Doctoral Fellowship

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1. Introduction

1.1 Doctoral Fellowships are awarded to selected scholars, who are registered for Ph.D. in UGC recognized Institutes of national importance, universities/ deemed universities, ICSSR research institutes and colleges having approved Ph.D. programme with requisite infrastructure as defined by MHRD/UGC etc., to pursue and complete their doctoral research in any social science discipline.

1.2  The broad disciplines of study within the domain of social sciences identified by ICSSR are:

  1. Economics
  2. Management
  3. Commerce
  4. Sociology
  5. Social Work
  6. Social Anthropology
  7. Cultural Studies
  8. Socio-Sanskrit Studies
  9. Socio-Philosophical Studies
  10. Social Linguistics
  11. Gender Studies
  12. Health Studies
  13. Political Science
  14. International Studies
  15. Public Administration
  16. Diaspora Studies
  17. National Security and Strategic Studies
  18. Education
  19. Social Psychology
  20. Legal Studies
  21. Social Geography
  22. Environmental Studies
  23. Modern Social History
  24. Media Studies
  25. Library Science

 

2. Categories of Doctoral Fellowship

ICSSR Doctoral Fellowship is provided under the following categories:

A. Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

B. Institutional Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

C. Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship

D. Centrally Administered Contingency Grant

 

3. Eligibility

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

3.1 The candidate must have a confirmed Ph.D. registration (Research Degree Committee (RDC) approved) at any of the institutions mentioned at 1.1 above on the last date of application. It includes the requirements of clearance of Research Entrance Test (RET); The Ph.D. topic must have been confirmed.

3.2 Minimum 45% marks in Graduation and 55% in Post-Graduation or equivalent grades in any social science disciplines. Five per cent (5%) relaxation of marks will be given to the SC/ST candidates; The submission of Marks Sheet, particularly of Graduation and Post-Graduation are mandatory otherwise the candidate shall be considered as Not Eligible.

3.3 NET/SLET and M. Phil from a recognized university will carry weightage in the assessment of research proposal. NET/SLET qualification are not mandatory for eligibility purposes, however, the submission of the NET / SLET Certificate is mandatory to secure weightage in assessment.

3.4 The scholar should not be more than 40 years of age on the last date of application. There shall be an age relaxation of 5 years for SC/ST/Persons with benchmark disability;

3.5 Candidates who have already availed UGC Junior Research Fellowship (JRF)/ Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship (RGNF)/ Maulana Azad National Fellowship (MANF)/ ICSSR/ ICAR/ CSIR/ ICPR/ ICMR/ ICHR or any such doctoral fellowship are not eligible to apply.

B)  Institutional Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

3.6 All conditions of the Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship (3.1 to 3.5) would apply to this category also  and would be administered through the ICSSR Research Institutes.;

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Fellowship

3.7 All conditions of the Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship (3.1 to 3.5) would apply and the candidate should have completed at least two years of research work for Ph.D. degree at any of the institutions mentioned at 1.1 above is eligible to apply for Short-term Fellowship.

D) Centrally Administered Contingency Grant

3.8 This is a one-time grant awarded to a registered Ph. D. scholar at any of the institutions mentioned at 1.1 above, who is at an advanced stage of his/her research work. The candidate meeting all conditions of the Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship (3.1 to 3.5) is eligible to apply for Contingency Grant for the purposes of field trip, stationery and computer consumable related expenses.

 

4. How to Apply

A. Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

4.1 Applications will be invited through open advertisement on ICSSR website and should be received online before the deadline mentioned in the advertisement.

4.2 The candidates shall submit an online application and upload only their Research Proposal in the prescribed Research Proposal Format (given at Clause 12: A to D) in PDF format (within restricted size mentioned in the Application Form) along with their NET/ SLET certificate, in case they have qualified NET/SLET.

N.B. (i) At this stage, the candidates need not submit any other documents other than those referred under 4.2.

(ii) The duly forwarded hard copies of applications along with the copies of certificates and mark-sheets shall asked for only from the short-listed candidates.

