On UK-India Education Partnerships
The question is, however, can these partnerships work. My advise to most institutions I deal with these days is to have a broader approach to partnerships, and look at the whole South Asia rather than just India. India is the big prize, but its strategic and long term: quicker wins, which many UK institutions now need to keep their enthusiasm in these austere times, are easier to have in the other countries, such as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and for the brave, in Pakistan. Interrogating the Indian partners on their motive of partnership is a good start: If they can't go beyond talking about a large number of students on the table - it is always the same story in India but these students are savvier than expected - it is safe to assume that the partnership will not work. Neither of the parties should go into a partnership just because there are a chunk of students to recruit: That's not what good education partnerships are all about. If the conversation is about how the two institutions can create better education, then, and I shall contend, only then, the relationship may actually work. And, this is indeed why who actually fronts the partnership becomes important: The business people on both sides talking the language of opportunity have messed up so frequently that perhaps some educational perspective better serves both sides now.