Maastricht University Unveils Maastricht Education and Research Centre in Bangalore

Bangalore, December 06, 2010: Maastricht University (UM), one of the finest research universities in The Netherlands inaugurated the Maastricht Education and Research Centre (MERC), in Bangalore today. A subsidiary of Maastricht University, MERC will foster academic collaboration with Indian Institutes and conduct joint researches of social relevance in India. On this occasion, Maastricht University signed MoUs with the National Law School – Bangalore, Indian Statistics Institute – Kolkata and NIMHANS to conduct joint research and also initiate student exchange programs.

• The MoU with National Law School will facilitate research collaboration and PhD supervision foremost but not exclusively in the areas of international economic law, environment and climate change, Food regulatory, CSR and Human Rights Law and EU law.

• The MoU with National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro-Science will primarily facilitate, educational cooperation for curriculum development, innovative methodological approaches, student assessment; academic and cultural exchange and joint research programs

• The MoU with Indian Statistical Institute will also focus on student exchange programs, academic and cultural exchange, along with staff exchange programs.

The inauguration of the centre was presided over by Dr. Jo Ritzen, President, Maastricht University, Dr. VG Kumar, Executive Director Maastricht Education and Research Centre India, and Dr. Frits van Merode, Scientific Director, Maastricht University, India. Also present were Dr. Venkat Rao, Vice Chancellor, NLS; Mr. Bimal Roy, Director – ISI and Dr. Satish Chandra, Director & Vice Chancellor – NIMHANS

Dr. Jo Ritzen, President, Maastricht University said, ”UM strongly believes that great quality education without research lacks innovation and top research without education lacks inspiration. India, having evolved as the preferred destination for R&D due to a variety of well-known reasons, is of course the natural focus for UM to stretch its wings beyond Europe. Setting up a subsidiary at Bangalore (Maastricht Education and Research Centre Pvt. Limited MERC) is the first major step in the direction of partnering with India ever since it has shown interest to develop partnerships in India in 2007.”

Dr. VG Kumar, Executive Director Maastricht Education and Research Centre, said ”We want to foster academic collaboration with the very best in India and build on synergies in knowledge. The uniqueness in UM’s strategy is that the research that will be built in partnership are necessarily on themes which are of social relevance in this geography. We will also focus on topics where the depth of research pursuit at UM has an opportunity to contribute and synergise with that in the Indian partner institute, in addressing extremely important societal problems.”

Maastricht University has pioneered innovation in education through highly interactive small group learning known as ’Problem Based Learning’ (PBL). Pioneering research is pursued in some areas and testimony is that the university has awarded 200 PhDs, participated in close to 3000 publications in top journals and contributed to numerous books in 2009. The University’s ability to derive these remarkable achievements in a short span of 35 years, is an evidence to its passion to innovate and excel.

Maastricht University excels in various research disciplines such as cardiology, neuroscience and European trade law. The university offers Bachelors, Masters and PhD programmes, courses for postgraduates and professionals, as well as tailored programmes in a variety of faculties such as:

• Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Science

• School of Business and Economics

• Faculty of Law

• Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience

• Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

• Faculty of Humanities and Sciences

Maastricht University has also partnered with other renowned Indian academia, education and research institutes such as,

• Institute of Social and Economic Change (Bangalore)

• Aravind Eye Care Systems (Madurai)

• Anna University (Chennai)

• Indian Institute of Management (Bangalore)

• Law University of Delhi (New Delhi)

• Manipal University (Manipal)

• Nalsar University (Hyderabad)

• University of Madras (Chennai)

• St Johns Hospital (Bangalore)

• Peoples Education Society Institute of Technology (PESIT)

• Acropetal Technologies Ltd, (Bangalore)

• Narayana Hrudayala Hospital, (Bangalore)

• Symbiosis Institute (Pune)

About Maastricht Education and Research Centre, Bangalore

Maastricht University has embarked upon an extremely futuristic mission of building further on its international vision and outlook by initiating a unique India-initiative. Establishing a subsidiary at Bangalore in 2009, namely, Maastricht Education and Research Centre Private Limited was the first major step in this direction. The mandate for MERC is to link UM and its various faculties and research with the Indian society. This is being achieved through partnerships with top Indian academia, education/ research institutes & and industries. The research capacity that would be built in India will be on thematic and of local social relevance.

Maastricht University also draws its strength from the UM India Advisory Board the active support and collaboration with a group of high caliber mentors and outstanding professionals from various sectors as well as from a multi disciplinary team within the different faculties and departments of Maastricht University, including Maastricht University President, Dr. Jo Ritzen and Dr. Frits van Merode. Dr V.G. Kumar is the Director of Maastricht Education and Research Centre Private Limited.

About Maastricht University (UM)

Maastricht University (UM), one of the leading international universities in the Netherlands, stands out for its innovative approach to learning and international outlook. With 14,500 students and 3,500 staff, UM offers a wide choice of academic programmes, all of which are designed to bring out the best in its students. UM awarded over 190 PhDs and published close to 3000 high impact scientific papers in 2009, in addition to over 700 specialist publications. The research in many areas is outstanding and some faculties rank among the best in the world. Currently there are over 14500 students and 1773 academic staff, taking the academic staff to faculty ratio of as low as 1 : 8.2 .