Harvard University has established a research alliance with Tata Group under which the Indian conglomerate will fund work in Harvard labs and the university will provide executive education to Tata’s employees.
Harvard said the six-year, $8.4 million agreement, announced Monday by its office of technology development, is the first to combine the research capabilities of the university’s engineering and business schools with its leadership development programs.
“This initiative will harness the power of research that crosses traditional academic boundaries, leading to more rapid discovery and the development of new products and services that address real-world problems,” Provost Alan M. Garber said in a statement.
The alliance will create the Tata Fellowship Program at Harvard Business School. For every research project funded under the alliance, a Tata employee will have the opportunity to spend up to a year in residency in the school’s executive education program. The fellows will work with Harvard research teams on commercialization plans for technologies that may result from funded projects.
The initial focus of the alliance will be on robotics, wearable technologies, and the “Internet of things” with the aim of stimulating a global exchange of ideas.
A joint steering committee will approve funding for proposed projects and oversee the direction of the research alliance.
The Tata companies involved include Tata Sons, Tata Communications, Tata Steel, and Jaguar Land Rover.