4.3 The Research Proposal should be either in English or Hindi (Use Unicode format to fill form in Hindi).

B. Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

4.4 The scholars seeking Institutional Doctoral Fellowship are required to apply directly to the concerned ICSSR Research Institute against their Call for such fellowship. For details, visit the website of the respective institute (link to ICSSR Research Institutes List). After initial shortlisting by institutes, their proposals are evaluated by ICSSR experts.

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship and

D) Centrally Administered Contingency Grant

4.5 The Application procedure shall be same as per the conditions at Clauses 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3

 

5. Procedure for Award

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship (as under 3.6 A above)

5.1 Applications are scrutinized and short-listed by the Screening Committee and expert Committee(s) of ICSSR.

5.2 Expert Committee(s) / Subject Expert Group(s) give their assessment, in terms of grades and scores, on scrutinized/short-listed proposals on objectively defined parameters. The short-listed applicants may also be invited for a presentation before an Expert Committee of ICSSR. Based on the assessment of Expert Committee(s), subject-wise merit lists are prepared for award of fellowship. 

5.3 The recommendations of the Expert Committee(s) are placed before the requisite committee(s) of CSSR for their consent/approval.

5.4 Subject-wise merit list of selected candidates of Centrally-Administered Doctoral Fellowships is placed on the ICSSR website and only the selected candidates and their affiliating universities are informed individually.

B) Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes) (as under 3.6 B above)

5.5 The ICSSR Research Institutes are required to follow the rules of the ICSSR Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship. The institutes are required to send within the specified timeline the applications of their short-listed candidates to ICSSR for evaluation by ICSSR Expert Committee(s).

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship (as under 3.6 C above)

D) Centrally Administered Contingency Grant (as under 3.6 D above)

5.7  The procedure of award of these fellowships shall be same as per the conditions at Clauses 5.1 to 5.5

 

6. Duration and Value

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

6.1 Doctoral Fellowship is a full time research work.

6.2 The duration of the fellowship is strictly for two years or till the date of Ph.D. submission at the university, whichever is earlier.

6.3 The value of the fellowship is Rs.20,000/- p.m. and contingency grant is Rs.20,000 /- p.a.

B) Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

6.4 The duration and value of fellowship will be the same as mentioned under the Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship.

C) Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship

6.5 The duration of the Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship is strictly for six months or till the date of Ph.D. submission at the university, whichever is earlier.

6.6 The value of fellowship is Rs.20,000/- per month plus contingency grant of Rs.10,000 /- for the duration of the Fellowship.

D) Contingency Grant

6.7 This is a consolidated grant for meeting contingency expenses of Ph.D., not exceeding Rs.62,500/-.

 

7. Joining and Release of Fellowship

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

7.1 The scholar has to join the fellowship within two weeks of the date of the award letter by submitting the required documents including an Undertaking for mandatory Ph.D. thesis submission to ICSSR through the affiliating / administering institution. The Joining date may be extended by the ICSSR up to six months in deserving cases only.

7.2 The sanction of the fellowship will be issued initially for a period of one year, effective from the date of joining of the Fellowship. The renewal of the Fellowship for the subsequent year shall be subject to the receipt of satisfactory Annual Progress Report and Statement of Expenditure for the entire fellowship grant released for first year.

7.3 The first year fellowship and contingency grant will be released in two equal instalments. The first instalment will be released after receiving the documents prescribed in the Award letter along with the Grant-in-aid-Bill (GIB) and Registration Mandate Form of PFMS Account of those affiliating /administering institution, which have not linked their accounts to PFMS for ICSSR grant. The second instalment shall be released after receiving a satisfactory Six Monthly Progress Report in the prescribed format along with Statement of Expenditure.

7.4 The second year fellowship grant will be released in three instalments:

7.4.1 The first instalment will be released on receiving a satisfactory Annual Progress Report of the first year and Statement of Expenditure.

7.4.2 The second instalment will be released on receipt of satisfactory First Six Monthly Progress report of the Second Year in the prescribed format along with Statement of Expenditure.

