Proposals submitted for UGC sanction
Nine departments submit proposal to the UGCResearch and extension activities to get a boost
Thiruvananthapuram: Setting a record of sorts, seven teaching departments of the University of Kerala have submitted proposals to the University Grants Commission for funds under the Special Assistance Programme.
If all these proposals get the nod, the university's chances of being declared a `university with potential for excellence' will go up considerably. Two other departments - Sanskrit and Bioinformatics - have submitted proposals for funds under the `innovative programmes' scheme.
Kerala Studies, Migration Studies and Agricultural Studies are the thrust areas identified by the Department of Economics for SAP funds. Department head B. A. Prakash said he has asked funds for capacity building for research and extension activities in these areas. If sanctioned, the studies on migration will be done in collaboration with the Centre for Development Studies.
The Department Politics has asked the UGC for assistance in three areas - to study labour problems in the IT sector in Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh; a study of ethnicity-related issues in South Asia and analysis of public policy. According to G. Gopakumar, department head, the plan is to study ethnicity in South Asia by focusing on the Awami League Party in Bangladesh, the Nepali Congress in Nepal, the CPI(M) in India and the Sri Lankan Freedom Party in that country.
The Department of Geology in its proposal has sought funds for setting up a `structural geology laboratory.' This laboratory is expected to facilitate studies in such areas as sedimentology, hydrogeology, environmental geology and economic geology. According to department head V. Prasanna Kumar, the department has also proposed a research programme in the `Kinematics of South India Shear Zones' as part of the SAP package.
In a presentation for SAP funds made on Tuesday to a UGC committee in New Delhi by Oommen V. Oommen, head of the Department of Zoology, the focus was on capacity building in the areas of molecular taxonomy and biodiversity and on molecular endocrinology and physiology. The department, Dr. Oommen said, has asked for funds to also set up Integrated M.Sc. courses in these areas. The Departments of Mathematics and Computer Science have also submitted a proposal for SAP funds to the UGC.
Under the scheme for funding innovative programmes, the Department of Sanskrit has submitted a proposal for instituting a postgraduate programme in theatrical arts.
This is a scaled-down version of the project for setting up an international institute in the name of classical dramatist Bhasa that was submitted to the UGC earlier. According to T. Devarajan, department head, the proposed programme is envisaged as a job-oriented, multidisciplinary course that will be run on a self-funding mode. Under the same programme, the Department of Bioinformatics has asked UGC assistance for instituting an M.Sc. in Computational Biology.