The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), of the Government of India, has issued the official notification for applying for the DUO- India Fellowship Programme. This fellowship is being introduced in 2019 with a unique aim of promoting an exchange of students and faculty between India and the European countries on a permanent and balanced basis. The HRD Ministry said that the DUO- India Fellows will be selected once a year. Applications for the fellowship will be accepted from 15th July 2019 to 31st August 2019.
In a statement, the HRD Ministry said that in order to improve and enhance the research ecosystem in the institutions of Higher Education in the country, SPARC (Scheme for the Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration) was launched in the year 2018. The project of SPARC promotes research projects that are undertaken jointly by reputed foreign and Indian institutions.
DUO- India Fellowship Programme is being launched to further improve and strengthen the collaboration under SPARC. Only the institutions that are a part of Joint Research Projects undertaken by SPARC are eligible to participate in this programme.
DUO- India will start from 2020 and it aims at funding 100 student pairs for exchanges for one semester in order to improve mobility between the European and Indian institutes. As of now, a total of 14 European countries which are a part of the SPARC programme are eligible for this fellowship. These countries are Belgium, Austria, Denmark, France, Finland, Netherlands, Italy, Portugal, Norway, Sweden, Spain, UK, and Switzerland.
It is essential for the applicants to be members of the scientific or academic staff of institutes that come under the SPARC collaboration. However, students, Ph.D scholars, honorary professors, professors emeritus, and teaching assistants will not be entitled to the fellowship.