The six universities and 150 colleges in the state will be netlinked soon. This will make it easier for the educational institutions to exchange the information and make each other aware of the activities. The Cochin University of Science & Technology (Cusat) will be the nodal agency and will coordinate the networking of information. A proposal has been sent by the state government to the Ministry of Human Resource Development for clearance. The Officials said that the project would be started soon. Meanwhile, the Cusat is all set to launch a knowledge repository which will link all the state and central institutions situated in Kochi. 'We are negotiating with the scientific institutions in Kochi and we will provide a platform for the common public as well as industries who are on the lookout for information,' said Registrar, N Chandramohankumar. He said that the Cusat would showcase information which would benefit the local self-governments, industries and members from the common public looking for information of any technology, expertise or any ongoing work. The Cochin University has been ranked nine in the list of the 175 universities and institutions using e-journals through the UGCInformation and Library Network (INFLIBNET).
'We rate them according to the usage of the e-journals used by the staff and students of the institutions,' said Jagdish Arora, director, UGC-INFLIBNET. The Cusat was ranked 13th last year and 41, the year prior to the lastyear. If one has to look at the numbers of new works presented, you will find that it is directly linked to the information search done by the individuals by way of references. The knowledge networking programmes got a boost when the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs cleared the proposal for National Mission on Education through the Information and Communication Technology (ICT), submitted by the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, a few months back. According to the Mission, high quality personalised and interactive knowledge modules over the Internet/ intranet will be made available for all the learners in higher education institutions in anytime anywhere mode. This is expected to help in improving the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in Higher Education by five percentage points during the eleventh five year plan period and in ensuring access and equity in higher education.