Newton-Bhabha PhD Placement Programme notification

Are you doing a PhD and looking for a placement? Official notification of Newton-Bhabha PhD Placement Programme 2020-21 has been released. Applications are requested from the Indian and UK nationals. Interested and eligible applicants can check out all the details like programme details, eligibility criteria, funding details, the application process etc. in this article.

About the Programme

UK Government Newton-Fund and Government of India's Department of Science and Technology (DST), Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) are collaboratively offering a PhD placement programme 2020. The main aim of this placement programme is to provide a fund named Newton Bhabha Fund which provides a short-term placement opportunity of about 2 to 4 months to the PhD students at higher education or research institutes of the UK and India to research some focussed areas.

Benefits of the Programme

The Newton-Bhabha Fund programme will provide the international training and support to the PhD scholars and will create research awareness so that the highly trained researchers can be developed by participation and collaboration of UK and India PhD Scholars.

Subject Areas Covered

Major core areas that are covered under the programme include Biological & Medical Sciences, Engineering & Physical Sciences, Environment and Agriculture and Social Science. These areas further include several that can include the following subject for which applications are invited:
  • Biological and Medical sciences: it includes Life Sciences, Biotechnology, Bioengineering, Bioprocesses, Bioinformatics, Systems Biology, Bio-mechanics, Neuro-biology, Planetary, Health, Ecosystems and sustainability, Botany, Zoology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, Medicine, Pharma and Veterinary Sciences.
  • Engineering and Physical sciences: They include Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Physical Mathematics, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Big Data and Manufacturing.
  • Environment, Ecology, Food and Agriculture Sciences, Public Health and Well-being.
  • Social Sciences: It includes Economics, Sociology, Political Science, History, Anthropology, Geography, Education, Development & Policy studies, Statistics/Big Data Studies, Health Studies, and Environmental Studies.

Details of Grants

For UK Scholars: UK Scholars will get GBP 900 from the British Council to incur the travel expenses (economy class international return airfare), visa fee to India, and travel insurance. DST / DBT / ICSSR will also provide a grant to the UK scholar that will include INR 10,000 for onetime arrival allowance in India, a stipend of INR 31,000 per month and an accommodation allowance @ 8 % or 16 % or 24 % of the stipend amount of INR 31,000, based on the class of the city, as per Government of India rules. Tuition fees, experiment fees, and basic teaching material costs will not be charged from UK scholars.

For Indian scholars
The British Council will provide bench fees in the UK a maximum of GBP 5,000 for STEM and Life Sciences Indian Scholars and GBP 3,000 for Social Sciences Indian Scholars. Consumables costs will not be waived off by the UK host universities. Besides, Indian scholars will get a stipend of UK– GBP 1300 per month to cover meals, accommodation, domestic travel, etc.
Apart from this, DST/DBT/ICSSR will provide a maximum of INR 1,00,000 towards the travel grant per scholar for visa fees of Indian scholars, economy class international return airfares as GoI rules and travel and medical insurance as per GoI rules.
Note: Grant will be paid directly to the institutes in two instalments.

Number of Placements Offered

Under this scheme of Newton-Bhabha Fund, there will be a total 35 PhD scholar supported by the DST and the British Council. These students must be STEM scholar from the pool of INSPIRE Fellows, whereas DBT will support total 35 PhD scholar in Life Sciences (other than INSPIRE fellows) in collaboration with the UK Council. On the other hand, the ICSSR and British Council will support up to 30 PhD Scholars in Social Sciences.

Who can Apply?

  1. Students from India and the UK will be supported by the Scheme.
  2. Students must be a PhD scholar in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Life Sciences and Social sciences.
  3. For UK Applicants: PhD Scholars from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are eligible to apply.
  4. For Indian Applicants: Indian PhD scholars enrolled at Indian HEIs are eligible to apply. For DST funding, INSPIRE PhD Senior Research Fellows (SRFs) of Batch 2017 are eligible. For DBT funding, third-year Life Sciences PhD scholars are eligible. For ICSSR funding, PhD scholars or ICSSR Doctoral Fellows who are in 2nd or 3rd year of their PhD programme can apply.

Other Requirements

  • Both Indian and UK scholars who are applying for placement programme must have a valid passport before applying.
  • PhD thesis of the applicants is required to be submitted only after completion of the placement.

Application Process

For Indian Applicants:
The application form is to be submitted online. The candidates must visit the official website of British Council and after filling all the required details should submit the form.

Application Form (for Indians):

For UK applicants:
The UK applicants should visit the below-mentioned web-portal and submit the application form after filling the complete information.

Application form: (for UK applicants):

Important Document Required

To confirm that host institute will host the PhD scholar and support at academic and country-level, fees and accommodation etc., a letter of endorsement will be required from both sending and receiving institutes. The endorsement letter in pdf format from the Head of the Department of the host institute must accompany the application form. Or an email can also be sent by the HOD from the host institution. It must be stated in the endorsement letter that the acknowledgement of support received under Newton-Bhabha PhD Placement Programme will be done in all the publications that will arise from the work undertaken during the placement. In the endorsement letters issued from the UK, universities must mention bench fees and details of its utilization.

Note: In case, if any candidate cannot provide an endorsement letter, his/her applications will be rejected.

Important Dates

  • Start of Registration: June 15, 2020
  • End of Application Submission: September 02, 2020; 1600 hrs UK time; 20:30 hrs India time
  • Declaration of Results: November 2020
  • Placements to be undertaken: Between April 2021 to December 2021
  • Release of funding of 1st portion of grant: By the end of February 2021

Contact Details

For British Council India:
Purti Kohli -

For the Department of Science and Technology (DST):
Ms Tamana Arora -

For the Department of Biotechnology (DBT):
Dr Ketan Thorat -

For the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR):
Mr Mahesh Madhukar -

Important link:
Newton-Bhabha Fund Scheme web link:,April%202021%20and%20December%202021.


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