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EghtesadOnline: Based on a multilateral agreement signed by the ministries of industries and science and the General Staff of Armed Forces, a nationwide scheme has been launched to boost domestic production and sustainable employment.

Known by its Persian abbreviation TOP, the scheme is designed to link industrial SMEs and knowledge-based companies with university graduates, professors and the educated conscripts serving in the military.

According to the scheme's website, all state-owned firms and NGOs certified by the Industries Ministry and active in the industrial, agricultural and related fields can list their requirements, including professional workforce, technology or scientific research, IRNA reported.

University professors and students, along with military conscripts, have the opportunity to forge ties with or find a job at these firms and units, Financial Tribune reported.

Based on the details outlined on the scheme’s website, companies can list their research needs and university graduates holding Master’s can sign a contract with these firms and conduct the research.

The students are given a deadline to present the research article. They also have the opportunity to make in-field investigations at the firm and use its database.

At the end, students will have a comprehensive article and the firm will benefit from the solutions or the requisite data.

Faculty members or university professors can also use this opportunity to design and implement short- or long-term projects jointly with the industrial units to boost production.

In addition, university instructors can hold educational courses and workshops to upgrade the skills and knowledge of the firm's staff.

Hiring conscripts of military service, who have a Bachelor's, Master's or doctoral degrees in any field of study can also be employed by the industrial SMEs.

According to the scheme's organizers, TOP's main objectives are to promote knowledge-based units by involving talented university students and foster collaboration between industrial firms and universities.

Besides enhancing the skills and productivity of conscripts during their 21-month military service, the scheme will help upgrade domestic industries with the latest know-how and create job opportunities.

First proposed in early May, the scheme is currently introduced and implemented in several provinces, including Tehran, Tabriz, Alborz, Fars and most recently Qom.



Agreements in Qom

The head of the regional office of Industries Ministry in the holy city of Qom said 20 agreements have so far been signed between universities and industrial firms under the framework of the scheme.  

Mahmoud Sijani added that based on agreements, field studies and investigations have been initiated in the industrial branches, namely plastic, leather and stone products, IRNA reported.

"Offering scientific solutions for boosting productivity and indigenizing machinery used by the industries are also envisaged in the deals," he added.

“Home to over 30 universities and academic centers, 150 certified tech centers, 70,000 university students and 2,300 operating industrial units, Qom has high potential to realize the goal of linking science and technology with domestic industries,” Sijani said.

Supporting the technological ideas of developers and involving them in conventional industries have topped the government's agenda since President Hassan Rouhani started his first term in office in 2013.

Experts believe that promoting technological products and applying smart solutions in industrial sectors can curb Iran's reliance on oil revenues and imports.


Industry Iran gap Domestic Production Academia Scheme Bridge Industry Academia Gap sustainable employment