"I am sure that without such a scheme it would have been impossible to conduct my research, especially in terms of looking into issues from both the social sciences and engineering disciplines."
Swadesh Kumar Samanta, UKIERI PhD Scholar
Essex in the UK. I was associated with the Indian telecom industry for more than 13 years and the UKIERI scholarship gave me the opportunity to understand the social, cultural, technical and economical issues affecting the growth of information and communication technology services in countries across the world. My research is generic in nature but the emphasis is on the growth in telecommunications service penetration (i.e. subscription as a percentage of population) and its use in India as compared to Brazil and China.
The scholarship with potential industrial attachment gave me the opportunity to work with the best researchers at British Telecom in the UK. My association with the BT helped me to become familiar with research challenges for the next generation networks and services. Additionally, the study and travel grant allowed me to travel to different countries (e.g. Austria, Canada and the USA) and present my research ideas to researchers from academic institutes and business organisations.
In my opinion, UKIERI is unique in being open to offering these scholarships to people with industrial background. I am sure that without such a scheme it would have been impossible to conduct my research, especially in terms of looking into issues from both the social sciences and engineering disciplines. Due to my vast industrial experience I was invited to talk at a number of business conferences where I got the opportunity to emphasise on the innovative ideas of this scheme. This scholarship made me interested in a number of areas such as: modelling the demand for next generation services (e.g. eHealthcare and eCommerce); designing the platform for service delivery; business modelling; and service charging. My research has been published in 12 international journals and six conferences related to technical, commercial and economic disciplines.
Currently I am engaged in an EU project where I am evaluating business models and strategies for next generation networks such as fi bre to home. Additionally, my supervisors and I are currently collaborating with Indian universities (e.g. Bengal Engineering and Science University and IIT Kharagpur) for research on information and service delivery in next generation network environment. We have made proposals for funding further collaborative research with India and the UK and the European Union.