Touted as the country's first university, dedicated exclusively to Urban Studies, the Indian Institute of Human Settlements (IIHS) is setting up its 58-acre campus in south-west Bangalore.
Funded by “multiple private sources,” the institute will have an initial capital investment of approximately Rs.250 crore which will be scaled up to Rs.400 crore over the next five years. Currently offering week-long courses, the IIHS hopes to be formalised under the proposed Innovation Universities Bill.
Aromar Revi, development consultant and a key member of the IIHS, told reporters on Monday that it had started recruiting faculty for its Masters in Urban Practice (MUP) programme. It is slated to commence in July 2012.
Leading entrepreneurs and professionals, including Nandan Nilekani, Shirish Patel, Rakesh Mohan, Deepak Parekh, Vijay Kelkar and Jamshyd Godrej, Xerxes Desai and Renana Jebvala, will be working with the institute.
“The 100-member faculty of internationally renowned professionals will be domestically and internationally recruited over the next few years,” Mr. Revi said. Mr. Patel said the goal was to build professional expertise for implementing, executing and maintaining or governing urban projects.
So far, the IIHS has conducted a seven-day course on ‘Re-imagining the world-class city.' From Tuesday, this programme will be offered to post graduates and working professionals. The institute proposes to offer a four-year bachelors and two-year masters degree in Urban Practice, doctoral and applied research programmes.
Mr. Revi also announced that as part of the IIHS' engagement with the city of Bangalore, it has signed an MoU with the Bangalore Development Authority. “It is more of a knowledge partnership intended to help strengthen their internal resources, for instance, help them deal with their geo-spatial data.”
He added that the group intended to build an institute on the lines of the Benaras Hindu University, Shanthi Niketan or the Indian Institute of Science. “We are trying to build an institute of national character, and hope this will reach a world class standard over the next decade.”