UK : Oxford-Indira Gandhi Graduate Scholarships

The Oxford Graduate Scholarships have been established through a groundbreaking new matched funding initiative to enable the creation of fully-funded scholarships for graduate students of the highest calibre from across the world. 2013-14 saw the first Oxford Graduate Scholars begin their studies.

Scholarships are awarded to applicants who have demonstrated excellent academic ability, who will contribute to the University’s groundbreaking research, and who will go on to contribute to the world as leaders in their field, pushing the frontiers of knowledge. The University contributes 40% of the funds for these scholarships, together with 60% from generous donations provided by numerous supporters of the University and its colleges.

Somerville College and the University of Oxford have established the Oxford-Indira Gandhi Graduate Scholarships with the generous support of the Government of India. The scholarships are available to candidates ordinarily resident in India or graduates of universities in India, who demonstrate exceptional academic merit and who have been accepted to study at the University of Oxford in areas broadly related to sustainable development.

The Oxford India Centre for Sustainable Development, currently being developed by Somerville College, aims to equip India’s future leaders in sustainable development with the skills and academic training they need to tackle the challenges that India and the world face in sustainable development. Oxford-Indira Gandhi Graduate Scholars are an important part of the Centre; they will be expected to return to India at the end of their studies to teach others in India and to play a leading role in tackling sustainable development problems. The Centre’s programme is designed to translate leading-edge research into positive social impact in India.

The scholarship will cover 100% of University and college fees and a grant for living costs (of at least £13,863). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for the agreed course.

Scholarship outcomes

The current status of the scholarship application process is summarised under Scholarship status on this page. During the application process, this will be updated from green (open for applications), to yellow (applications closing soon), to red (applications are closed and the selection process is underway) and finally to blue (the selection is complete and successful applicants have been informed).

Decisions are expected to be made around April 2015. If you have not heard from us by the time this page is updated to say that successful applicants have been notified, then please assume that your application has been unsuccessful. Due to the volume of applications we receive, we regret that we are unable to contact unsuccessful applicants individually or provide feedback on applications.


You should be applying to start a new graduate course at Oxford. The following courses are eligible: 

  • All DPhils
  • MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management
  • MSc in Contemporary India
  • Master of Public Policy
  • MSc in Water Science, Policy and Management
  • MSc in Environmental Change and Management
  • MPhil in Development Studies
  • Bachelor of Civil Law (BCL)

You must be ordinarily resident in India or have previously studied at an Indian higher education institution.

Applications for Oxford-Indira Gandhi DPhil Scholarships are welcome from candidates whose proposed area of study is relevant to the Centre’s agenda of inter-disciplinary research on sustainable development and India. The Centre focuses on a series of impact themes: food and water security, energy, environmental conservation, medical research and healthcare, law, governance and gender (e.g. the empowerment of women). Independent proposals on any India-related theme that fits within the overall aims of the Centre are welcome.

Scholarships will be awarded on the basis of academic merit, relevance to the Centre’s inter-disciplinary aim, as well as on applicants’ understanding of the development challenges faced by India, and their leadership and entrepreneurial potential.

Please ensure that you meet the selection criteria for your course (see the Courses page for more information).

This scholarship is not open to applications from candidates who hold deferred offers to start in 2015-16.

If your scholarship is offered for a course lasting more than one year, the continuation of your scholarship each year is subject to an annual renewal process based upon satisfactory academic progress.

How to Apply

There is no separate application process for this scholarship: in order to be considered, you must submit your application for graduate study by the relevant January deadline for your course (9 January 2015 for Medical Sciences, Philosophy, Politics & International Relations and Computer Science; 23 January 2015 for all other subjects). If you do not apply by the deadline, you will not be considered for this scholarship.

We will use the details you insert in the ‘Nationality and ordinary residence’ section of the graduate application form to assess your country of ordinary residence. For a definition of ordinary residency and further details on how to complete this section of the graduate application form, please see the ‘Nationality and ordinary residence’ section of the graduate application form and also the Application guide.

We will use the details you insert in the ‘About your qualifications and existing fields of study’ section of the graduate application form to determine your previous education institutions. For further details on how to complete this section of the graduate application form, please see the ‘About your qualifications and existing fields of study’ section of the graduate application form and also the Application guide

To be eligible for consideration for this scholarship, applicants must be successful in being offered a place on their course after consideration of applications received by the relevant January deadline for the course. Course applications which are held over after the January deadline to be re-evaluated against applications received by the March deadline or course applications which have been put on a waiting list are not eligible for scholarship consideration.

Please note, if you are accepted onto a different course from the one you originally applied for, you should contact us as soon as you are notified of the change in order to ensure that your application for a scholarship is maintained on your new course. A change of course may mean that you are no longer eligible for this scholarship.

Further Information

Application Deadline : 9 January 2015

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