A recently announced fellowship opportunity will enable recent PhD gradautes from institutes in Karnataka to pursue an independent research project in an institute in the Boston area for a year. The fellowship, called Boston Bangalore Biotechnology Beginnings (B4) is a result of a collaboration between the Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology (IBAB), Bangalore and the Harvard South Asia Institute (SAI), Boston. The SAI is a university-wide research institute at Harvard that engages faculty members, students, and in region institutions through interdisciplinary programs to further Harvard University’s engagement with South Asia.
“The long-term vision is to establish connections between institutes in India and the rich ecosystem of universities in Boston, ” said Jagadish Mittur, who heads the Biotechnology Facilitation Cell, Karnataka Biotechnology and Information Technology Services (KBITS). KBITS, Department of IT, BT and S&T, Government of Karnataka, was involved in formulating the collaboration and enabled IBAB as the nodal agency. IBAB will coordinate the B4 program activities through a B4 Program Management Committee (B4 - PMC) with representatives from SAI and IBAB and their respective partner institutions. The Institute will also manage the program’s finances and administration.
Fellowship applicants should have completed their PhD within the last five years from an institution in India. Senior PhDs with exceptional profiles will also be considered. They must be affiliated to a B4 Program Partner Institution in Karnataka, working in one of the following disciplines: systems and synthetic biology, neurosciences, genomics and bioinformatics, and soft robotics and biomedical engineering. SAI has a list potential lab sites from Harvard University, Boston University and MIT for selected applicants. In addition, during the fellowship period, Fellows will be connected with faculty across institutions and participate in seminars at Harvard organised by SAI for Fellows to communicate their research to a broader audience. At the end of the program, Fellows will share their science and experiences at a colloquium organised in India.
“We hope that the Fellows will bringing back a knowledge of novel and topical technologies and experimental methods to investigate biological issues. The exposure to advanced research areas will facilitate initiating such areas in the country,” said N Yathindra, Professor at IBAB, involved in the B4 Fellowship. He added that exposure to world-class research at Boston would build confidence in young students to develop their own areas of research and venture into novel areas of applied research, which may be beneficial to biomedical science entrepreneurship in India.
The deadline for submitting applications is July 30, 2016.