The purpose of research in Azim Premji University is to generate knowledge on issues that either has social relevance or impact; or is directly relevant to the work we are engaged in. While the value of research as contributing to scholarly knowledge is recognized, substantial emphasis is placed on research that contributes to knowledge in practice. The University also encourages research on areas that are under-researched. For instance, while we have a great deal of understanding on what does not work in the Public education system, we have very little knowledge on what works. There is very little narrative on islands of hope in the Public system and research is specifically targeted to develop this aspect of our understanding. The University encourages collaborative research among faculty members, between Organizations, and between faculty and members in Field Institutes.
The University has a specific structure, in the form of Research Centre, to facilitate and support
research. Research funds are available to the faculty to undertake research, the proposals undergo a reasonably rigorous peer review whose intention is to strengthen the study and not so much as reject studies. The University has a Data Analysis and Spatial Visualization Centre to help data analysis and manage data bases.
As next steps, grant making will be used to promote research on specific themes and on few broad themes that are relevant to the Foundation. The University also has the statutory body of Research Council to advice the University on research priorities. To facilitate processes, the University has formulated specific guidelines. Some of the critical ones are the Research Quality Framework, Research Ethics Guidelines and Authorship guidelines.
The University encourages research in broadly three areas, namely, (a) Education, (b) Development and (c) Law and Governance. Within the area of education, the focus is largely on Early Childhood Education, Educational Leadership and Management and Teacher Professional Development. Within development, the focus is on connection that domains of development have with education. Studies like relation between home backgrounds and learning, work and education, health and Nutrition and education, livelihood and education are a few areas of interest.
Some of the studies conducted in the University recently include:
- School Choice Study
- Literacy Study
- Early Childhood Education
- Drop-Out Study
- Field Measurement
- Traditional Health
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