The Start-up Research Grant (SRG) scheme aims to assist researchers to initiate their research career in a new institution. It is a two-year grant meant to enable researchers working in frontier areas of science and engineering to establish themselves and move on to the mainstream core research grant (CRG). Criteria for selection would be based on the track record of the applicant and the proposed research plan.
Proposals submitted need to be original and plagiarism in any form will not be acceptable. All submitted proposals would be subjected to a third party similarity check and proposals are liable to be rejected if found plagiarised. Any text taken verbatim from other source needs to be identified using quotation marks and proper reference. Applicants are requested to pre-check their proposals for plagiarism before uploading to avoid any serious repercussions at a later stage.
SERB has adopted Scientific Social Responsibility (SSR) Policy to imbibe a culture of social commitment among SERB Grantees. The policy intends to effectively utilize scientific infrastructure and expertise of SERB grantees to benefit other S&T stakeholders especially the less-endowed researchers and the society. SERB Grantees need to undertake some SSR activities during their project period. SSR activities need to be chosen after approval and depending on the activities chosen additional budget would be provided under separate head to carry out the chosen activities.
Q1. What is the age limit for availing SRG?
A1: The upper age limit for SRG is 42 years, with a relaxation of three years for SC/ST/OBC/ Physically challenged and women candidates.
Q2: What is the nature of support in SRG scheme?
A2: SRG is a one-time grant and carries a maximum research grant of Rs. 30 Lakhs (excluding overheads) for a period of two years.The research grant covers equipment, manpower, consumables, manpower, travel and contingency apart from overheads.
Q3: What is the duration of the SRG project? Can it be extended?
A3: SRG project period is of 2 years. Extension of the project period is not encouraged. Only in very rare and exceptional cases, depending on the necessity and progress of the project,no cost extension will be considered. Such period of extension will be limited to a maximum of six months.
Q4: When should I apply for SRG? Can I apply for the projects throughout the year?
A4: The Call for applications will be notified through the website www.serbonline.in and www.serb.gov.in . The application form along with a proper research proposal highlighting the research work to be undertaken should be submitted online through the website www.serbonline.in during the call opening period.
Q5: How should I apply for SRG?
A5: All applications should be submitted through the SERB online portal www.serbonline.in
Q6: Can I have a Co-PI in SRG project? Can I have a Mentor in SRG?
A6: Co-PI or Mentors are not allowed in this scheme. However, foreign nationals are mandated to have an Indian Co-PI.
Q7: : I am working abroad as post-doc, and I want to return to India. I intend to apply for SRG. But I have not yet finalized my place of work. Am I eligible to apply under the scheme?
A7: No. The applicant must hold a regular academic/research position in a recognized academic institution/ or national laboratories or any other recognized R&D institutions. Only after joining a research or academic institution, one can apply for the grants under this scheme.
Q8: I am implementing an SRG project for the last one year. Am I eligible to apply for another project under any other scheme/award or fellowship programs of SERB?
A8: In general, a PI is allowed to operate only one SERB project at a time. Exceptions are allowed for some specific calls under certain topics/programs/schemes. In all other cases, PIcan submit another proposal under regular schemes of SERB six months prior to the completion of the ongoing SRG project.
Q9: What documents should I send for receiving the next instalments of the grant?
A9: The PIs should upload annual Progress Report and financial statements at the end of each financial year. The release of the next instalment of the grant will be considered only after submission of (a) Proper Utilization Certificate (separately for recurring & Non-recurring) and Statement of Expenditure, financial year wise and (b) Annual Progress Report through the SERB online portal.
Q10: I intend to change my Host Institution? What procedure should I follow?
A10: Change of host institute will be considered only (i) from a private/public/government institution to any other public/government institution or (ii) General administrative transfers in government or public funded institutions. Change of institute will not be considered for any other cases. Change of host institution can be undertaken only after obtaining due approval from SERB. The transfer of the fellowship along with balance grant and the assets to the new institute is allowed, provided the administrative authority of both institutes agree in writing. NOC from the previous host institute and Endorsement Form from the new host Institute must be sent to SERB through the online portal.
Q11: What is the procedure for surrendering SRG project?
A11: For termination of the project, PIneed to inform the SERB through the host institution immediately. The implementing institute should not incur any expenditure from the date of termination of the project or the date of resignation of PI. The institute must also arrange for submission of relevant documents.
Q12: Can I be away from the implementing Institute when I am implementing the SRG project?
A12: The PIs must seek the consent of SERB if he/she intends to be away from the implementing institute (except for field work related to the project) continuously for a period more than eight weeks.
Q13: What should be done for the unspent grant under SRG project after the completion of the tenure of the project?
A13: The following documents should to be sent to the SERB after the duration of the project is completed:
1. Final Consolidated Statement of Expenditure (in duplicate), giving expenditure financial year wise (FY) from date of start till date of completion;
2. Utilization Certificates (FY wise) for all FYs (in duplicate) matching with Statement of Expenditure figures in that FY;
3. Project Completion Report (PCR) with list of publications, patents filed.
4. DD/ cheque for the unspent grant, drawn in favor of 'Fund for Science & Engineering Research'
5. Principal Investigator is responsible for the timely submission of progress report, utilization certificate, project closure report (PCR), refund of unspent balance amount etc. at end or early closure of the project.