Inlaks Scholarships for PhD Students
Written by Ben Taylor
Inlaks Scholarships provide a fantastic funding opportunity for Indian students to do a PhD abroad at one of the world’s top universities. The scholarships are available in a range of subjects, offering up to USD $100,000 in financial support.
This guide will explain how the Inlaks Scholarships work, who is eligible and how to apply for one. We’ve also covered the other kind of research grant that the Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation provides to Indian PhD students.
What is the Inlaks Scholarship?
The Inlaks Scholarship is an initiative from the Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation, a philanthropic organisation dedicated to helping Indians access study abroad opportunities.
The funding is worth up to USD $100,000 (INR 78 Lakhs) and is tenable for PhD study (as well as Masters) at universities in the USA, UK and across Europe. This financial support is intended as a contribution towards your tuition fees, living costs, health insurance and travel expenses.
The Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation has a close relationship with the following universities, which enables them to offer more than USD $100,000 through a joint scholarship arrangement:
Inlaks Scholarships are offered in most subjects, but the following areas aren’t eligible for funding:
- Business and Finance
- Computer Science
- Engineering (unless you’re planning to complete a PhD at Imperial College)
- Fashion Design
- Film and Film Animation (with the exception of Documentary Filmmaking)
- Hospitality and Tourism
- Indian Studies (unless it has contemporary significance)
- Management Studies
- Medicine, Dentistry, and related therapies
- Music (with the exception of Western Classical singing)
- Public Health
Bear in mind that your PhD can’t involve a field trip to India during the period covered by the scholarship.
Inlaks Research and Travel Grant (IRTG)
The Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation also provides financial support for PhD students who are currently doing a PhD in India, with the Inlaks Research and Travel Grant (IRTG) designed to enable them to complete short-term study abroad placements at foreign universities.
This kind of funding is only available in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Covering up to three months of research abroad, the IRTG offers the following benefits:
- Travel expenses of up to USD $1,000
- Living costs of up to USD $2,000 per month
- An allowance towards research materials and healthcare
In order to apply, you’ll need to provide a 3,000- to 5,000-word sample of your written work, a statement from your supervisor, two letters of reference and evidence that you’ve been in touch with your prospective university abroad.
Applications usually open in mid-July, with a deadline at the beginning of September.
Eligibility for the Inlaks PhD Scholarship
There are several main eligibility criteria that you’ll need to satisfy in order to successfully apply for an Inlaks Scholarship. You must:
- Be an Indian national living in India at the time of application
- Have a good Bachelors degree from an Indian university – if your undergraduate degree is from a foreign university, you’ll need to have been living in India for at least two years since graduating
- Start your PhD within nine months of receiving the Inlaks Scholarship
- Be 30 or younger in the year that you make your application (so, if you’re born in 1993 you’ll be eligible for a 2023 scholarship)
If you’ve already completed a Masters or PhD at a university abroad, you’re ineligible for an Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship. Similarly, if you’ve already begun a PhD abroad you can’t apply for this scholarship.
These are the minimum academic requirements you’ll need to meet:
- Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences – 65%, CGPA 6.8, or GPA 2.6
- Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics – 70%, CGPA 7.2, or GPA 2.8
You’ll also need to meet the English language requirements of your prospective university – and provide proof of this to the Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation.
How to apply for an Inlaks Scholarship
Before applying for an Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship, you’ll first need to have received a PhD offer from your preferred university in the USA, UK or Europe. Find out more about applying for a PhD.
The application process for Inlaks Scholarships takes place through an online portal, usually opening in January or February each year. You’ll need to supply the following documents:
- Two letters of reference (one of which must be academic)
- Proof of acceptance onto a PhD programme
- A copy of your passport
- Information on the tuition fees and health insurance costs associated with your PhD
- Your portfolio (if relevant to your PhD proposal)
If your estimated costs of your PhD are higher than the USD $100,000 provided by an Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship, you’ll need to provide proof that you can afford the difference.
The deadline for submitting your application is usually at the end of March or the start of April.
The Inlaks Selection Committee will shortlist scholarship applicants, conducting an initial round of interviews with chosen candidates, then a final interview with those who have passed both stages.