Who can submit a proposal?

Anyone holding a faculty position at any research and educational institution can submit a proposal for organizing a program at the ICTS. A typical proposal for organizing a program is expected to have two or more organizers. All successful program proposals have to be organized in the ICTS campus in Hesaraghatta, Bangalore, India.

What are the possible research areas of a program?
Program proposals can be submitted in any of the traditional areas of the physical and mathematical sciences, as well as in overlapping areas, which include the interface between cosmology, particle physics and string theory; new emergent areas of mathematics with applications to statistical physics, string theory, biology, finance and so on; computational science; complex systems like climate, fluids etc.

The Centre will also support activities that contribute to raising the level of scientific knowledge among Indian university students and faculty. Some of the high level activities will be preceded by pre-schools or instructional workshops, to enable young participants to make the best use of the programs. The aim of these type of activities is to contribute to human resource development in the basic sciences.

Where does one submit a proposal?
Proposals for organizing programs can be submitted on the ICTS website by following the link “ORGANIZE A PROGRAM”.

How are successful program proposals selected?
All program proposals are scrutinized by a Program Committee of the ICTS. It consists of acknowledged leaders in different areas of science. A list of the current members of the Program Committee can be found here. Successful program proposals must have a positive recommendation from this Committee.  

What does the Program Committee look for in a proposal?
To receive a positive recommendation from the Program Committee, a program proposal must have the following:

1. A description of the theme and objectives, explaining the scientific case and its timeliness and a list of specific topics to be covered in the program.
2. Duration of the program and its justification in terms of expected research benefits and human resource development. Proposals with a strong human resource development component are encouraged.
3. A list of possible speakers and targeted participants (preferably after consultations with a few of them). ICTS program committee looks for quality participants and researchers in this list. It also tends to encourage strong participation by students.
4. Any other relevant information. 

The Centre will allocate budgetary support as per its norms and the needs of the proposed program. To do this, we will need to know the expected number of participants from outside Bangalore and from within Bangalore, expected number of single and sharing rooms required and approximate travel assistance expected. Please note that there are only limited funds available for travel assistance, especially foreign travel.

What should be the duration of a program?
1. Full length programs usually run for 6-12 weeks or longer. Example of a recent full length program is:

a) Summer Research Program on Dynamics of Complex Systems 

2. Short duration programs, covering important developments in an area that requires a focused response, run for 2 weeks or more, but less than 6 weeks. A scientific case for the appropriateness of the duration needs to be made in the proposal. Examples of short duration programs are:

(a) Numerical Relativity
(b) Data Assimilation Research Program
(c) Winter School on Stochastic Analysis and Control of Fluid Flow      
(d) CP Violation in Elementary Particles and Composite Systems
3. Mini programs cover exciting new developments which require a timely response. These are usually of more than 1 but less than 2 weeks duration. Proposals for even shorter duration programs may also be submitted. In all these cases, however, a strong scientific justification has to be provided for the duration and timeliness of the proposed program and its benefits to the scientific community. Examples of mini programs are:

(a) Summer School on Gravitational-Wave Astronomy
(b) Bangalore School On Statistical Physics - VII
(c) School on Current Frontiers in Condensed Matter Research 
(d) Second Bangalore School on Population Genetics and Evolution     
(e) Modern Finance and Macroeconomics: A Multidisciplinary Approach
(f)  Winter School on Quantitative Systems Biology 2015
(g) Extragalactic Relativistic Jets: Cause and Effect
(h) US-India Advanced Studies Institute on Thermalization: From Glasses to Black Holes
(i)  The 8th Asian Winter School on Strings, Particles and Cosmology

A short discussion meeting in which recent results in the topics which are planned to be covered in the program can be included as a part of a full length (6-12 weeks) or short duration (2-4 weeks) program proposal.

4. Discussion meetings are gatherings around a leading lecturer on a theme around his/her work or a focussed discussion of a recent exciting development in a given field by the relevant researchers. These meetings are usually a few days to a week long. Examples of a few recent discussion meetings are:

(a) Games, Epidemics and Behavior
(b) Information processing in biological systems
(c) AEI-ICTS joint workshop on gravitational-wave astronomy
(d) Scattering without Space Time

ICTS also organizes Named lecture series like Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar lecture series (in physical sciences), Srinivasa Ramanujan lecture series (in mathematical sciences) and Alan Turing lecture series (in biology, computer science, engineering and related areas). Eminent academicians deliver these lectures on important new developments in their areas of specialty. The first lecture in any series is aimed at a general scientific audience, while the remaining (2-3 lectures) are aimed at specialists. Usually a discussion meeting is organized around the theme of the lecture series.

Examples of some recent named lecture series are:

Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar lecture series
Random Matrix Theory and the dynamics of nonequilibrium interfaces
The Nonlinear Physics of Disordered Systems: From Amorphous Solids to Complex Flows

Srinivasa Ramanujan lecture series
Understanding non-equilibrium: some recent advances and a challenge for the future
Automorphic forms and Galois representations

Alan Turing lecture series
Complexity, Phase Transitions, and Inference
Alan Turing Lectures in Biology

5. Special programs are rare and are held when an exciting opportunity presents itself. These programs may run for several months. Examples of special programs are:

(a) Mathematics of Planet Earth 2013 (MPE 2013)       
(b) Einstein lecture series

What is not covered by the ICTS mandate?

ICTS is not a conference funding agency. Proposals for organizing conferences and workshops, as well as requests for partial funding of these, are outside the mandate of ICTS. All programs supported by ICTS must be organized entirely as ICTS programs, including preparation of a webpage for the program on the ICTS website, uploading instructional material generated by the program on the webpage, etc.

For more information please contact: program [at] icts . res . in