National Science Foundation (NSF) Acting Director Cora B. Marrett has signed a new research partnership with T.K. Chandrashekar, Secretary of the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) of India through Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide (GROW). GROW is a coordinated effort that enhances international collaborative research opportunities for NSF Graduate Research Fellows. There are currently GROW agreements between NSF and science agencies in 13 countries.
GROW was announced in December 2012, at the 60th anniversary celebration of the Graduate Research Fellowship Program, NSF's flagship program for graduate students in the science and engineering fields within NSF's mission.
"GROW fosters increased collaboration between Graduate Research Fellows and their peers around the world," said NSF Acting Director Cora Marrett. "Connecting them to leading scientists and research infrastructure outside of the U.S. will help them engage successfully in the global research enterprise."
Under GROW, a streamlined and well-coordinated process has been developed to connect NSF GRFs to a number of strategically selected educational and research institutions around the world.
"The GROW Initiative provides an excellent opportunity to introduce talented American students to the S&T landscape and the long-standing tradition of scientific inquiry in India," said Chandrashekar. "We also hope that the program helps foster long-term interactions between the next generation of innovators and thought leaders from India and the United States and contributes to the prosperity of not only our respective countries but the world at large."
The Fellows, selected through the normal process for the NSF GRF Program and invited to participate in GROW, are hosted by a science agency in a partner country for a period of three to 12 months. While overseas, they receive a living allowance from the host country as they pursue their research in a host institution. They are also eligible to receive an international travel allowance from NSF. This partnership with India adds to existing collaborations with NSF partner agencies in Chile, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Japan, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, South Korea and the Netherlands. It is anticipated that additional partners from other countries will join GROW in the months ahead.
GROW supports NSF's broader commitment to address the internationalization of science and engineering and to provide multiple pathways to engagement with top researchers worldwide. GROW joins other recent NSF efforts such as Science Across Virtual Institutes (SAVI) and Partnerships for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) in providing mechanisms to foster international partnerships and address global challenges.
The GRF program has continued to evolve over six decades, and is now providing opportunities for students to conduct research that is increasingly interdisciplinary. Today's Graduate Research Fellows can also gain experience and mentoring outside the lab--in entrepreneurship, business, industry or government.
More information about NSF international opportunities is available on the Office of International Science and Engineering website.