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HRD Ministry and UGC Unveil Plan to Promote ‘Nationally Important PhD Research

The scheme, dubbed ‘Scheme for Trans-disciplinary Research for India’s Developing Economy’ (STRIDE), will focus on integrated research that combines the study of different disciplines.

Uday Singh Rana | CNN-News18@UdaySRana

Updated:July 2, 2019, 2:54 PM IST
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HRD Ministry and UGC Unveil Plan to Promote ‘Nationally Important PhD Research
HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank (Image : Facebook).

New Delhi: With the Narendra Modi government entering its second term in office, the Ministry for Human Resource Development (MHRD) and University Grants Commission (UGC) have unveiled their plan to promote “socially relevant” and “nationally important” doctoral research.

The scheme, dubbed ‘Scheme for Trans-disciplinary Research for India’s Developing Economy’ (STRIDE), will focus on integrated research that combines the study of different disciplines.

The government said it hopes to create research that will have “practical use” outside of academia as well. Candidates selected for this scheme will be given grants up to Rs 5 crores for their research projects.

The HRD Ministry in a statement said the scheme would support capacity building for research that can “contribute to national priorities”.

Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal said, “STRIDE scheme will strengthen research culture and innovation in colleges and Universities and help students and faculty to contribute towards India’s developing economy with help of collaborative research.”

The Ministry is also likely to focus on research into Indian languages. “Focus on Humanities and Human Sciences will boost quality research on Indian languages and knowledge systems,” the HRD Minister added.

STRIDE is divided into three distinct components. The first component aims at identifying young research scholars from across the country who will work towards solving problems that are local, regional, national and global in nature. This first component brings in the “practical” and “problem-solving” part of the scheme and is open to all disciplines with grants up to Rs 1 crore.

The second component aims to work towards research focused on India’s economic development and will involve students collaborating with government organizations, NGOs, universities and industries. Students can get a grant between Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore.

The third and final component will focus on research in humanities and will involve students working with a “national network of eminent scientists from leading institutions”. The disciplines open to this component are philosophy, history, archaeology, anthropology, psychology, liberal arts, linguistics, Indian languages and culture, Indian knowledge systems, law, education, journalism, mass communication, commerce, management, environment and sustainable development.

The government has set up an advisory committee under UGC Vice Chairman Bhushan Patwardhan to oversee the scheme. Applications for STRIDE will be accepted from July 31.

HRD Secretary R Subrahmanyam said, “The National Innovation Foundation has a database of over 3 lakh technological ideas from over 608 districts waiting to be explored. STRIDE scheme will help students and faculty to undertake collaborative research to explore these knowledge resources for India’s developing economy. The ten grand challenges facing the humanities in India described in report to MHRD are part of thrust areas identified for funding under STRIDE.”

UGC Chairman DP Singh said, “STRIDE will provide support to the innovative research projects that are socially relevant, locally need-based, nationally important and globally significant.”

UGC Vice chairman Bhushan Patwardhan, who will also head the advisory committee, said, “The three components of STRIDE will help strengthening trans-disciplinary research culture in colleges and universities.

It will provide opportunity to build multi-sectoral linkages between university-government-community-industry for national development and wellbeing of people. In addition, STRIDE will give major impetus to high impact research in Humanities and Human Sciences.”

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