Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme


Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship (DSKPDF) Scheme was introduced by the University Grants Commission (UGC) in year 2007 on the recommendation of the Empowered Committee (EC) chaired by Professor M. M. Sharma. In addition to the existing RA/PDF positions provided by various funding agencies, a need was felt for PDF scheme running in a flexible mode, with fast track, on-line handling and decision making. It was envisaged that the new PDF scheme must be tuned to the ground realities prevailing in our university system. The DSKPDF Scheme was also expected to provide an opportunity to many fresh Ph. D.‘s to overcome the deficiencies in training at the doctoral level research and to explore new areas of research in better settings in the Indian University Sector.

DSKPDF Scheme is open for full time research work, predominantly to young researchers preferably below 35 years of age who have awarded their Ph. D. Degree under science faculty. The Reservation Policy of Government of India with regard to SC/ST/OBC/PH is followed. Appropriate age relaxations for reserved category/​women candidates are given as per UGC guidelines. It is necessary that candidates identify Mentor for their postdoctoral Research work and obtain his/​her consent for the guidance. DSKPDF is tenable only at the Science Departments of Indian Universities and UGC-funded inter-University centers (such as IUCAA, IUAC, UGC-DAE-CSR etc.) which are eligible to receive Development grants from the UGC. Thus the fellowship is not tenable in I.I.T.’s or CSIR/DRDO/DAE laboratories etc. These are also not tenable in colleges (either Autonomous or affiliated). In general, the postdoctoral work should be undertaken in a place different from where the candidate has carried out his/​her doctoral studies. The Ph. D. Guide of the candidate cannot be chosen as his/​her mentor for DSKPDF.


Aspirant below 35 years of age (Up to 3, 5 and 10 years of age relaxation for OBC, SC/​ST/​Women and physically handicapped respectively is admissible), who are awarded a Ph. D. degree under science faculty are eligible to apply. It is necessary that candidate identifies a Mentor (affiliated to University/​Institute wherein DSK Fellowship is tenable) for his/​her postdoctoral Research work and obtain his/​her consent for the mentorship. Higher PDF (with marginally elevated stipend) is admissible for those applicants, identified as outstanding by standing (core) peer committee of reviewers. 

Teachers below age of 35, working on confirmed posts in Academic Institutes may also apply. However, along with the hard copy, they will be required to submit a certificate from their Head of the Institution (Registrar of University / Principal of a college) that the teacher will be given attest three years of sabbatical / special leave without financial support for carrying out their postdoctoral work. 

The fellowship will be awarded on a yearly basis with renewal/​termination clause on the basis of PDF mentor/​peer group appraisal. However, the maximum duration of the PDF award would be 3 years. No extension is possible under any circumstances. Candidates should give an undertaking while availing the award, along with the endorsement of the research mentor that they would stay in place for a minimum of six months. Once the candidate is awarded the DSKPDF, and he/​she joins the fellowship, he/​she will not eligible to apply ever again for DSKPDF in the same or other workplace. 

If applicant has already applied for Dr. D. S. Kothari Postdoctoral Fellowship and has been declared as unsuccessful, he/​she is permitted to apply freshly with new research proposal only after one year from date of declaration of the earlier result.

To Apply

Please go through the important links below

Application procedure


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