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Aust Gov Unveils US$37M for Asian Studies
Source: futuregov.asia
Source Date: Friday, November 02, 2012
Country: Australia
Created: Nov 06, 2012

The Australian government has signed off on a US$37 million (AUD$37 million) “AsiaBound” scholarship programme – enabling post-graduate students to do short stints in Asia, and improve their knowledge of the region.

This scholarship programme, announced by Federal Minister for Education, Senator Chris Evans, opens up opportunities for more than 10,000 students undertaking a university degree or vocational qualification.

The “AsiaBound” initiative will help students more readily travel to Asia to study – while benefiting from the experience of living and studying in the region.

This scheme offers grants of between US$2,000 (AUD$2,000) and US$5,000 (AUD$5,000) to students to undertake short or semester-length study programmes. It also supports language study, where needed.

“We have to change the focus of our students from Europe and the United States to Asia,” Senator Evans says. “We have to give them that sort of experience. It is part of the cultural shift that has to occur in Australia.”

In other developments, the University of Southern Queensland and China’s most prestigious universities have signed strategic research partnerships. These partnerships formalise collaboration in key areas of research, including climate and agricultural innovation.

Other high-tech projects include collaboration between Queensland’s Griffith University and the Guangdong Institute of Eco-Environment and Soil Science.

The Swinburne University of Technology (Victoria) is teaming Tsinghua University. Another research project is under-way between the Australian National University (ACT) and Jiangnan University.

Earlier, Australian PM Julia Gillard finalised an Australia-China Science and Research Fund. This fund supports joint research activities between Australia and China.

Funding on the Australian side is valued at US$9 million (AUD$9 million) over three years, to be matched by the Chinese Government.

Additionally, the Gillard government’s US$64 million (AUD$64 million) Australia-India Strategic Research Fund supports more than 90 projects with 50 Indian institutions and 28 Australian universities and research organisations.
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