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Real Academia, Industry Linkages
Prof. Dr. Muhammad Suleman Tahir
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Posted in Publishaletter.com By :
Prof. Dr. Muhammad Suleman Tahir
Letter to the Editor Sent to :
Real Academia, Industry Linkages
Dear Editor: "Real Academia, Industry Linkages and Economic Stability" We are living in a transitional era of dwindling energy supplies, resource wars and explicitly developing but implicitly collapsing of industrial age. International community is little willing to live peacefully, modestly and sustainably, despite visible end of oil and natural gas age by middle of this century. Global energy crisis and global warming are approaching us fast rolling over one another ? do not know which one prevails earlier. It is also not clear weather human race after great energy wars will be there to use the remaining left over energy sources or not. In the light of new energy scenario all the civilization flag bearers are saying goodbye to globalization and energy inefficient technologies. People can neither live depending upon fossil fuels, nor without it. Nothing can drive the massive industrial infrastructure without energy. Ending oil and gas age is bringing a total change by collapsing industrial economies. The inherently limited quantity of fossil fuels is going to expire by 2050-2070 and any stupid use of conventional, nuclear, biological, fuel or weather weapons cannot u turn it. Now the world has only choice among plutonium, carbon and the renewable energy sources. According to a recent survey 60% people vote for renewable and only 10% for nuclear energy. International universities and industries are in a state of war on searching new energy resources and redesigning energy efficient machinery. We have neither a visible energy policy nor any focus on relevant science and engineering education. Like many other countries we must develop a national energy policy and prioritize it over many conventional technologies like computer and telecom engineering in most of Pakistani universities. Our education managers are widening similar technologies to increase their income ignoring how to manage energy availability after 40 years. We might have money there would not be energy sellers as none will have it. We need simultaneously applied projects to solve the community problem along with fundamental research. Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan replaced the archaic University Grant Commission (UGC) in 2002 aiming to develop modern education paradigm like developed countries. HEC offered many MS and PhD Scholarship, started Foreign Faculty hiring program, revised curriculum of universities and regularized the Post-graduate programs. Meanwhile in this era, HEC also initiated offices of research innovation and commercialization (ORIC) across the country to facilitate and strengthen University Industry linkages. Very good initiative from HEC and now it responsibility of Universities to function these offices in reality if we want to grow. This dedicated office was developed in many universities across the Pakistan and functioning from past many years. Normally ORIC mangers are managing the data required by HEC instead of facilitation to the researchers. In actual grounds, this Office has great responsibility to link the professionals at universities, industries and communities. We still are producing degree holders instead of skill full graduates to lead the future business at national and international level. Entrepreneurship is by product of industry academia linkage. Industries in Pakistan are facing acute problem of technical support in terms of new technology adoption and quality of product at mass production level. Unfortunately, Industry do not trust on academia and prefer to open market for solution of their problems. Fan Industry in Gujrat is decelerating its exports due to non-compliance of IEC and IEEE standards. The industry failed to qualify for European or American markets. Leather industry is injecting waster harmful chemicals into underground aquifers of fresh water causing a major disturbance to drinking water of Sialkot and surrounding areas. Ceramic industry of Gujrat and Gujranwala is taking their last breaths due to decreased export and use of old fashioned machinery. There are many technical universities and colleges working in rich industrial triangle of Gujrat, Gujranwala and Sialkot. Due to trust deficit of University Industry linkage, to date no significant step has taken to solve the industrial problems from academia. It time for university executives and policy makers to establish an environment of trust and confidence with industry for solution of their problem through paper based assignment to the teachers of university. For Industry, patience and faith are looked-for sustainable development of strong relation. To implement the idea we need to seek willingness of the local industrialists and explain them need for switching over to modern technology. Author has written a proposal of establishment of Fan Testing Laboratory with linkage of local fan industry and Government of Punjab. The proposed lab will test and issue performance based certification under guidelines developed by ENERCON with the Pakistan and provide international Certifications in compliance with IEC and IEEE standards. We are working on HEC funded Coal water slurry project for optimal use of 180 Billion Tonnes of Thar coal without damaging the Mother Nature environment.We also proposed solar electrification of University campus building on solar photovoltaic panels and grant is being awaited from HEC/university. Author has also submitted the proposal to produce energy from MSW and fruit waste having potential to produce bioenergy and mitigate the pollution.It is now time to take practical measures rather spending time brainstorming, policy making, re-thinking, and entrepreneurships like jiggling words because a good research and projects at lab itself lead to entrepreneurship. Scientist and Engineers must lead and present workable projects to solve the regional industrial and community problems.Real industry-academia linkage is possible through faculty having industrial exposure or consultation experience. Economy of country is function of energy demand, research productivity, number of patents andentrepreneurship etc.,Faculty at most universities is not confident to provide the technical consultation,they have high teaching loads for undergraduates. We need more pilot plants at universities (applied nature project)and at training centers for post graduates. Policy makers should provide resources, for effective linkage with outcome based targets and focusing on the regional development of technologies along with HR training.CPEC is great opportunity and 100s industrial sectors can be developed on the basis of raw material available along the route. Only this is the way, we may serve Pakistan and contribute in making a Greater Pakistan under the vision of our beloved Quaid.
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