MoU was signed by Professor Geiger and Chairman of University Grants Commission Ved Prakash.

After the signing ceremony, Israeli Ambassador Alon Ushpiz noted that both nations hosted some of the best academic institutions. “The linking of our researchers together comes only naturally,” he said.

The programme was initiated during a recent visit of Minister for Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal to Israel, when he met with Israel’s Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz, Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar and Chairman of Planning and Budgeting Committee Manuel Trajtenberg.

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