In late December, I had the chance to visit with one of the newest Indian Insti­tutes of Tech­nology – in Gand­hi­nagar, in the state of Gujarat, India.   This latest addi­tion to the IIT fran­chise was launched four years ago, along with sev­eral other IIT cam­puses, by the Gov­ern­ment of India as part of its ambi­tious goal to create 1000 uni­ver­si­ties in India in the next few decades.  I was there to look at col­lab­o­ra­tions between North­eastern Uni­ver­sity, in Boston, and IIT Gand­hi­nagar.   What struck me was the unique oppor­tu­nity to see a global uni­ver­sity as startup.  There was no billion-​​dollar endow­ment, no res­i­dent fac­ulty and no leafy campus.  But this aca­d­emic startup was keenly aware of the nature of the global economy, how it must pre­pare its grad­u­ates, and how it must orga­nize itself to be rel­e­vant in this global inno­va­tion economy.  Even though nobody on campus said this to me, it was clear that their strategy could itself be a dis­rup­tive inno­va­tion in the higher edu­ca­tionmodel.


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