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Indian Institutes of Technology Collaborate to Build Tech-Empowered Justice System

The Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi (IIT-Delhi) and the National Law University Delhi (NLUD) have signed an agreement to establish the ‘NLUD-IITD Collaborative Platform’ for research and academic collaborations in various interdisciplinary areas. The two sides will work closely on various aspects related to law and technology. This includes joint projects on forensic investigations involving human DNA samples and investigation of inherent algorithmic biases and their legal ramifications for India.

According to a news report, under the agreement, the institutes will work on operations research-artificial intelligence (AI), forensic science, cyber laws, and cybercrimes. They will also explore law and development including official statistics, international trade, migration, climate change, sustainable development, and environmental law. They will work on law and justice including ethics, alternative dispute resolution, and criminal law and justice.

The report further noted that the collaboration comes within the ambit of the Multi-Institutional Faculty Interdisciplinary Projects (MFIRP) scheme of the research and development (R&D) Unit of IIT-Delhi. The outcomes from these collaborative initiatives are expected to have a profound impact at the national level, the institute has claimed. Professor V Ramgopal Rao, the Director of IIT-Delhi stated that the signing of this agreement for student exchange and launch of the seed fund for supporting collaborative research between IIT-Delhi and NLU Delhi marks an important milestone in bringing law and technology together for a translational impact.

In October, IIT-Delhi’s School of Artificial Intelligence (ScAI) announced it would launch a master’s in technology in machine intelligence and data science (MINDS). The MTech in MINDS will be a flagship educational programme and will begin in July 2022.

As OpenGov Asia had reported, the course is planned as an industry-sponsored programme. Students will be expected to work on industry-relevant AI problems since they will be co-advised by an IIT-Delhi professor and a researcher from the sponsoring company. All students with an undergraduate degree in science or engineering will be eligible for the MINDS programme. The MINDS curriculum will include graduate-level courses in core AI technologies such as deep learning and data mining, application-oriented courses such as computer vision, natural language processing, and AI for healthcare, and also fundamental courses on the mathematics underlying modern AI technologies.

The founding head of the school noted that the PhD programme has gathered a lot of interest in its first year. The Institute has had a 90% success rate in PhD students joining ScAI last semester, which is exceptional for a young academic unit like ScAI, as students generally prefer more established academic programmes. The results suggest that the school has a strong faculty team in AI, he added. ScAI was established last year to strengthen the education, research, and applications of AI. It encourages multidisciplinary collaborations between AI and domain experts so that fundamental research impacting real applications could be pursued. The school is making rapid strides since its inception in synergising AI activities across the Institute and new faculty recruitments.

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