STARS Scheme (Scheme for Transformational and Advanced Research in Sciences)

STARS stands for Scheme for Transformational and Advanced Research in Sciences. STARS scheme initiated for encouraging translational, India-centric research in sciences to be executed and managed by the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. It was launched by Prakash Javedkar, the Union Human resource development on the National Science day. He has consented funds of Rs.250 Crore for the scheme which will be used to subsidize around 500 science projects.


The main objectives of STARS scheme are mentioned below:

  • To finance science subjects that have a direct impact on the progress of the country, around the highly competitive procedures transparently and openly.
  • Advancing inter-disciplinary and translational approach in research for synergy, re-duplication, and greater comprehension of research activities.
  • The primary drive will be taking stock of existing problems and work backwards towards researching a solution.
  • Acquire demonstrable international benchmarks in scientific research.
  • Orient science towards analyzing needs and issues in the country in critical sectors such as health, agriculture, environment, and security.

Thrust Areas

  • Chemical sciences
  • Nanosciences
  • Physical sciences
  • Biological sciences
  • Data science and mathematics
  • Earth sciences

Eligibility Criteria

If you want to apply for the STARS scheme as well as want to get the benefits of the programme, then you must have to follow the following eligibility criteria. The details about the eligibility criteria for the programme are mentioned below:

  • Permanent faculty members from higher educational institutions, the MRHD funded technical institutions and central Universities, and Non-MHRD funded institutions with NIRF ranking with 100 or NAAC 3.26 and above. MHRD funded research institutions will be eligible.
  • Permanent faculty members from any Indian institution can be a co-PI in principle. Although, for the co-IP institutions to receive funds, only MHRD funded higher educational institutions that satisfy the NAAC criteria of 3.26 and better will be eligible.
  • If you are from MHRD funded institutions, you need to register yourself in category 1 or 2 and not register under non-MHRD funded institutions, even if you are satisfying the NAAC criteria.

Procedure of Selection

 IISc is the national coordinator of STARS scheme for the star program to control and execute the plan according to the scheme guidelines. Proposals would be received on the official website of stars which is managed by IIsc.

The procedure is as follows:

  • Submission of the pre-proposal: It will include the executive summary, objectives, and schematics of the planned research. 
  • Blind review: He will perform a blind review of the pre-proposal before selection, the PI and co-PIs must make sure that their identities are not shown anywhere in this part of the submission. 
  • Co-pi addition: If co-PIs are included, before starting a new pre-proposal, you have to add them using the co-PI menu. Co-PI required to accept the invitation email sent to them. It would be best if you remember that change of the PI and co-PIs will not be possible.
  • Invitation for the final proposal: the committee will do the blind review of the pre-proposal. After that, they will be inviting PS for the final proposal.
  • The blind review of the article will be done as per the standard procedures where the identity of the PIs will be shown to the reviewers.

What is the System of Monitoring?

  • The progress of the project will be analyzed after every six months. The project report will be submitted to the portal. IISc would be the single point source for progress data or any query from MRHD regarding stars.
  • All online information will be evaluated by the domain expert committee. The details of the principal investigator will be needed for the presentation in front of the committee for the mid-term evaluation.
  • If the project’s progress report doesn’t provide satisfaction, then the committee may consider recommending the close monitoring and assign domain experts for help. The domain expert committee may also suggest termination of the project in case progress is deemed inadequate or in cases where there is a substantial deviation from the sanctioned goals of the grant. There is the refund of the already sanctioned amount would be the liability of the researcher in case of pre-mature termination.
  • Status of a report on prevailing projects would be presented by IISc in every meeting of the apex committee.

You can lean more on the STARS official website.

Expert Committees

  • An implementation committee is formed to ensure that there is timely execution of STARS.
  • Domain expert committee is formed by the national coordinator for scrutiny, evaluation, and monitoring of the projects. It would be as per the pre-determined thrust areas. End users would also be members to give direction to research.
  • There would be Apex committee with Secretary as chairman, with the director, heads of all the domain expert committee and Secretaries of DST, DBT, CSIR, and two representatives from industry as members. The senior economic advisor would be the ex-officer member of the Apex Committee.
  • Apex committee would provide final approval for the proposals shortlisted by the domain expert committee. They also conducted an annual review of the progress of the scheme.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Under which institute STARS project will be coordinated?

The STARS project will be coordinated by the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.

Q: What is the amount allocated for the STARS scheme and for how many projects?

The Rs 250 crore worth of funds will be allocated for around 500 science projects under the STARS scheme.

Q: What is the process of selection under the STARS scheme?

The selection of the benefitting projects will be completed based on competitions.

Q: When and who launched the STARS scheme?

The Union Human Resource Minister Prakash Javadekar has launched the STARS scheme on National Science Day that is on 28th February.

Q: What are the thrust areas of STARS scheme?

The main Thrust areas of STARS scheme are Chemical sciences, Nan sciences, Physical sciences, Biological sciences, Data science and mathematics, Earth sciences, etc.