I am Ph.D. advisor to X, a rising 5th-year Ph.D. student in pure mathematics at a mid-tier US research university. X and I are trying to prepare for his upcoming job search.

In my opinion X is promising, talented, and hard-working, and he has not quite realized his potential yet. If he were to go on the US postdoctoral job market this year, I would estimate his chances to be low. Staying for a sixth year is a theoretical possibility, but my department is faced with budget cuts and X would probably have to finance his own studies.

It occurs to me that he might apply for postdocs (and, eventually, tenure-track positions) in his native India. He would really like to pursue a research career, and would likely be willing to accept compromises such as a low salary (by US standards).

An internet search reveals particular institutes to which one can apply, as well as postdoctoral fellowships -- but I was unable to find any general overview of the Indian job market geared towards applicants overseas.

Is there an approach to finding a mathematics job in India, better than googling and applying for individual opportunities? And is it any easier to find a job there than it is in the US (for an Indian citizen who has studied in the US)?

  • 1
    I don't know too much about India, but TIFR and the IISERs are the first places that come to mind for math, and I would think the best thing to do would be to contact potential mentors in India.
    – Kimball
    Jul 23, 2018 at 5:00
  • Regarding the last question, I know a few Indian citizens who got their PhDs in the US, tried unsuccessfully to get jobs in the US, but did get jobs in India. So as of a few years ago, yes, anecdotally.
    – Kimball
    Jul 23, 2018 at 5:03
  • 1
    Perhaps your question is a bit too narrow. It is a big world, even if you limit it to the English-speaking world. Maybe at least a preliminary search elsewhere would aid your candidate.
    – Buffy
    Sep 23, 2018 at 13:34
  • 2
    To add to Buffy's point, wouldn't expanding his postdoc search to Europe be a more obvious move? There are plenty of postdoctoral fellowships in continental Europe (e.g. Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowships), at universities with much stronger name recognition in the wider academic community than those your student would be applying to in India. Nov 23, 2018 at 10:42
  • My department (in Malaysia) is hiring. If X is still on the market, he might be a good fit. My contact info is on my website: dongcl.wixsite.com/darrenong
    – Darren Ong
    Mar 27, 2019 at 4:17

1 Answer 1


First of all, I am not an Indian, please take my words as a grain of salts. I'll provide what I know.

University Grants Commission (UGC)

is a statutory body set up by the Indian Union government in accordance to the UGC Act 1956[1] under Ministry of Human Resource Development, and is charged with coordination, determination and maintenance of standards of higher education.

As far as I know, they are in charge of almost all of the high level education matters in India.

I did find one of their web pages Scholarships and Fellowships which lists many scholarships and fellowships in India, including UGC scheme for post-doctoral Fellowships (pdfs) (To be named D. S. Kothari Fellowships), POST DOCTORAL FELLOWSHIP TO WOMEN CANDIDATES (I don't know if your student is a woman or not), etc.

Hope this helps.

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