UGC woos NRI scholars

Global invitation to fill 200 faculty positions in science, technology depts

Union Minister for Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal on Thursday launched a dynamic interactive web portal created exclusively for the purpose. The portal can be used by scholars to submit their applications online and would enable the process from selection to shortlisting can be conducted online.

“Its like a brain gain programme. Lot of scholars (settled abroad) have evinced interest in coming back to India,” Sibal said adding that the number of seats will be increased to 2000 in next few years and 20,000 in ten years.

The UGC has created positions of lecturers, readers and professors as part of its new initiative -- faculty recharge programme—to strengthen  research and faculty resources in various universities across the country.

The positions are open to Indian nationals living at home or abroad, including those not in service. They will be selected through a nationwide competitive process to fill in 80 lecturer, 80 reader and 40 professorial positions.

UGC appointments

According to UGC, the initial tenure of the appointments at each level will be for a period of 5 years, which can be terminated, extended or elevated to the next higher level following a peer group review.

Subsequent evaluations will also follow a five year cycle but the ‘faculty recharge’ positions can in principle be carried through to superannuation, which is presently at 65 years.

While a PhD with post-doctoral experience and substantial publication record could be a common minimum requirement, the selection committees can decide at what level a particular candidate fits depending on the individual accomplishments and professional standing.

Each candidate will be required to submit research project which would be appropriately funded along with start up grant for setting up basic laboratory facilities, if selected under the programme.Final selection will be done through personal interview of scholars living in India while applicants from overseas could be interviewed through video conferencing. Selected candidates will be placed through harmonisation of their own preference, response of the host institution and availability of infrastructure for the execution of the project.

Faculty shorfall

The programme is aimed at strengthening research and innovative teaching in universities at a time when Indian varsities are facing shortage of faculties. Central universities reported 33 per cent shortfall in teaching staff. The programme is expected to reinvigorate and strengthen science departments in universities.

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