Ahsan Iqbal meets Nergis Mavalvala, seeks cooperation with MIT

Published: March 4, 2016
PHOTO: Online

PHOTO: Online


Planning, Development and Reform Minister Ahsan Iqbal held meetings with leading figures at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to discuss the potential of collaboration, including setting up a state-of-the-art university in Pakistan.

The minister met with MIT Associate Department Head of Physics Nergis Mavalvala. The Karachi-born quantum astrophysicist is a member of the team of scientists that announced the scientific milestone of detecting gravitational waves, which are ripples in space and time hypothesised by physicist Albert Einstein.

Karachi bike repairman inspired Mavalvala

Iqbal, who is currently visiting the US, congratulated her on the success and discussed opportunities for collaboration with MIT in the field of science and technology.

The minister also met Managing Director of the Martin Trust Centre for MIT Entrepreneurship at MIT in Boston, Bill Aulet. The centre is responsible for entrepreneurships across all five schools at MIT starting with education but extending outside the class room with student clubs, conferences, competitions, networking events, awards, hackathons, student trips and most recently accelerators.

Aulet presented his book and the two discussed ideas to promote entrepreneurship in Pakistani universities so that the youth could become job creators instead of job seekers.

The minister met with Boston MIT’s Associate Provost Professor Richard Lester and apprised him of launching a campaign on productivity, quality and innovation in Pakistan, for making it a competitive economy.

Pakistan-born scientist played part in discovery of gravitational waves

Iqbal informed the Pakistani students at Kennedy School, Harvard University about the improvements being made in Pakistan, highlighting the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

“We need to have confidence in ourselves and keep a sustained effort,” he said, offering full assistance to those working on Pakistan related projects.

The meeting was hosted by Dr Asim Khawaja, Professor of Public Policy at Kennedy School who is one of the few Pakistani American academicians in top US universities.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 4th, 2016.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • Sohaila Javed
    Mar 4, 2016 - 12:11PM

    Necessity demands strategic steps should be taken to improve conditions of teaching, learning and research for enhanced access, quality and relevance of tertiary education to achieve excellence with clear systems of transparency and accountability, and necessary checks and balances.

    Urgent need is to target internal higher education reform for propelling performance evaluation, management and improvement in higher education so that it helps bridge the gap between its present performance and global leaders. It demands a no-compromise policy from all the stakeholders if Pakistani universities have to achieve an international reputation as a reliable partner for collaboration.

    Wake up to real issues on ground and help build universities on excellence initiatives.Recommend

  • lolz
    Mar 4, 2016 - 1:30PM

    They should focus most on primary education on an emergency basis if they are really sincere with the dismal state of education in Pakistan. But it doesn’t give them the media attention they require and that’s why they come up with these stunts of higher education! Recommend

    Mar 4, 2016 - 1:50PM

    Its am honor for Pakistan for concern of our Minister, meetings, visit exchange program. We in Pakistan first and most important is literacy. The ability to read, write, communicate of the population. Education comes later. Stereo type education is creating frustration, un-employment from Boards of Technical Education, and Board of Education for Matric, Inter and other diploma programs.
    With the blessings of Youtube now open in Pakistan and accessible at very nominal cost, or possibly free also if patronised by Universal Service Fund if suggested by the honorable Minister for students.
    We must undergo technical education on Utbe, available on big LED screen or smart LED tv., which should be declared free from all import duty, sales tax, or levies. With the multiple screen can be opened on 42″ screen several lessons could be taught in the class room. MIT several lectures, and millions of things can be taught.
    I shall be honored if this wasteful Matric, Inter exams be abandoned and come to practical informal education so that should learn and see where the world is going. As Discovery, National Geographic, and other scientific program be shown to children at school on smart TV., and they should interact by sending emails simultaneously to the program holders. This could be done yesterday and no PC-1 or approval of funds or budgets. Please abolish duty on Smart TV, Sales Tax and give it to schools and be taught on Youtube.Recommend

  • Muneer
    Mar 4, 2016 - 2:46PM

    Great Initiative, keep it up Mr. IqbalRecommend

  • Last Man Alive
    Mar 4, 2016 - 7:48PM

    Better stay out of this country Ma’am or

    these corrupt pygmy egoistic criminal minded

    politicians and bureaucrats will treat you to their

    traditional sordid ways of contempt and never ending proceduresRecommend

  • Shah
    Mar 4, 2016 - 8:35PM

    If Ahsan Iqbal Can Help Set Up MIT Like Institutes in Pakistan,It Will Be Greater Contribution of PML N Than Motorway or Metro Bus.

    India Set Up IITs Along The Same Lines And Are Now Reaping The Rewards.All US And Western Tech Companies Give Them Placements(Google Head Is Now Indian).We Should Go On The Same LinesRecommend

  • sterry
    Mar 5, 2016 - 12:33AM

    @Shah: The poor and working place people will still prefer mass transit schemes that impact their daily lives or the motorways which will give them chances for employment and decent lives but university and educated people will ant more world class universities to put Pakistan on the map. Congratulations to this government which is trying to improve so many different things to please all Pakistanis.Recommend

  • naila
    Mar 5, 2016 - 1:14AM

    mr ahsan iqbal was on a visit to secure admisiion of his son to MIT
    who does he think he is foolingRecommend

  • Ohyah
    Mar 5, 2016 - 3:30AM

    Iqbal: “yes so i am fram da pii em ell en parties, and we wants the roshans pakistan”
    Nergis: “so gravitational waves are..”
    Iqbal: “vee dont want to know bout dat, we building roshans pakistan, with mian and sher hamara, and tv talkshow debates gainst the ptis and others, actually this research was done by khawaja asif and the Butt brothers, before MIT, in the LUMS.”


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