The deadline for applications for the Sahapedia-UNESCO Fellowship programme — a pioneering project to advance research into Indian art, culture, tradition, and heritage, and their systematic documentation — has been extended to July 30th.
Sahapedia, the open encyclopaedic resource on Indian arts, which has instituted the fellowship with the support of UNESCO, said the last date for applications has been extended from July 15th to July 30th in view of requests from a large number of potential applicants for more time to submit their proposals.
A total of 100 fellowships are available in two variants – the Sahapedia Project Fellowship (SPF) and the Sahapedia Research Fellowship (SRF), that give the participants the option of joining in either at the level of primary documentation or in the content curation process. Sahapedia has already received three times the number of applications.
“We are greatly encouraged by the quality of project proposals we have received so far,” said Sudha Gopalakrishnan, the Executive Director of Sahapedia. “They represent varied interests and diverse areas of studies, which is what we have been aiming for.”
The Fellowships, available to post-doctoral scholars, doctoral candidates, post-graduates, and graduates (including those students due to graduate in the summer of 2017), are expected to generate critically researched, engaging content in multimedia formats that will be hosted on the Sahapedia website for wider public access.
Applicants selected as Sahapedia Project Fellows will be granted an award of Rs. 40,000, and Sahapedia Research Fellows will be offered an award of Rs. 15,000. The SPF project is expected to be completed in 12 weeks, and the SRF assignment in 8 weeks.
Sahapedia expects to process the applications and conduct interviews by August and September. It hopes to disburse awards and have the projects running by October.
“Since this is the first edition of the programme, we have extended the deadline to ensure that we don’t lose out on projects with potential,” said Vaibhav Chauhan, Director at Sahapedia. “We are particularly keen that researchers from different regions of India, and especially smaller towns, engage with culture and heritage issues and bring lesser known traditions, practices and art forms to the spotlight through their work.”
The Sahapedia – UNESCO Fellowships, announced in June, are a step forward in realizing the goals of the UNESCO 2003 Convention that emphasizes the “importance of the intangible cultural heritage as a mainspring of cultural diversity and a guarantee of sustainable development”. UNESCO expects the initiative to help widen the network of professionals keen to work in the culture and heritage sector and help them engage with lesser known practices, oral histories, and community knowledge; the research work could potentially open up new areas to explore.
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