Facilities and Benefits
New Faculty Seed Grant (NFSG), instituted to aspire the research motivated and bright faculty members to pursue high-quality research, is an initial support to the regular faculty members (Assistant Professors Grade-I and above), offered faculty positions with us since July 01, 2022 in Pilani, Goa, Hyderabad and Dubai campuses.
- Faculty members in the category mentioned above may apply for the NFSG Seed Grant in a prescribed format, through the Department Head
- The deadline for submission of the NFSG project proposal is normally six months from the date of joining of the new faculty members. The proposal submission deadline will follow the below-mentioned timelines: For faculty members who joined by Mar 31, 2023 against the offer made after July 01 2022* : Submission deadline is Oct 30, 2023. For the rest, the same is Dec 31, 2023. Henceforth the deadlines for proposal submission will be the last day of April, Aug and December of every year. Faculty members who were not in the purview of the last call of the Additional Competitive Research Grant scheme may wish to apply for NFSG and will be considered based on basic eligibility criteria.
- Application & Evaluation process:
- The faculty member will submit a detailed research proposal (using a specific format which will be available on the SRCD/FAD website), to the Head of the Department (HOD), outlining the background of the area of research, an unambiguous statement of the problem, defined objectives and expected outcomes
- The HOD will endorse the proposal and forward all seed grant proposals to the office of Associate Dean, FAD. The proposal will be subsequently, forwarded by the office of Associate Dean FAD to the office of Associate Dean, SRCD for further processing.
- The campus Director will form a committee called New Faculty Seed Grant Committee (NFSGC). The composition of the committee is to be decided by the Campus Director, which should have equal representation of Engineering/Science/Humanities faculty members, preferably at the level of Professor.
- The NFSGC will evaluate the proposal, and the PI will be asked for a short presentation
- If the NFSG proposal amount exceeds 10 lakhs, it will undergo an external review. A pool of external reviewers will be created for this by the Departments. The external examiner will be expected to rate from A to E (with A being the highest) and provide some qualitative comments.
- Based on the recommendations received from NFSG committee members and the external experts (wherever applicable), the campus Director will approve the FSG proposal and order for the release of the Faculty Seed Grant amount.
- Selection criteria :The selection of an NFSG proposal will be purely based on merit and its relevance in the current context. The proposed plan of research
- should be sustainable and preferably belongs to the thrust areas of departmental research or university research.
- should embrace achievable research goals with identifiable outcomes like publications, patent filing, PhD student supervising and igniting new collaborations at national and international levels.
- Has the potential to attract external funding
Funding and Budget :
- The funding of New Faculty Seed Grant (NFSG) is variable in nature. The Grant amount will vary depending on the faculty member’s need for equipment, consumables and manpower, with a maximum cap of Rs. 20 lakhs.
- A matching/top up grant up to 20 lakhs may be provided to upgrade the proposed/sanctioned equipment associated with an externally funded proposal. The operational guidelines for this will be rolled out at a later point of time
- The NFSG grant will be released in two instalments over a period of two years in two FY unless it is meant for equipment purchase etc. which requires submission of budget plan for two years
- Grant already allocated/committed (RIG/ACRG/OPERA**) may be adjusted against the maximum cap of NFSG. **Faculty members with OPERA are entitled to receive a monthly honorarium which will continue for 36 months counted from the first month of execution of the award
Project Duration and Reporting:
- The duration of the NFSG is 2 years.
- The grant amount will be released in 2 installments in two FY.
- The Principal Investigator (PI) is required to submit the Statement-Of-Expenditure (SOE) and Utilization Certificate (UC) to SRCD after the completion of the first year and seek the release of the 2nd quantum of fund support. It is proposed that the unused money may be carried forward or adjusted against the 2nd installment.
- At the end, the PI is required to submit the project completion report in the prescribed format (format will be shared on the SRCD website) along with the SOE and UC of the total cost of the project.
