ASEAN-India Research Training Fellowship (AI-RTF)

India has been the dialogue partner for ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) since 1992. In 2012, on the occasion of the 20th anniversary as a dialogue partner, India-ASEAN celebrated a commemorative Summit and declared the enhancement of its relations to a strategic level.

ASEAN-India S&T Collaboration started formally in 1996 with the establishment of ASEAN India S&T working Group (AIWGST). Initially, the S&T activities were supported through ASEAN India Fund (AIF) of the Government of India. The Government of India established a dedicated fund, namely ASEAN India S&T Development Fund (AISTDF), in 2008 to support projects and associated project development activities. The AISTDF is an equivalent amount of 5 Million USD in INR and is jointly contributed by the Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Ministry of External Affairs (MEA). The Department of Science & Technology is the nodal Department for the execution and implementation of ASEAN-India S&T Cooperation program from the Indian side.

The Plan of Action of the ASEAN-INDIA PARTNERSHIP FOR PEACE, PROGRESS AND SHARED PROSPERITY (2021-2025) implements the goals and objectives of the ASEAN-India Partnership for Peace, Progress and Shared Prosperity and the Vision Statements of Leaders of ASEAN and India. Through the implementation of this Plan of Action, ASEAN and India will work towards supporting the ASEAN Community building and integration process for a politically cohesive, economically integrated, socially responsible, and truly people-oriented, people-centered, and rules-based ASEAN, narrowing the development gap, and enhancing ASEAN Connectivity. Both sides will also further promote cooperation in addressing common and emerging challenges and enhance coordination in other international forums on issues of common concern to contribute to overall peace, stability, and prosperity.

The main objectives of ASEAN-India Science, Technology, and Innovation cooperation are based on the following principles-

  1. Encourage and promote cooperation in science, technology, and innovation, including joint research activity and development on cross-sectoral areas such as health, communicable and emerging infectious diseases, environmental management, climate change adaptation and mitigation measures, agricultural technologies, alternative energy, biodiversity, food processing, advanced materials for the development of value-added products, and space technology and applications;
  2. Encourage and promote cooperation in biotechnology, including capacity building and joint research and development for mutual benefit;
  3. Undertake activities and develop program/projects under the ASEAN-India Science and Technology Development Fund;

In order to support and facilitate mobility among young talented researchers of ASEAN Member States (namely Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam), India and ASEAN instituted the scheme ASEAN-India Research Training Fellowship (AIRTF) Scheme for ASEAN young researchers to work at any of the Indian research/academic Institutions.


The AIRTF scheme is a fellowship scheme with the following objectives:

  • To promote mobility of scientists and researchers from the ASEAN-Member Countries to India and provide them an opportunity to work at Indian R&D/academic institutions to upgrade their research skills and expertise.
  • To facilitate the exchange of information and contacts between the scientists and researchers of India and ASEAN Countries and create a network for building research collaborations.

‍‍As a spin-off, the Fellowship awardees may also have the opportunity to get co-supervisors from India for their research projects for Ph.D. or Masters degree on their return to their home countries.

Number of fellowships:

Fifty (50) fellowships per year shall be awarded to young scientists and researchers from ASEAN-Member States to get affiliated with Indian academic and R&D institutions.

Duration of fellowships:

The duration of the Fellowship will be for a period of two to six months. No request for extension or reduction in the duration period shall be entertained after the award of the fellowship.

Management & execution:

ASEAN-India Research Training Fellowship (AI-RTF) program shall be managed and coordinated by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI), New Delhi.

Areas in which fellowships are available

The area/topic of research for av