Monday, December 18, 2023


(December 19-20, 2023)

The Association of Indian Universities (AIU) was established in 1925 and is India's leading organization for higher education. It was led in the past by distinguished individuals like Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Dr. Syama Prasad Mukherjee, Dr. Zakir Hussain, Dr. K L Shrimali, and Shri A.L Mudaliar. The AIU is now organizing its ‘West Zone Vice Chancellors’ Meet’ on December 19-20, 2023. The theme of the Meet is ‘Future of Work and Skill Development. It is being hosted by Somaiya Vidyavihar University, Mumbai, Maharashtra.

Sh. Ramesh Bais, Hon’ble Governor of Maharashtra will be the Chief Guest at the Inaugural Function of the Meet which will be held at 10.00 AM on 19th December, 2023. Prof G D Sharma, President AIU and Vice Chancellor, USTM, Meghalaya will preside over the Meet. Dr Samir Somaiya, Chancellor, Somaiya Vidyavihar University, Mumbai, Maharashtra will grace the dais and address the gathering.  

The Chief Guest of the Valedictory Session is former Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations, Sh T P Sreenivasan IFS (Retired).

Dr. (Mrs.) Pankaj Mittal, Secretary General, AIU will convene the Meet. Prof. V.N. Rajasekharan Pillai, Vice Chancellor, Somaiya Vidyavihar University, Mumbai, Maharashtra will welcome the gathering. The Special Issue of the University News edited by Dr. S Rama Devi Pani will be released by the Chief Guest in the Inaugural Session of the Meet.

Vice Chancellors of Indian Universities, Officers from Ministries in the Government of India, Officers from Apex Bodies like AICTE, NAAC, ICAR, etc., and many academia will be speakers and Session Chairs in the Meet. About 130 Vice Chancellors of the West Zone i.e.  Rajasthan, Goa, Gujarat, and Maharashtra are attending the Meet physically. About 100 Vice Chancellors of the West Zone will attend the Meet virtually. Dr.SNV Sivakumar, Professor of Economics at Somaiya Vidyavihar University, Mumbai, Maharashtra is the Nodal Officer from the host University. Dr. S Rama Devi Pani, Editor, of University News AIU is the Academic Nodal Officer of the Meet. Dr Alok Mishra, JS, Meetings, and Mr. Vijendra Kumar are the Nodal Officers of the Meet to take care of logistics.

Present Meet

The Government of India has demarcated the period between 2022 to 2047 as Amrit Kaal. This Amrit Kaal aims to build upon a new India on the blueprint prepared for India@100. AIU has chosen the theme ‘Higher Education@2047’ for the Vice Chancellors’ Meets in the session 2023--24. Under this overarching theme, the five subthemes are fixed for the five Zonal Vice Chancellors’ Meets. 

The theme for the present AIU West Zone Vice Chancellors’ Meet is ‘Future of Work & Skill Development’.

The future of mankind will be marked by enormous changes in economic, social, political, environmental, and technological spheres. One of the major leading technologies among others that will have a high impact may be Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Generative (AI). Together, these trends are likely to affect the quantity and quality of available jobs, as well as how and by whom they will be carried out in the future. Combined with a general increase in the demand for higher-level skills, these trends may lead to a further increase in inequality and other side effects. Moreover, the new forms of work raise serious concerns about the nature, quality, and ethics of jobs that will arise. However, there are also significant challenges associated with increased Liberalisation, Privatisation, Globalization, and Market demands. Each of these will require an appropriate response in the field of higher education to cope with the consequences of changes. Given the real possibilities of revolutionary changes in all walks of life, policymakers and Educationists in India are facing challenges to make educational reform a success to cope with the challenges of the future. Keeping this in view, the above topic was chosen for the Meet. The main topics to be discussed in the Technical Sessions of the Meet are: 
Sustainable Careers: Navigating a Dynamic Work Landscape
Human Centered Skills in a Tech-driven World: Soft Skills & Emotional Intelligence
Implementation of NEP: Future of Work and Education

The Meet is expected to deliberate on the issues keeping in view the global trends, national preparedness, and regional requirements in consonance with institutional readiness. This Meet has stupendous significance as a good number of Vice Chancellors from the West Zone are expected to participate in the deliberations. From the galaxy of Academic Leaders, we are expecting meaningful dialogues and deliberations in the Meet. Some tangible resolutions containing the measures to be adopted by the Government, Chancellors, Vice Chancellors, and other university functionaries will be drawn from the deliberations. These solutions will be discussed in the Annual Meet and final recommendations will be sent to respective bodies like Ministries, UGC, AICTE, etc., for taking necessary actions. Based on the recommendations of the Annual Meet, a ‘University Action Plan on Future of Work & Skill Development’ will be prepared which will be a handy guide for Higher Education Institutions of the Country. A Policy Document will also be prepared and presented to the Government of India.

About AIU

The Association of Indian Universities (AIU), is one of the premier apex higher education institutions of the Country established in 1925. It is a research-based policy advice institution to the Government of India in the field of Higher Education, Sports, and Culture. Since its inception, it has been playing a vital role in shaping Indian higher education. Most importantly, AIU is vested with the power of according equivalence to Degrees/Qualifications offered by the universities across the world with those offered in India. AIU has also been mandated by the Department of School Education, Ministry of Education, Government of India to accord equivalence to the Indian Boards for the Secondary/Senior Secondary Examination vide Gazette Notification. AIU is a think tank body with the responsibility of undertaking academic activities such as: conducting Research Studies in higher education; acting as the bureau of information on higher education; and liaising with international bodies and universities for the internationalization of Indian higher education among many others. AIU conducts inter-university sports and cultural events at national and international levels. As a National Sports Promotion Organization (NSPO) it promotes sports among universities and maintains the standards in sports.

Being an apex advisory institution, it constitutes an integral part of all major decision-making committees and commissions in the country. As a representative body of Indian universities, it facilitates cooperation and coordination among Indian universities and liaises between the universities and the Government (Central as well as the State Governments) and also National and International bodies of higher education in other countries in matters of common interest. Whereas all the Indian universities benefit from its contribution, at present it has a membership of about 985 universities including overseas universities from other countries viz. Bhutan, UAE, Kazakhstan, Mauritius, Malaysia Nepal, as Associate Members.

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