Norway has a growing demand for Information Technology (IT) professionals. Despite positive career prospects, many young students do not choose a career in IT, due to lacking awareness or prejudice towards the IT profession. Parallel to the increasing need for IT personnel, there is a continuous evolution in the skill-set brought about by innovations in cutting-edge technologies. How to increase the attractiveness of pursuing a career in IT for the young people? And how to promote Norway’s active participation in the global development of knowledge in information technology? These are some of the primary challenges to be tackled.
IPIT (International Partnerships for excellent education and research in Information Technology) aims at developing a highly visible international consortium, composed of world’s leading institutions in the area, in order to share best practices, build and strengthen academic cooperation in information technology. IPIT will build on top of the SFU Centre for Excellent IT Education (Excited) at Computer Science Department of NTNU and reinforce SFU’s mission to put Norway in the forefront of innovative and international IT research and education. Professor Letizia Jaccheri is leader of the IPIT project.
IPIT’s international partners are University of Michigan (USA), Tsinghua University (China) and Nanjing University (China). The partnership will last for three years. Through mutual exchange of students and academic staff, co-supervision of master and PhD students, workshops and meetings, IPIT will contribute to advancing mutual development, enhancing unique and sought-after knowledge, and enriching global understanding of IT research and education fundamental challenges. The collaboration will provide students and academic staff on both sides a wide range of new opportunities for accomplishing innovative research.
IPIT will contribute to:
a) A long-term approach to strengthen internationalization of bachelor, master, PhD students;
b) Intensification of international research in IT, with a specific focus on Software Engineering and IT education research
IPIT will achieve the following objectives:
1) Establish sustainable long term strategic research and education partnerships with the international partners to increase synergy and minimize clerical work
2) Increase quality and popularity of IDI international offers at Master level and increase the number of incoming students
3) Increase the number of outgoing NTNU students with the final goal to reach 40%
4) Stronger connection between research and education – students need to become more aware of research processes by acting as young researchers and to be part of experiments.
Throughout its first year, IPIT project has had many events. A definite highlight for the IPIT this year was the kick-off meeting. From 4 to 6 June, the kick-off meeting took place in Trondheim and Ålesund. A group of students, postdoctoral fellows, professors, and administrative staff from NTNU and the partner universities presented their research and set the agenda for the coming two years of research and collaboration. The professors also took time to interact with master and doctoral students to share their expertise and experience with the next generation of scholars. Through the kick-off meeting, IPIT has established as an initial step a stable consortium of elite universities between Norway, China and US. Further research meetings in US and China with focus on Software Engineering and Computer Science Education will help in strengthening the collaboration among the institutions.