Professor Sir Steve Smith meeting Professor VS Ramamurthy, Director of NIAS

College of Humanities to develop PHDs with the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bangalore

The College of Humanities has been awarded two UK India Education Research Initiative grants to develop split site PhDs, in Archaeology and Drama, with the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Bangalore, India.

NIAS, a prestigious research-led institution, was founded by JRD Tata in 1988 with a specific remit to conduct advanced multidisciplinary research. NIAS aims to integrate the findings of scholarship in the natural and social sciences as well as technology, the humanities and arts through research on the complex issues that face Indian and global society, and to disseminate the conclusions of such research through appropriate publications and courses, as well as through dialogues with leaders and the public.

Nick Kaye, Dean of the College of Humanities said 'This simultaneous award to Archaeology and Drama enabling us to appoint over 20 PhD students over three years to be jointly supervised with colleagues at the NIAS is a terrific achievement. I am sure that our exchanges with staff and researchers over this period will provide a tremendous opportunity to deepen and further develop our research collaboration with one of India's foremost institutes for the Humanities.'  

Exeter Archaeology’s Dr Gill Juleff has a long-standing relationship with NIAS via Professor S Ranganathan and Dr Sharada Srinivasan, with whom she co-directed a three-year UKIERI 1 project entitled “Pioneering Metallurgy; the origins of steel-making in the southern Indian sub-continent”. The project culminated in an International Project Dissemination seminar in November 2011, where 70 participants from several different countries gathered at NIAS to learn more about the findings of the project and share their own research.

The Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Steve Smith said, ‘I am delighted that the College of Humanities has received funding from UKIERI 2 to develop joint PhDs in Archaeology and Drama with the National Institute of Advanced Studies. NIAS and Exeter have a longstanding relationship in Archaeology, supported by a UKIERI 1 grant, and this new award will enable the two institutions to continue to innovate together. The interdisciplinarity of NIAS’s research, combined with the breadth of expertise in the College of Humanities, will create exciting synergies from which new doctoral students will undoubtedly benefit.’

For more information on NIAS visit

Date: 7 December 2011

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