Come and join Amrita’s PhD Program in Sustainable Development that is tailored just for you!
Calling for applications from international and Indian candidates for full-time admission to pursue a Ph.D. in Sustainable Development.
APPLY NOW to avail the fully funded E4LIFE International Fellowship - Limited fellowships available!
"In our approach to sustainable development, we should not forget that it is by strengthening the people at the base of the pyramid that the entire edifice of society becomes healthy and strong."
- Dr. Sri. Mata Amritanandamayi Devi, Chancellor, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham
India's socioeconomic growth and development depends upon the sustenance of its rural communities, as 70% of its population are still living in rural villages. These communities form the backbone of the country. Despite the country's overall progress, the rural population has been facing numerous pressing problems which need to be addressed. Some of the challenges they face include: extremely poor access to basic facilities and infrastructure, poverty, illiteracy, malnutrition, waste management, along with the unexpected impact of climate change and extreme weather conditions that result in devastating natural disasters.
At Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham (Amrita), our faculty and students have a mission and a vision to work towards our country’s progress, thereby delivering a sustainable future and creating a global impact. Under the guidance of our Chancellor, Dr. Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (affectionately called as “AMMA”, meaning Mother), a world-renowned humanitarian and meliorist, we have pledged to the motto -“Education for living and Education for life”. Along with academic learning which is important to make a living, education must impart a culture of the heart—a culture based on enduring values, that is essential for life (E4LIFE). AMMA then suggested us to provide opportunities to students from all over the world to spend quality time in the villages that will help them experience, understand and solve the problems faced by the villagers.
To this end, Amrita adopted 100+ villages and got committed to use applied research as the foundation of socio economic progress and sustainability. Further, to make this accessible to the international academic community, the Live-in-Labs®, Amrita’s flagship program was launched in 2013. The Live-in-Labs® is a credit-based program which adopts a multidisciplinary theory–into–practice approach.
Related Links: Amrita Live-in-Labs®
Our Chancellor’s exemplary vision and untainted intent of care for people in real need, has laid the foundation for the Live-in-Labs programme. It is offered as an elective in the Curriculum of Amrita Students from all departments and campuses. Amrita students work on their village project for 1,5 year (3 continuous semesters). International students have the possibility to join those projects, for a duration of 1 up to 6 months depending on their availability, and work with them towards developing sustainable solutions for the adopted villages. For international students it is an unique opportunity to :
We work on the following thematic areas to make these villages self-reliant:
A detailed study of each of these areas in every community gives rise to a combination of problem statements intertwined with dynamic challenges such as the psychosocial beliefs, language barriers, cognitive behaviour, social issues prevalent based on caste, gender, politics etc. that are very unique to every community. These problem statements and challenges are being analysed meticulously by interdisciplinary teams of students and expert researchers in order to address them.
International students can joint a team of Amrita students already working on a project in a village. Each project team addresses a specific challenge in one of the adopted village. Each team is mentored by an Amrita faculty, who will act as project guide for the international students as well.
Depending on the projects there will be different deliverables expected from the students. At the minimum, students have to submit a project report and a final presentation. This is also a mandatory Immigration requirement (see Visa and Immigration requirement part below). Since 2014 Live-in-Labs projects have been implemented in all thematic areas. You can find some of them here: https://www.amrita.edu/international/live-in-labs/projects
The programme is open for international participants all year long. However, it is preferable to start in June and December, which are the times when project teams initiate the work in villages. Joining at other time is possible but students will have to catch up with sometime high amounts of work.
Live-in-Labs is open to international students at Bachelor and Master Level, from all academic background. All students will undergo an interview process for validating their application.
Please follow the following process for application
Step 1: Register with us online here
Step 2: Email us the following documents (as attachments) in English
It is theoretically possible to transfer credits of your Live-in-Labs project back to your home university. However, since India follows a different type of credit system than the US and European Universities, the feasibility has to be assessed on a case-by-case basis. There is no guarantee.
If you require credit transfer, we recommend you first inform your home university’s international office so they can initiate discussions with our Administration and see if this is feasible.
Please note that students can only earn credits for their project work if they come on a Student or Research visa (see below for Visa and immigration requirements).
The total cost of the program is 1000$/months. However, student from universities with which Amrita has already signed a partnership agreement can avail a scholarship. In that case 70% of the costs will be waived, and participants will have to pay only for their essential course materials, food accommodation and transportation.
Participants have to pay $315 per month for essential course materials, food, accommodation. The fee is calculated on a monthly basis (not weekly basis) and every month that is started is to be paid fully. Payment has to be made at the beginning of the project.
Project related transportation costs have to be covered by participants separately. On average they account for approximately $100 to & $200 for the whole duration of the project (Rs 7,000 - 12,000 ) depending on the location of the rural community and frequency of travels. That cost can be paid at the end of the project.