New facility for Australian–Indian nanobiotechnology centre
The world’s first dedicated nanobiotechnology research centre recently underwent an expansion, the results of which were revealed yesterday by Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The new facility, a partnership between Deakin University and The Energy and Resources Institute of India (TERI), was unveiled by the two world leaders at the Hyderabad House, New Delhi. The banquet was also attended by Deakin Vice-Chancellor Professor Jane den Hollander AO, Deakin Chancellor John Stanhope and Australian Education Minister Simon Birmingham.
Professor den Hollander said the new facility, within the existing TERI-Deakin Nanobiotechnology Centre (TDNBC), will improve research focused on global concerns including water quality, efficient farming practices, waste management and agriculture-dependent ways to treat human disease.
“With depleting natural resources and an increasing demand for food and medicines, the role of nanobiotechnology has never been more crucial to countries such as Australia and India, which are challenged by environmentally significant factors, such as unreliable rainfall, poor soils and climate change,” Professor den Hollander said.
“These are vital issues for humanity and it is extremely satisfying to think of the hugely positive implications of this research.”
The centre, which first started when Deakin and TERI began their partnership in 2010, is currently home to 16 full-time research scientists, 13 research and technical staff and seven PhD students. Students based at the centre are enrolled as PhD candidates at Deakin and receive joint supervision from the university and TERI under the Deakin India Research Initiative (DIRI). Six to eight months are spent at Deakin with the Australian supervisor.
“As the first Australian university to establish an office in India in 1994, Deakin is proud to continue to strengthen our relationship each year, providing opportunities to students around the world and helping to improve lives both in India and Australia,” Professor den Hollander said.
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