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An MoU between IITH and the UW build a partnership on cyber physical systems, smart cities

September 11, 2017

From left: Dean Michael Bragg, Dr. Uday Desai, Vice-Provost Jeff Reidinger and Professor Sumit Roy.

Although the India Institute of Technology – Hyderabad (IITH) and the University  of Washington (UW) are over 7,700 miles away, research interests draw the two institutions closer together.

In May, IITH and the UW Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (UW ECE) joined forces through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), fostering a partnership on Cyber Physical Systems (CPS) and Smart Cities.As Director of the India Institute of Technology – Hyderabad (IITH), Dr. Uday Desai has a passion for education and research. In particular, his research focuses on Smart Cities, cyber security and Internet of Things (IoT) for smart health care.

Past collaborations and experience in the field drew him to UW ECE as a potential collaborator. Within the last few years, UW ECE has elevated its strong smart cities reseearch through a new collaboration with the Cities of Seattle and Nashville and a new center on smart, connected communities. UW researchers as a collective are partnering more than ever before on making urban spaces less congested and more eco-friendly.

A new UW-housed collective, Urban@UW, works with scholars, policymakers and community stakeholders to develop cross-disciplinary and cross-sector collaborative research. As a hub for innovation and as a space betrothed by urban conditions, Seattle is a hotbed for this research.

However, it’s not just Seattle that is honing in on this research. Cities in India are innovating around technology and data-collection in ways that will be important for learning and developing best practices and implementation, as well.

A partnership between IITH and UW ECE offers immense opportunities to develop this research for future impact – from India to the United States, with thousands of cities in between.

By offering opportunities in smart city research and urban scholarship, this collaboration builds student experience and student commitment to societal issues.  When equipped with the top researchers and educators, the future of cities looks bright.