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The Fourth IIT traces the historical evolution of the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IITK), established fourth in the chronological ladder of IITs after the institutes at Kharagpur, Bombay and Madras. The early beginnings of IITK are explored, with the appointment of Dr P.K. Kelkar as its founder-director, its humble commencement in the temporary premises of Harcourt Butler Technological Institute (HBTI) and the initiation of a traditional BTech programme. We see how rapid transformations enabled the institute to introduce and nurture a new academic culture in the country, illustrated by the paradigm shift in higher technical education and the freshness of a new spirit in higher education in general—the spirit of IITK. An inventive approach to faculty appointments, student admissions and the development of a novel academic structure are some of the deeply appreciated attributes that IITK has epitomized—and striven for. The book also captures IITK in the present times, in its pursuit of continually improving the material life of its students, staff members and the faculty, and the veritably important role played by the alumni, and also sheds light on the ‘new vision’ of the institute. Expertly and lovingly written by IITK insiders and long-timers, The Fourth IIT is ideal for past and present students and educators, and for anyone interested in an in-depth analysis of one of the most beloved and respected academic institutions in the country.

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