UK-India partnership call for course development for Indian higher education institutions on Disaster Resilient Infrastucture (DRI) – Apply through Going Global Partnerships Grant

UK Higher Education Institutions are requested to bid for grant funding through the Going Global Partnerships call to support a project to develop and deliver a pilot transdisciplinary course on DRI. The funding received will be used to deliver a range of activities across course creation and design, master trainers’ training, curricula development, government stakeholders’ advocacy and policy discussions.


The UK and India are partners in development, in May 2021 the Prime Ministers of the two countries met during the UK-India Summit and agreed to a wide-ranging plan of action and Roadmap to 2030 to strengthen their partnership.

The Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) is one of the successful outcomes of bilateral cooperation in recent years. It was launched by PM Modi at the UN Climate Ambition Summit in New York in September 2019. UK and India are currently the Co-chairs of the Coalition.

CDRI aims to support countries across the globe through advocacy, research and technical support in financing and developing disaster resilient infrastructure. The Coalition includes countries that are highly vulnerable to the impacts of geological and climate change related disasters. CDRI has recognised that the absence of appropriately trained professionals is a constraint on the abilities of many countries to ensure disaster resilience in the planning, finance, and implementation of infrastructure. There is a clear need for new provision in education and training that can address this gap.

The UK higher education sector is well placed to respond to the need for developing new fields of education because of its world-renowned research and practice, and its knowledge of India. As a first step, a collaboration between the British Council and FCDO with the support of the CDRI will bring together stakeholders in India and the UK to open-up and develop the field of education and research that has direct relevance for climate action and the resilience of infrastructure across the globe. Subsequently, based on the experience of piloting a trans-disciplinary course on disaster and climate resilient infrastructure, the offering may be extended to other CDRI member countries.

About the project:

CDRI has identified the following priority needs: (i) Disaster and Climate Risk Assessments for National Infrastructure Planning; ii) Planning for Disaster and Climate Resilience in key economic sectors — power, surface transport, communications, and water; iii) Disaster and Climate Resilience of Urban Infrastructure Systems. The project is expected to:

  • Use UK best practice to drive systemic change through curriculum development and transdisciplinary course development in up-skilling higher education faculty, researchers, and students in India primarily in the field of DRI.
  • The project will also deliver increased engagement for the UK sector and improved institutional practice for India in the field of DRI through institutional partnerships. Knowledge transfer and sharing best practices in DRI to address local and global challenges.
  • Understand existing courses and learning programmes in DRI in India for Indian graduates and researchers.
  • Improve the quality and efficiency of disseminating knowledge about DRI in higher education and government institutions by establishing DRI as a transdisciplinary theme of study area in Indian educational Institutions.
  • The programme design must respond to the requirement for networks, knowledge-sharing, innovation, and good practice, as well as those for a system in transition with uneven quality through an additional focus on capacity building and systems development.
  • This offers UK and overseas stakeholders’ an opportunity to form networks where knowledge gaps have been identified while creating and delivering TNE courses in India. This project will be funded primarily through Going Global Partnerships funds (dependent upon approval) to identify appropriate partners on both sides to execute the activities of this project. The FCDO will also put in funds into the project.
  • The primary role of the UK university in this collaboration is to develop a transdisciplinary DRI course programme for the purpose of teaching and learning in HEIs in India by March 2022.
  • For this first pilot course, the UK partner has to develop a cohort of 30 Master Faculty trained in teaching the DRI courseware for University students and researchers in India. 70% of the master trainers from India and the rest from CDRI member countries.
  • The process will be consultative and collaborative with atleast two rounds of consultations with India HEIs (apart from those part of the consortium).

An overall UK India DRI Steering Committee consisting of key decision makers from British Council, FCDO, CDRI, UK and Indian HEIs will provide strategic oversight and guide the programme.

About Going Global Partnerships Grant

Exploratory Grants – This will support nascent partnerships that require assistance to create strong plans for TNE (Transnational Education) and teaching collaborations. Awardees will jointly develop courses that meet global standards and allow easy credit comparability. The grant may be given to a consortium of up to four UK and Indian institutional partnerships. We anticipate awarding approximately ten grants between £15,000 to £20,000.

Consortium may have up to four universities where at least one of them is from the UK and India. Consortiums will be given preference over one-to-one partnerships.

Collaboration Grants – This will be awarded to pre-existing partners to expand the scope of work to include joint and collaborative teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The key objective will be the development of a teaching and collaboration model, and a course or module that contributes towards UK and India bachelor’s or master’s qualifications.

In the 2021-22 financial year, we anticipate awarding two to three grants between the value of £30,000 to £100,000 each.
Larger consortium of at least four to eight universities with a strong plan of systemic impact will be given preference


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