- The progress of the research project may be reviewed by an internal committee in an annual basis which will be designed by the two interfacing divisions, SRCD and FAD.
- PIs are advised to acknowledge the research support received from the New Faculty Seed Research Grant in their journal publications, workshop/conference proceedings and in places wherever applicable.
Guidelines of expenditure:
- The funds may be used to purchase specialized research equipment* (maximum 80% of the grant), computers, workstations, tablets, printers, databases, servers, storage systems, network equipment, software and laboratory supplies (chemicals/glasswares/plasticware), sample collection and analysis. *If two or more faculty members wish to combine their equipment grant to procure major equipment, it may be considered.
- The funds may also be used to buy books and subscribe to journals unavailable at BITS
- The funds may be used to travel to technical conferences/ workshops/ symposium or for travel for the purpose of data collection, meetings, or to initiate collaborations. (Maximum 10% of the total grant)
- The fund can partly be used to give fellowship to UG and ME students working on the project problem but not to the PhD students. (Maximum 15% of the total grant)
- (a) No formal approval from SRCD/FAD/Dean Admin/Director is required if the expenditure (for purchases of materials like lab consumables, contingency items etc.) is below Rs. 25,000. Further, in a semester cumulative amount should not be more than Rs. 1.5 lakhs.
(b) Formal approval from SRCD/FAD/Dean Admin/Director is required if the expenditure exceeds Rs. 25,000.
- The necessary NFA formats will be made available to the PIs by the SRCD/FAD in their website.
- The unspent amount of the NFSG grant will NOT be carried forward after the project completion period.
- The PI has to ensure that equipment is available for other users in the institute.
Dissemination of Research and Publications:
- It is expected that the faculty members availing NFSG should be ready with one grant proposal at the end of the first year which may be used as a precursor for a substantial proposal after completion of NFSG.
- The NFSG PI should publish their works in peer-reviewed Journals and International/National repute conference proceedings.
- PI will be able to collaborate with people outside BITS Pilani.
- PI will acknowledge the NFSG support in their journal publications and workshop/conference proceedings.
NFSG : New Faculty Seed Grant
NFSGC : New Faculty Seed Grant Committee
FAD : Faculty Affairs Division
SRCD: Sponsored Research and Consultancy Division
RIG: Research Initiation Grant
ACRG: Additional Competitive Research Grant
HOD: Head of the Department
SOE: Statement of Expenditure
UC: Utilization Certificate
FY: Financial Years
NFA: Note for Approval
Duration of Chair:
Research grant and honorarium:
- The research grant, made available at the beginning of the year, may be used for any academic purpose (including hiring of Research students/staff, undertake domestic or international travel by you or your students or your colleagues, or incur expenses towards specialized training in India or abroad, or procure equipment, supplies and books or source support services, or invite your collaborators for short visits to BITS, Pilani etc.) and to draw, at his/her option, an honorarium of Rs. 15,000 per month for the duration that he/she is appointed against the Chair. The faculty so appointed as “XXX Chair” will operate the research grant in a manner similar to the way he/she currently operate a sponsored R&D project. The unutilized funds at the end of the tenure of the appointment against the Chair, if any, shall be ploughed back to the endowment fund.
- Unless otherwise agreed to in the MoU, or by the Vice Chancellor, the following guidelines will be used to spend the research grant, less any honorarium drawn by him/her: up to 60% for domestic or international travel, upto 25% for training, upto 100% for research students/staff, equipment, books and supplies, upto 25% for support services.
- For each individual Chair the research grant (between Rs. 3 lakhs to Rs. 6 lakhs) will depend upon the earning that accrues from investing the corresponding corpus of the Chair, or as agreed upon in the MoU that provided for the establishment of the Chair.
Salary and benefits
Intellectual property rights
- Act as an enabling mechanism to attract motivated and high quality faculty to any of the BITS campuses.
- To provide BITS system with an competitive edge in faculty recruitment related issues.
