Leading research universities in India and U.S. launch dual engineering doctoral degree program

Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, and the New York University Tandon School of Engineering will offer dual degrees for electrical or computer engineering students

Kovačević and Karandikar signing the agreement in New York.

A five-year agreement between two leading engineering schools sets up a joint doctoral degree program for students in computer or electrical engineering. Signing the agreement are NYU Tandon School of Engineering Dean Jelena Kovačević and Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, Director Abhay Karandikar.

NEW YORK, Monday, November 25, 2019 – New York University Tandon School of Engineering and the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, will begin offering dual doctoral degrees in computer and electrical engineering starting this fall.

Leaders of the two institutions signed a five-year agreement that will expand an international collaboration that formally began in 2016, with their partnership for research and education in cybersecurity. The latest agreement will allow students in computer or electrical engineering to enroll at either school, then finish the last two years of their doctoral program at the other, graduating with degrees from both.

Applicants will need to pass qualifying exams at both schools, and advisors at both must approve and supervise their dissertation work, but only one dissertation defense will be required for the students accepted into the program. All course credits will transfer.

For doctoral students from either continent, the collaboration will offer cultural and academic diversity they would normally find only by leaving their home country for about twice the length of time. Students will also encounter complementary academic strengths at the collaborating schools.

IIT Kanpur is one of India’s leading science and engineering schools, and a pioneer of computer science education in India. Its wireless communication program is also widely recognized. NYU Tandon, meanwhile, counts among its centers of excellence NYU WIRELESS, which is among the world’s top five academic research centers for 5G wireless technology.

Both schools also focus on securing electronics — another area of study for computer and electrical engineers. NYU Tandon and the NYU Center for Cybersecurity are acknowledged international leaders in the field, and IIT Kanpur is known for its cybersecurity excellence. It was the first university in Asia to collaborate with NYU on its giant CSAW student cybersecurity games — emphasizing contests that advance research in hardware security.

The agreement also recognizes the increasing globalization of science and engineering. IIT Kanpur is one of the best engineering schools in India, celebrating its diamond jubilee this year. NYU is one of the world’s foremost research universities, with academic sites across the globe, the most U.S. students studying abroad, and more international students than any other U.S. college or university. NYU Tandon, NYU Abu Dhabi, and NYU Shanghai collaborate closely on engineering research and curriculum.

“NYU Tandon’s informal ties to IIT Kanpur have already brought us outstanding doctoral candidates and collaborations with a world-leading institution of engineering and science. We therefore look forward to this new opportunity to join together to vault even more international boundaries in research and education,” said NYU Tandon Dean Jelena Kovačević. As part of her plan to expand research at NYU Tandon, the number of doctoral candidates has grown to more than 350, with plans to reach 500 within five years.

“We at IIT Kanpur are excited to join hands with NYU on a dual degree program for electrical and computer engineering departments,” said Director Abhay Karandikar. “We are sure that this program will be successful, with both institutes benefiting from the collaborative work in addressing important academic and industrial problems, carried out by outstanding faculties and students.  We also hope that we expand this partnership to other areas of science and engineering in years to come.”

Kovačević and Karandikar signed the agreement on November 22, 2019, in New York.

For more information on how to apply through NYU Tandon, visit apply.engineering.nyu.edu/apply. For IIT Kanpur, visit


About the New York University Tandon School of Engineering

The NYU Tandon School of Engineering dates to 1854, the founding date for both the New York University School of Civil Engineering and Architecture and the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute (widely known as Brooklyn Poly). A January 2014 merger created a comprehensive school of education and research in engineering and applied sciences, rooted in a tradition of invention and entrepreneurship and dedicated to furthering technology in service to society. In addition to its main location in Brooklyn, NYU Tandon collaborates with other schools within NYU, one of the country’s foremost private research universities, and is closely connected to engineering programs at NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU Shanghai. It operates Future Labs focused on start-up businesses in Brooklyn and an award-winning online graduate program. For more information, visit engineering.nyu.edu.

About IIT Kanpur

Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, is one of the premier institutions set up by the Government of India. Registered in 1959, the institute was assisted by nine leading institutions of the U.S.A in the setting up of its academic programs and laboratories during the period 1962-72. With its record of path-breaking innovations and cutting- edge research, the institute is known the world over as a learning centre of repute in engineering, science and several inter-disciplinary areas. In addition to formal undergraduate and postgraduate courses, the institute has been active in research and development in areas of value to both industry and government. For more information, visit www.iitk.ac.in.