Higher technical education, which has emerged as one of the most significant components of global strategy, has become the subject of an impassioned debate both within and without the international academia. The future of a nation's economic health appears soundly tied to its ability to invigorate and sustain its technical education system. The path the academia needs to tread today seems replete with unaccustomed challenges. So, what are the future lineaments of the higher academia? This is the subject that the present issue of our R&D magazine focuses on. As it is true with things in flux, there are more questions than answers in this arena of deliberations. But we hope that, even if in a nascent way, our readers would be sensitized to the prime concerns.

         This issue of UPDATE also affords another glimpse of the diversity of our research programs and achievements spanning the material and biological sciences, and engineering. Of special interest are articles on topical themes such as E-governance, and National Information Access Policy. By way recounting IIT Bombay's ongoing research engagement with it, we also re-visit one of the most damaging natural calamities in recent human history, the Tsunami that left the world shocked last December.

Sandip Roy, Editor