IRMI: an initiative to strengthen institutional ecosystems

The initiative will provide a mechanism for enabling research management at institutions in India thereby help them to navigate the high demands for funding, outreach and governance of research

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New Delhi: The Wellcome Trust-DBT India Alliance has announced the launch of IRMI, a new research management programme for India, which aims to strengthen institutional ecosystems.

The India Research Management Initiative or IRMI, will provide a mechanism for enabling research management at institutions in India. Effective research management helps institutions navigate the high demands for funding, outreach and governance of research. It spans activities that support research, such as national and international funding opportunities, science communication, policy and regulatory matters and intellectual property.

India currently lacks a well-developed research management base, which IRMI hopes to address. Good Research Management requires a diverse set of skills and capabilities at the boundaries of research and other disciplines, including business and communications. Individual research managers need training and career progression opportunities to develop the varied attributes of successful research management. IRMI will provide opportunities for research managers in India to receive training and also create a network of practitioners for serving broader career development needs.

A research management consultant working with India Alliance would lead the IRMI effort.

“We believe that efficient research management structures are needed for Indian institutions to become globally competitive. This initiative aims to catalyze that. It also supports our mission of building excellence in Indian science.” said Dr Shahid Jameel, CEO, Wellcome Trust-DBT India Alliance.

“We are delighted to support the India Alliance in developing this pro-active and much needed initiative. It reflects very well that Indian science has grown in volume and quality to such an extent that greater professionalization of research management is now needed to support it. We are pleased that the India Alliance is taking a lead on helping with this development,” mentioned Professor Mike Turner, Head of Infection and Immunobiology at the Wellcome Trust and Trustee at India Alliance

About the IRMI Pilot phase

IRMI would initially be implemented as a pilot, with building capacity in grants administration at a few institutions. This would include mentorship, training, career development and networking opportunities for research managers and advice for the participating institution on its research management infrastructure. IRMI is expected to allow researchers more time to focus on their research instead of grants administration. The outcomes and feedback from the pilot phase would guide the future directions for IRMI.

Institutions wishing to be considered for participation in the IRMI pilot program should contact the Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance on their website. An authorized official (e.g. Director, Dean, Registrar, etc.) should apply on behalf of the Institution. The IRMI pilot phase would provide support with recruitment (if needed), mentoring and training of research managers in alignment with institutional aspirations and international best practice.

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