7.4.3 The third and final instalment will be released on receipt of one hard and one soft copy of Ph. D thesis submitted to the university and its summary along with the audited Statement of Account and Utilization Certificate (in GFR-19A Form).

7.5 The Statement of Accounts and Utilization certificate should be signed by the Finance Officer/Registrar/ Principal/Director in case the accounts of the institution are audited by the CAG/AG. Otherwise, they need to be signed both by the competent authority of the affiliating institution along with the chartered accountant.

B) Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

7.6 Same as mentioned under the Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship.

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship and

D) Centrally Administered Contingency Grant

7.7 The Short-Term Fellowship and Contingency Grant are released in two instalments. The first instalment of approximately 70% is released on receipt of the documents prescribed in the Award letter along with the grant-in-aid bill (GIB) and Registration Mandate Form of PFMS Account of concerned affiliating/administering institution. The second and final instalment of 30% shall be released after receiving a copy of Ph.D. thesis and its Summary along with the Statement of Accounts with Utilization Certificate (in GFR-19A Form) for the entire sanctioned amount duly signed by the competent authority of the affiliating institution.

7.8 The Statement of Accounts and Utilization Certificate will be signed by the Finance Officer/Registrar/Director in case the accounts of the Institution are audited by the CAG/AG. Otherwise, they need to be signed by the competent authority of the affiliating institution along with a chartered accountant.

 

8. Monitoring of Fellowship

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

8.1. Regular monitoring of Fellowship is done on the basis of Six Monthly and Annual Progress Report in the prescribed format submitted by the scholar and duly forwarded by the supervisor.

8.2. The fellowship may be discontinued /terminated if research progress is found unsatisfactory or any ICSSR rules are violated or the research topic is substantially changed from the topic submitted in research proposal.

8.3 The ICSSR may ask for annual presentation/mid-term appraisal of the research work.

8.4 During the course of the fellowship, the scholars are required to publish at least two research papers in reputed journals on the theme of the research undertaken and submit a copy of these to ICSSR.

B) Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

8.5. Same as mentioned under the Centrally Administered Doctoral Fellowship.

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship and
D) Centrally-Administered Contingency Grant

8.6. Research undertaken by a fellow may be reviewed and the fellowship may be discontinued if research progress is found unsatisfactory or any ICSSR rules are violated or the research topic is substantially changed from the topic submitted in research proposal.

 

9. Completion of the Fellowship

A) Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship

9.1 If a fellow leaves the fellowship before its full-term, he/she has to inform ICSSR in advance.

9.1.1 The scholar shall be permitted to retain the grant released from date of Joining till the date of leaving /discontinuing the ICSSR fellowship subject to submission of the following:

  1.   An updated Progress Report for the said period duly forwarded by the Supervisor.

(ii)  An Undertaking for submission of Ph.D. thesis within a reasonable time on a Non-Judicial stamp paper of Rs. 100/- (in prescribed format).

(iii)  Statement of Accounts and Utilization Certificate (in GFR 19A) form for the admissible amount.

(iv)  Refund of the unspent balance, if any, the payment may be made by sending a cheque/ DD in favour of ICSSR, New Delhi or though PFMS.

9.1.2 In such cases, the ICSSR may consider to pay contingency grant subsequent to submission of thesis to ICSSR.

9.1.3 In other cases, the scholar can leave the fellowship by refunding the entire amount already released by the ICSSR.

9.1.4  The scholars leaving the fellowship before completion of their fellowship tenure without informing ICSSR shall be required to refund the entire amount of fellowship released with penalty/penal interest.

9.1.5  The scholars who submit their Progress Reports that are delayed by over a year, shall need to give the justification of the delay along with furnishing an Undertaking notifying the date of Ph.D. submission to ICSSR.

9.1.6  ICSSR shall not consider any request for release of grant after one year of submission of thesis and all related audited accounts. It should also not exceed two years after  completion of fellowship period.

9.2 If, as a special case, a scholar remains on leave due to maternity/ medical/ extra ordinary circumstances (not exceeding six months) with due approval by the ICSSR, the tenure of fellowship shall be deferred by that period and the total amount of fellowship sanctioned shall not exceed 24 months.

