The event focussed on emerging trends in science (particularly biology) in India and the UK, and on collaborative research between the two countries. Sessions shed light on opportunities for young scientists and researchers outside India to collaborate with or work in Indian institutions. The one-day event opened with keynote talks by prominent scientists in India and the UK who provided a flavour of the changing research environments, new initiatives, and agreements between India, UK and other countries that allow for mobility of researchers, funds and projects. Scientists from the UK who work in close collaboration with Indian institutions or scientists talked of results and learnings from their bilateral research projects. A few young scientists from India were also invited to talk about the work environment, their experiences in relocating and pursuing collaborative research.
Representatives from Indian and European funding agencies then explained their schemes for bilateral research projects, start-up grants for young researchers and mobility options between Europe (specifically UK) and India. The session was structured with talks by individual agencies, followed by a group discussion session. Agency representatives were seated at different tables, and participants encouraged to approach them for further discussions. The funding agencies who participated are Department of Biotechnology, the Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance, EMBO, Euraxess Links UK, Eyestem Research Private Limited and Institute of Life Sciences, Ahmedabad University.
Following this, there was a poster session where senior PhD students and postdoctoral scholars presented their research. The last session featured talks by representatives of corporate houses that have research laboratories in India and Europe that are looking to expand or collaborate. Given the growth in the life-science industry in India, we believe representation from this sector is essential. The day ended with a discussion about how to enhance such India-UK initiatives in the coming years and a networking dinner.