Dr. T.M.A. Pai, the founder of Manipal, envisioned provision of excellent and affordable education to mitigate ill health, illiteracy, and poverty in India. In line with its founder’s vision, Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) has enormously contributed to the making of India’s premier institutes across diverse streams from medicine and allied health to architecture and design. Moreover, it has actively set up medical schools and hospitals in various parts of the country together with outreach programs and rural health care centres for community wellbeing. In addition to regular medical treatment and preventive health services, MAHE also recognizes the importance of active collaborations at global, national and local levels for provision of state-of-the-art healthcare as well as promotion of groundbreaking research.
As a part of SPARC project, the Government of India sanctioned the project titled “Indigenizing Evidence Synthesis and Systematic Reviews for International Development and Global Challenges”. MCON, MAHE and Public Health Evidence South Asia (PHESA), Prasanna School of Public Health (PSPH), MAHE, received the prestigious Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Researcher Collaboration (SPARC) grant. It aimed at academic and Research Collaboration between teams from MCON MAHE Manipal and the Social Science Research Unit (SSRU), Institute of Education (IOE), University College London (UCL), U.K. [17th February 2020 to 5th March 2020]. SPARC is a Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), Government of India initiative that aims to facilitate academic excellent through research collaboration between the best institutions in India and abroad on subjects of national and international relevance. The two-year project spanning from July 2019 to July 2021 aimed at improving capacity-building in evidence synthesis and incorporating the latest developments in systematic reviews including automation and machine learning for Indian researchers. Through this transnational collaborative learning project in public health, MAHE aims to contribute to the creation of both expert professionals and specialised region-specific community projects.