A three-day Union Grants Commission (UGC) and all-India vice-chancellors' conference will be held at the Bharatiya Vidyapeeth Deemed University, Pune, from Friday. The conference will seek to work on the theme of “governance of higher education”.

This was announced here on Thursday by the Bharatiya Vidyapeeth and the Association of Indian Universities (AIU) at a press conference. The association has 390 members, including 40 private universities.

The conference will have nine sessions revolving around the theme and will be addressed by speakers from across the country. One session will be dedicated to overseas participants, who will share their experiences and experiments on higher education in their countries, the organisers said.

Gudmundur Eiriksson, Ambassador of Iceland to India, is expected to address the session.

“Education today has become market-oriented. This conference will help to add value in the system,” said Beena Shah, Secretary General of the AIU. “A lot of funds from Central schemes do not reach the actual beneficiaries. We will try and solve these issues relating to distribution of funds,” she added. Guidelines for the uniformity in appointment of vice-chancellors will also be discussed.

The question of whether Bharatiya Vidyapeeth, being a private institution, is eligible to receive grants to organise such a conference came up at the press interaction. Ms. Shah clarified that the university had not been given a grant, but only the money that was required to fund the conference would be reimbursed by AIU, which is allowed according to UGC guidelines.