- Any new faculty of BITS appointed at the level of an Assistant Professor, Grade-I in Academic Level-12 or above, being recruited for any of the campuses of BITS.
- Guidelines to reimburse relocation expenses by those appointed as Lecturers or as visiting faculty are also included.
- Theses will be equally applicable to existing BITS faculty who are relocating to other BITS campuses or off campus centers.
- The reimbursement of any International relocation will normally not exceed Rs. one lakh for reasonable actuals.
- The reimbursement for relocation in India will normally not exceed Rs. 50,000/- for reasonable actuals.
- These norms will also be applicable for relocation of BITS faculty to other BITS campuses or off campus centers.
Guidelines for Expenditure
- The funds may be used for transportation charges by AIR/RAIL/CAR/BUS as per eligibility from starting location to the campus of BITS for the faculty member as well as his dependents. International travel will be permitted by economy class only. Domestic travel will be by AC II Tier Rail as per Institute Rules. Separate approval should be taken for any other mode of transportation.
- The funds may be used to transport personal and household goods.
- In case husband and wife are recruited to the same campus, expenses to relocate household goods from one location only will be entertained and will be subject to limits mentioned above.
- In case faculty at the level of Lecturer or Visiting faculty requires relocation, the maximum limit of expenditure allowable will be half the maximum amount permissible for regular faculty.
- The relocation expenses will have to be paid back to BITS if a faculty resigns before completion of 3 years in service.
- In case of Visiting Faculty the relocation expenses will have to be refunded to BITS on prorate basis in case the faculty member leaves before the term of his/her appointment is over. No refund will need to be made in case he/she completes three years at BITS.
- Faculty from International locations relocating to BITS via domestic (home) visit route may only claim for travel to the respective campuses via the shortest/least expensive route.
- All reimbursements will be done after faculty joins. However, prior approval before finalizing travel plans has to be taken.
- Enable up gradation of computer systems and accessories, and thus enhancing faculty creativity and productivity.
- Enhance faculty morale, to help retain motivated and talented faculty.
- Provide for computers and peripherals for all newly joined faculty.
- Any faculty of BITS appointed in India at the level of Assistant Professor, Grade-I in Academic Level-12 and above.
- Retroactively applies to existing faculty in BITS at Lecturer level or above who are in the possession of computer systems for five years.
- A newly appointed Lecturer will also be provided similar resources once at the beginning of his/her appointment.
|FY April 2023 - March 2026 and subsequent 3-year blocks. This policy is to be implemented for all entitlements due to the faculty with effect from block-year April 2023-26. [Any amounts carried forward to FY 2023 as per old policy will need to be expensed / claimed as per terms of the previous policy]. This new policy will apply for all entitlements with effect from April 2023
|Faculty members at the level of Assistant Professor and above from the Date of joining up to the period of employment.
|Rs.3,00,000/- (Rupees Three lakhs) for the entire three-year block period (unutilized PDA of one block would be carried forward to the next block).
|Approving Authority & Conditions
|Operational guidelines for processing PDA of 3 lacs for 3 yr block
PDA entitlement for the first year will be prorated, depending on the year within the block that he/she joins. Any faculty member will be entitled for PDA of 3 lacs on joining during the 1st year of the 3-year block, Rs. 2 lacs if he/she joins in the 2nd year of the 3-year block and 1 lac if he/she joins in the last year of the block.
Carry forward into the next block.
Any unused entitlement in one block can be carried forward to the next block of 3 years, subject to a maximum entitlement amount of Rs. 6 lacs inclusive of the carried forward amount.
Recovery of PDA paid at the time of exit.
A recovery of 2/3rd amount of the current block, if faculty exits in the 1st year of the new block. 1/3rd amount of the current block if the exit is in the 2nd year of the block and no recovery to be effected if the exit is in the last year of the block.
- To conduct research in a University, Industry or Government research laboratory in India or abroad which would enhance the reputation of BITS.
