Industry Relevant R&D Scholarship by SERB


One of the most notable developments in the S&T sector in the XI Plan has been the setting up of the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) through an Act of Parliament, viz. the Science and Engineering Research Board Act, 2008. Promoting basic research in Science and Engineering and to provide financial assistance to persons engaged in such research, academic institutions, research and development laboratories, industrial concerns and other agencies for such research and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto are the primary and distinctive mandate of the Board.  SERB aims to build up best management systems which would match the best global practices in the area of promotion and funding of basic research.

The objective of the scheme is to utilize the expertise available in academic institutions and national laboratories to solve industry specific problems for the larger benefit of society.

(i). Academic Partner
• Indian citizens residing in India.
• The academic partner must hold a regular academic/research position in an academic institution or national laboratories or recognized R&D institutions. More than one academic partner may be allowed.

(ii). Industry partner
• All industries (including MSME & industrial R&D Centers) are eligible.
• More than one Industry and or more than one Investigator from one Industry can be associated in a project.

Nature of Proposals to be Supported:
The scheme is aimed at supporting ideas that address a well-defined problem of industrial relevance. The proposal, therefore, shall be jointly designed and implemented by the academic partner(which includes a partner from national laboratories/recognized R&D institutions as the case may be ) and industry. The participating industry should ensure that the objectives are industrially relevant. Routine proposals that address conventional problems and those not related to industry, or with already established approaches are not encouraged. SERB will not list out the industry relevant problems, and it will be the responsibility of the investigator and the industry to join together and come up with a proposal to solve the identified problem. Ideally, the proposal must contain the characteristics of any of the following :
•  Proposals that adopt an innovative approach to solve a problem faced by the industry.
• Proposals whose outcomes will bring new scientific and technological innovations.
• Solution driven research that aid technology transfer and commercialization.

Nature & Duration of Support:
• The funding shall be shared between SERB and Industry. The industry share should not be less than 50 % of the total budget. Overhead is provided to the academic partner. The SERB share shall not exceed Rs. 50 lakh for a project. The upper cap may be relaxed on case to case basis.
• The funding can be provided for a maximum period of three years.
• The support from SERB shall be extended only to the the academic partner and not to the industry. The research grant will be provided for equipment, manpower, consumables, travel, pilot plant study, and any other costs associated with the project. It is expected that the equipment will be installed in the institution where the academic partner is working.

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