With the objective to facilitate research advisory and policy support in the field of “telecom policy, governance and regulation and with a view to contribute to the achievement of the Digital India mission, Vodafone Idea Limited (Vi) has partnered with the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) for a Telecom Centre of Excellence (CoE) and have named the Centre – InViCT (ICRIER and Vodafone Idea Centre for Telecom).
A MoU to this effect was signed in the national capital recently between Dr. Deepak Mishra, Director & CEO, ICRIER and Mr. P. Balaji, Chief Regulatory & Corporate Affairs Officer, Vodafone Idea Limited.
The CoE will bring together stakeholders from the government, academia and industry on a common platform to facilitate the development of a coordinated policy response to emerging technology and business trends for India’s telecom sector.
One of the largest telecom markets globally, Indian telecom sector has become the backbone of Digital India journey. As India takes a leap into the 5G era, there is need to enhance the talent pool, create an environment of technology innovation, secure and manage the national information infrastructure and ensure economic upliftment through increased connectivity.
InViCT envisages to bridge this gap by identifying and capturing the best practices, knowledge creation and sharing, and addressing the needs of regulation, policy and governance impacting the Indian telecom sector.
According to P. Balaji, Chief Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Officer, Vodafone Idea Limited, said, “The Telecom industry has been at the forefront of driving the digital revolution in India. Even as India’s data driven society is being built on high speed networks and ubiquitous connectivity, the advent of 5G will further unlock new opportunities fuelling innovation in the country. Digital connectivity should therefore be placed at the highest order of priority for policy planning. Through the formation of InViCT, in partnership with ICRIER, we will foster research and facilitate dialogue amongst all stakeholders on telecom policy, governance and regulation, with a view to establish sustainable growth of the sector contributing to the achievement of the Govt’s Digital India mission.”
Dr. Deepak Mishra, Director& CEO – ICRIER stated that “The ICRIER and Vodafone Idea Centre for Telecom (InViCT) marks ICRIER’s long term commitment to strengthen the analytical underpinnings of telecom policy research in India. The Centre is an infusion of the strong research capacity of ICRIER and the extensive public policy outreach of Vodafone Idea. We therefore expect the Centre to emerge as a credible source of knowledge, policy ideas and technical support in the telecom space.”
InViCT will function as an autonomous research Centre bringing together stakeholders from private sector, academia, and government, building on their joint dynamism and strengths with the best of the talent in the country. Its core research will focus on the broader areas of policies, regulation and practice related to telecom and associated sectors including ICT. It will also provide a forum for sharing insights with the industry, government, regulators and other academic institutes through regular workshops and round table meetings.
In future, InViCT may also tie-up with Government recognized incubators to promote research. The Centre, based in New Delhi, shall be governed and managed by the Board under the co-chairmanship of the leadership nominees from ICRIER and VIL. The Board includes senior representatives from DoT, TRAI and COAI.