- To undertake well-defined work in industrial concerns and technical departments of Governments, either in India or abroad, to gain practical experience in their respective fields.
- Any other purpose for the academic or related development of the faculty member, as approved by the Vice Chancellor in consultation with concerned campus Director / Dean / Faculty-in charge and Chief People Officer.
- A faculty member is eligible for one-year Sabbatical Leave after the completion of six years of continuous service at Assistant Professor, Grade-I in Academic Level-12 or above, with the Institute, and once every six years of continuous employment thereafter.
- At the time of availing the Sabbatical leave, the faculty member should have at least two years of service before superannuation.
- Service in BITS as a Visiting Faculty or a Visiting Scientist will not be considered for Sabbatical Leave.
- The faculty member should have a satisfactory record of performance in the most recent annual performance review.
- The period of Sabbatical Leave may not exceed one year at a time.
- Sabbatical Leave cannot begin or end in the middle of a semester.
- The sabbatical leave can be broken up in two equal halves of 6 months each. However, in such a case the faculty member should be present at BITS for at least 3 years between the two periods.
- One may combine “vacation leave” of up to 2 months with the sabbatical leave.
- During the period of Sabbatical Leave the faculty member is entitled to full salary and allowances admissible under the normal rules but will not be provided traveling allowance or any other allowance in India or abroad. The faculty will receive 50% of the salary during the Sabbatical Leave, while the balance will be paid in 4 equal installments over the next two years together with interest calculated @ 6% per annum.
- The faculty member would be required to specify the purpose of visit and the nature of work proposed, and how the sabbatical work would contribute to his/her professional development and hence benefit the institute.
- A member of the faculty may not undertake any regular appointment with any other organization in India or abroad during the period of Sabbatical Leave. Any financial benefit received from outside the Institute during sabbatical should be disclosed to the Institute by the Faculty, and prior permission should be taken before receiving such amounts.
- The faculty member interested in proceeding on Sabbatical Leave would be required to intimate his/her intentions in writing to the concerned group leader and controlling officer at least one semester in advance.
- The work load of the faculty member on leave will be distributed among the remaining faculty members. However, in exceptional cases temporary substitutes may be employed.
- While recommending sabbatical leave the Group Leader would be required to certify to Dean/Faculty-in-charge that alternative arrangements have been made for sharing of the academic, research and project activities and other Institutional duties and commitments of the faculty member during his/her absence.
- A faculty member having a sponsored research project at BITS for more than two years may normally avail Sabbatical Leave only after completion of the project.
- No more than 10% of faculty (rounded off to the next higher integer) in a Group may be on Sabbatical Leave at a time.
- The Vice chancellor will be the final approving authority based on recommendations from the concerned campus Director / Dean / Faculty-in-charge and the Chief People Officer.
- He/she avails EOL with a view to enrich his/her background and/or experience that will benefit BITS upon his/her return to BITS,
- EOL will normally be available only after three years of service at BITS,
- The total of such EOL (together with sabbatical leave) is limited to 20% of time spent at BITS,
- One would normally be required to spend 3 years at BITS before he/she can avail similar paid or unpaid leave again.
- The family member of the faculty will normally be provided only minimal access to on-campus medical facility. Medical reimbursement will normally not be available to self and family during this period.
- The faculty member will contribute his/her share of PF as well as that of BITS to his/her PF account.
- the faculty member will be required to pay significantly higher rent for on-campus house if retained during his/her EOL,
- the faculty member will normally have to pay back the amounts received from BITS on account of children’s education, or pay to BITS the equivalent of tuition and other fee waived for education of self, spouse or children at BITS.
Prof. Souri Banerjee
Professor, Department of Physics
Dean Faculty Affairs
Birla Institute of Technology & Science, Pilani,
Hyderabad Campus, Jawahar Nagar
Shamirpeet Mandal, Ranga Reddy Dist.
Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh - 500078