9.3 On completion of the fellowship tenure, the scholar should submit the following within one year:
(i) A hard and one soft copy of the Ph. D thesis submitted to the university for award of the degree along-with a Summary of the thesis (in 3000 to 4000 words) and the research papers published.
(ii) These documents should be submitted in hard as well as soft copy (at designated email) which includes Ph. D Thesis, Summary and research papers.

(iii) The audited Statement of Account and Utilization Certificate (in GFR-19A Form) for the admissible grant as per clause 7.5.

(c) In case a thesis is revised and re-submitted, a copy of the same should also be submitted to the ICSSR.

 

B) Institutional Doctoral Full-Term Fellowship (administered by the ICSSR Research Institutes)

9.4 Same as mentioned under the Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship including the conditions mentioned in the Clauses 9.1 to 9.3. Further, the concerned research institutes must also submit the scholars’ thesis / relevant documents to ICSSR well in time

C) Centrally Administered Short-Term Doctoral Fellowship and
D) Centrally Administered Contingency Grant

9.5 Same as mentioned under the Centrally Administered Full-Term Doctoral Fellowship including the conditions mentioned in the Clauses 9.1 to 9.3.

 

10. Obligation of the Affiliating Institution

10.1 The affiliating institution is required to provide the requisite research infrastructure to the scholar and maintain proper accounts.

10.2 The affiliating institution is required to give an undertaking in the prescribed format contained in the Application Form to administer and manage the ICSSR fellowship grant.

10.3 The affiliating institution shall open / maintain a dedicated bank account for ICSSR grant (Scheme Code-0877) that is duly registered at PFMS portal for release of the Doctoral Fellowship Grant without any delay.

10.4 The affiliating institution will be under obligation to ensure submission of the Ph. D thesis and an audited Statement of Accounts and Utilization Certificate with respect to admissible grant, (in the prescribed GFR 19-A) duly certified by the Competent authority including the refund of any unspent balance.

10.5  In case a scholar leaves /discontinues his fellowship before completion of fellowship tenure, the affiliating institution shall immediately inform ICSSR, settle the accounts including the refund of any unspent balance.

 

11. Other Conditions

11.1. The ICSSR will follow the ceiling imposed by the UGC on number of doctoral supervisions under a particular category of guide (Professor/Associate Professor/Assistant Professor).

11.2. The Doctoral Fellows must stay and work full time at the affiliating university / institute. However, they may go on field work with the express approval of their supervisor but for rest of the period, they must continue to work at the concerned university / institute and follow their rules.

11.3. The Fellow shall not accept or hold any appointment (paid or otherwise) or receive any emoluments, salary, stipend etc., from any other source during the tenure of the award. However, a fellow may undertake teaching assignments of not more than four hours a week, assist in tutorials, evaluation of the papers, laboratory/demonstration work, etc.

11.4 The tenure of fellowship is strictly for two years. Any extension can be granted under exceptional circumstances without any additional financial implications to ICSSR. The ICSSR reserves the right to determine exceptional circumstances.

11.5 The contingency grant may be utilized for books, stationery, computer consumable costs and field work expenses related to the research work.

11.6 The ICSSR reserves the first right to publish the Ph.D. thesis funded by it, provided the work is recommended for publication by the ICSSR expert(s).

11.7 The scholar shall prominently acknowledge ICSSR’s support in all publications resulting from the research output of the fellowship and should submit a copy of the same to the ICSSR during the fellowship and even after its completion.

11.8 ICSSR follows Government of India rules and directives with regard to SC, ST and Persons with benchmark disability.

11.9 Defaulters of any previous ICSSR fellowship/project/grant will not be eligible for consideration until the applicant obtains the clearance from the concerned administrative division.

11.10. A fellow is not entitled for same type of fellowship more than once.

11.11 While accepting Doctoral fellowships from the ICSSR, a fellow should not accept job or any other fellowship from any other university / institute. However, ICSSR, shall encourage and support the ICSSR fellowship awardees getting prestigious foreign fellowships and therefore they shall be permitted to re-join their fellowships after their return from abroad as special cases provided they had sought prior approvals.

