A Northern Ireland academic is to spearhead a multimillion-pound research project to boost India's internet capabilities, it has been confirmed.
Professor Gerard Parr, who is chair in telecommunications engineering on the University of Ulster's Coleraine campus, is the UK's principal investigator for a £10 million India-UK ICT research consortium.
UK Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts announced the funding during a meeting with Indian Science and Technology Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh in London.
The project will support the second phase of research into next generation telecommunications networks - the development of state-of-the-art platforms and applications that will carry voice, video and data in the future on the internet.
Professor Parr said: "This is a very significant initiative representing over £20 million of investment from government, industry and academic partners in both countries for both phases. We intend to work closely with our funders and industry to ensure we fully exploit the promise of technological advances in Next Generation Networks."
Professor Parr and Professor Ashok Jhunjhunwala from the Indian Institute of Technology are the UK and Indian principal investigators for the research initiative, the ultimate aim of which is to develop solutions that will benefit the lives of millions of users in the future Digital Economy.
The University of Ulster is the lead UK institution in a consortium of nine research-leading UK universities including the University of Surrey, Lancaster University, Queen Mary, University of London, Southampton University, University of St Andrews, University College London, University of Bristol, and the University of Cambridge.
They are joined by seven top Institutes of Technology (IITs) in India: IIT Madras, IIT Delhi, IIT Mumbai, IIT Mandi, IIT Kanpur, IIT Hyderabad, and IISc Bangalore.