Particularly designed for Indian students, Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowship allows you to take placement of six to nine months at an institution in the US. If you are currently registered as a PhD research scholar in any of the universities in India, you can avail yourself of this opportunity. 

Scholarship summary

    • Country: United States
    • Funded by: United States-India Educational Foundation (USIEF)
    • Scholarship Type: Merit-based 
    • University: Universities in the US
    • Degree Level: PhD. Degree
    • Financial Coverage: Fully Funded
    • Scholarship Deadline: July 17, 2023 for 2024 – 2025 awards 

Study Fields 

Indian research scholars from various disciplines are invited to apply for Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowships. The selection of candidates is based more on the quality of the research proposal. Your exceptional academic and professional record will make you stand out, and your leadership skills will definitely increase your chances of getting accepted for the fellowship. 

With an innovative and well-defined research proposal, you can study in any of the following programs:

  • Engineering and Technology 
  • Medicine and Public Health
  • Law and Legal Studies
  • Environmental Studies and Sustainability
  • Sciences (including Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Biological Sciences)
  • Education and Educational Administration
  • Economics
  • Public Policy
  • Women and Gender Studies
  • Neuroscience
  • Performing Arts
  • Humanities (Language & Literature, Philosophy, and Religion)
  • Psychology
  • History
  • Politics
  • Visual Arts
  • Geography
  • Agricultural Studies

As long as your research aligns with that of the Fulbright fellowship, applications are accepted from fields other than those mentioned above. 


To be eligible for Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Scholarship, you should fulfil the following conditions:

  • As an applicant, you must be an Indian citizen and should reside in India. 
  • At the time of application, you should have a completed masters or equivalent degree in any field of study. 
  • In order to demonstrate your proficiency in English, you should have a valid IELTS or TOEFL score. 
  • Your strong leadership potential and an exceptional academic record will make you stand out among the other applicants.
  • You should be registered for a PhD program at any university in India. 
  • Apart from the subject-specific master’s degree, you should also have research experience in your field. 

Other than the above-mentioned eligibility criteria, there are some conditions that you should fulfil in order to achieve a Nehru fellowship. 

  • You shouldn’t have dual US citizenship or US permanent residency. 
  • You won’t be considered for the fellowship if you have a recent US degree or are enrolled in any program in the US. 
  • You must return to your home, that is, India, on the completion of the fellowship. 
  • The applicant should not have received any Fulbright grant in the past five years. 
  • Your thesis submission date should be a minimum of three months after the completion of your fellowship in the US. 
  • If you have already completed your PhD, you are not eligible for the Fulbright Doctoral Research Fellowships. 

Scholarship Benefits

This highly prestigious fellowship has the following benefits to offer successful candidates:

    • Funding: You will receive funding until the completion of your program. The stipend covers tuition fees, living expenses, travel costs, and health insurance. 
    • Air Travel: You will get round-trip economy class travel tickets. 
    • Cultural Exchange: As the scholars move to the US, they will be exposed to the culture and traditions of America, which will allow them to think with a new perspective, generate new ideas, and change their way of thinking. 
  • Research Help: The scholars can get a chance to work in outstanding facilities and the best resources. They can also get the opportunity to learn from other highly experienced scholars in their field.
  • Gain Practical Work Experience: Apart from the usual research scholars will be involved in, they will also get the opportunity to gain practical work experience in the US. This will help them in career advancement, making them better job prospects. 

Remember that these grants are sufficient for the scholars themselves and do not support their family members in any way. The allowances are not provided to the dependents. 

Official Website

To get in detail information about the Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowship, you can click here to visit the official website. 

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying to this fellowship, you can follow the following steps:

  1. Visit the USIEF website and open the application portal
  2. Use a valid email that is in your use to register on the website. This email will be your user ID. 
  3. Create a password to secure your account and complete the registration. 
  4. An application form will appear where you need to fill in all the necessary details. This will include your personal and academic information. 
  5. Upload the necessary documents to complete the application form. You can prepare the documents beforehand to save yourself from hassle. 

The following section contains the details of the necessary documents that you might need at the time of application. 

Required Documents 

Along with the application, the applicant must have a number of documents to be considered for the fellowship. The documents may vary depending on the university you apply to. However, for a Fulbright fellowship, the documents that you generally need are as follows:

  • CV or Resume: Your Curriculum Vitae or Resume should include your academic information, achievements, research experience, and publications. It should also mention any other job experience you have. 
  • Admission Letter: By the time of application for this fellowship, you should have received an admission or invitation letter from the university in the US where you want to do your fellowship. It is necessary to attach that admission letter along. 
  • Language Proficiency Test: Attach the test score of IELTS or TOEFL to prove your English language proficiency. 
  • References: You need to provide a minimum of three reference letters from individuals who can evaluate your professional and academic achievements. 
  • Academic Transcripts: You must provide the official transcripts of all the academic transcripts you have achieved. 
  • Research Proposals: Your research proposal makes you stand out if it is innovative and well-composed. Make sure to carefully outline the research questions, methodology, timeline, and expected results from the proposed research. 
  • Copy of Passports: The passport copy you provide should be valid for six months beyond your stay in the US. 
  • Papers Presented in Master’s Program: Tell about the research work you have done in your master’s or equivalent degree 

Ensure that you have all these documents ready before you start filling out the application form. High-quality and well-composed research proposals will increase your chances of getting accepted for the Fulbright Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowship. 

The Selection Process

It is a competitive and highly rigorous process, which takes two to three months to review the applications. The applications go through a series of processes. Here is what goes after the due date:

  • All the applications are thoroughly screened for eligibility. 
  • Applications are shortlisted on the basis of academic achievements and research proposals. 
  • The shortlisted candidates are interviewed. This typically occurs in person by a panel of field experts. 
  • The candidates are selected based on their performance, application, and overall suitability. 
  • Selected candidates are notified via email or phone call.