11.12 During the tenure of fellowship, the fellow will be governed by the rules of the affiliating/administering institution in all matters including drawls of TA, attendance, holidays/leave and contingency grant, etc.

11.13 The selected fellows are expected to do full-time research in India. They could, however, undertake data collection outside India in exceptional cases, if warranted by the needs of the proposal. For this, they are required to apply separately for consideration under the Data Collection Scheme of the International Collaboration Division of ICSSR and the decision of the ICSSR in this regard will be final. ICSSR will not be bound to support data collection from abroad and in no way, the completion of study should be consequent upon that.

11.14 ICSSR makes positive efforts to encourage the less-represented sections such as women, persons with disability, people belonging to educationally Backward Areas etc.

11.15 The scholar should not have been subjected to any disciplinary / legal action / proceedings/ financial penalties in his/her research career.

11.15 Books/periodicals/equipment purchased by the scholar out of the contingency grant should be deposited with the affiliating/administering institution and a certificate to this effect be submitted along with the final report.

11.16  Application submitted against a Call will not be considered for the subsequent Calls on its own.

11.17 ICSSR reserves the right to reject any application without assigning any reason. It is also not responsible for any postal delay/loss.

11.18  Incomplete applications in any respect shall not be considered for fellowship.

11.19  The final authority for the interpretation of the guidelines or any such issue is vested with the ICSSR.

11.20 No queries will be entertained by the ICSSR secretariat until the final declaration of results which will be placed on ICSSR website.

 

12. Research Proposal Format

While applying online, the complete research proposal must be submitted online in the following prescribed format constituting of four parts (A to D):

  1. Abstract of the research proposal (in 300 words)
  2. The detailed research proposal (in 3000 words), an indicative outline for the detailed research proposal is given below:

1. Topic : The research proposal should have a clear, meaningful and confirmed topic reflecting the scope of the investigation.

2. Introduction: The research proposal should begin by clearly stating the research problem to be investigated in the light of its theoretical and/or empirical context in the relevant area.

3. Objectives of the Study: The general aim of the study as well its specific objectives should be clearly stated in the proposal.

4. Research Questions or Hypotheses: Given the conceptual framework and the specification of dimension, the specific questions to be answered through the proposed research should be sharply formulated. In case of an explanatory research design, specification of variables and positing of relationship among them through specific hypotheses must form a part of the research proposal.

5. Review of Literature: (National and International)  The proposal should summarize the current status of research in the area and major findings, including the researcher’s own work in the area. Existing empirical findings may also be discussed. The overview should clearly demonstrate the relevance as well as inadequacy of existing findings or approaches and provide a rationale for the proposed study.

6. Research Methodology: The researcher must describe in detail (a) the scope and coverage of her/his study; and (b) approach and methodology with adequate justification. Emphasis should be given to bringing out innovativeness in approach proposed to be followed. The details of the methodology may include research design, data to be collected and empirical and analytical methods to be used. The description of the methodology must be clearly linked to the aims of the research and the research questions/hypotheses of the study.

7. Relevance and Expected Outcomes: The proposal should include a statement on the relevance of the study and the anticipated outcomes. It should bring out the significance of the research problem, the contribution which the proposed study is expected to make to theory and methodology as well as its practical importance to society and policy making. It should also describe the proposed outputs from the study (Books, research papers, occasional papers with themes, etc.)

8. Tentative Chapterisation: Detailed Chapterisation should be clearly spelt out in the research proposal

9. Bibliography: Bibliography should be prepared in Chicago Manual Style.

C) Notes on the Study Implications of research (in 500 words each):

(i)  How will the study contribute to the existing body of knowledge in area of research?     

(ii) What are the expected implications of the study for policy planning and future researches in the area?

D)  A note on the present stage of doctoral work (in 100 words each):

       (a) What is the expected duration of the work and what is its stage at the time of submission of  application?

      (b) The work that remains to accomplished in the remaining period of the Ph.D. and their time-wise milestones