What does STARS primarily support?

STARS program supports projects that further its mission of promoting translational, India- centric research in six basic thrust areas. The main idea is to identify a societally relevant problem and identify the scientific question that needs to be addressed.

What are the reporting requirements for funded grants?

We require periodic reports from the participating researchers. All reports must be submitted through our online portal. For more information please refer to the “System of Monitoring”.

Are there deadlines for submitting applications?

Yes, please refer to “Important Dates”  for the latest information. The deadlines are strict due to the large volume of applications that we expect to receive. Please be sure to submit before the specific time, which is generally 11:59 PM IST.

Can I submit more than one proposal for the same funding cycle?

You can be a PI on maximum one proposal, and co-PI on maximum two proposals for the same funding cycle. The two proposals can be under same or different subject categories.

When can I expect to hear about the decision on my proposal?

Please refer to “Important Dates”  for the latest information. Approved/selected proposals will be announced on the STARS website and the successful applicants will also be notified by email after the decision is made.

How long should my proposal be and what should it include?

Please follow the instructions provided in the online portal and maintain the word/page limits strictly.

Can I submit a project that is already under consideration for publication?

No. We do not support projects where the proposed research has already been circulated as a paper or submitted for publication.

What are the maximum amounts of funding?

Research Grants are generally limited to INR 50 Lakhs for single-PI projects and INR 100 Lakhs for projects with multiple PIs.

What is the duration of a research project?

Research projects are supported for maximum three years duration.

Do I have to use the online application system?

Yes. All applications must be submitted through the online portal at https://stars.iisc.ac.in/. Please contact us at support.stars@iisc.ac.in if you face any difficulties with the system.

Can students or technical staff submit proposal?

No, only permanent faculty members of the “Eligible Institutes” can submit proposals.

Can foreign citizens submit proposal?

Only if they are permanent faculty members of “Eligible Institutes”.

We are from a college that is not funded by MoE but affiliated to a university that satisfies the eligibility criteria. Can we submit proposals to STARS?

Only if your college/institute is specified in the list of “Eligible Institutes” approved by MoE. Please note that not all colleges may be eligible, even if they are affiliated to any eligible university.

Is PhD degree necessary to apply or PG degree is sufficient?

PG degree is enough to submit proposal provided the PI is a permanent faculty member.

Can co-PI be from a foreign institution?

No, co-PI needs to be a permanent faculty member in an Indian institution.

  Who is eligible to be a PI?

Permanent faculty member from any of the “Eligible Institutes” are eligible to be a PI.

Can a proposal have multiple PIs?

For each proposal, there will be one PI (who leads the project) and zero/one/more co-PIs.

What is the difference between PI and co-PI?

We define PI as the person who leads the project and each project can have only one lead PI. The other PIs are defined as co-PIs.

Who is eligible to be a co-PI and will all co-PI institutions be eligible to receive funds?

Permanent faculty members from any Indian institution can be a co-PI in principle. However, for co-PI institution to receive funds, it should be specified in the “Eligible Institutes” list. Hence, those from non-eligible institutions can participate as collaborators who do not require any registrations/administrative requirements during the proposal submission. As per the requirements of a study, details of collaborations can be elaborated within the proposal. Collaborator institution cannot request or receive grants, hence a PI cannot count a collaborator as a co-PI to propose a budget > 50L.

Should PI and all co-PIs upload endorsement letter?

Yes, endorsement letter should be uploaded separately by PI and co-PIs (if any) during the submission of the proposal. The endorsement submitted by PI needs to have only the endorsement of the head of organization of the PI. Similarly, endorsement submitted by co-PI needs to have only the endorsement of the head of organization of the co-PI.

How are proposals reviewed?

Proposals would be reviewed by Domain Expert Committees constituting experts from the pre-determined thrust areas, including experts from industry.

How will the funds be dispersed / allocated to the co-PI institutions?

The funds will only be dispersed to the PI institute and the PI institute will have to transfer funds to the co-PI institute based on the agreement between the PI and co-PI(s), provided the co-PI(s) institute is specified in the “Eligible Institutes” list.

Can PI and Co-PI request for separate funds and hence budgets?

Please note that the funds will only be transferred to the PI institute. It is PI’s responsibility to share funds with co-PI(s).

What should I do if my project needs IBSC approval?

In case the proposal requires (Institutional Biosafety Committees) IBSC approval, an IBSC certificate from the institute(s) where the experiments are carried out will be necessary. This can be uploaded by either the PI or the co-PI. In case they are unable to get the clearance within this period, they can upload a certificate on their letterhead stating that they have applied for IBSC clearance for the project. In case the project is approved, funds would only be released upon receipt of the final IBSC certificate.

© STARS, MHRD, Government of India