The Oxford India Centre for Sustainable Development has awarded the prestigious Indira Gandhi Scholarship to Divya Choudhary and Apoorva Kulkarni for pursuing their DPhil research in biochemistry and zoology respectively.

Each year, OICSD awards Indira Gandhi scholarships towards research on sustainable development challenges faced by the Indian subcontinent. Candidates are selected based on their academic merit and the alignment of their work with the Centre’s impact themes such as climate change, energy, cities, healthcare, environmental sustainability and food and water security.

Divya Choudhary‘s research will focus on understanding the evolution of bacteria under antibiotic stress. Her work will address the challenge of increasing antibiotic resistance in micro-organisms across the world. “Being a part of the OICSD community will provide me with a platform to understand the interdisciplinary links between scientific research advancements and better healthcare, thus touching people’s lives,” said Divya, who recently graduated from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, majoring in Chemical Engineering.

Apoorva Kulkarni will study the inclusion of traditional ecological knowledge alongside scientific ecological knowledge for conserving endemic and threatened bird species in the tropical forests of central Western Ghats. Her research aims to contribute towards mainstreaming indigenous communities and livelihoods in biodiversity conservation.

“The Indira Gandhi Graduate scholarship has significantly aided my envisioned research come to reality, by reducing my burden of funding for the next three years of my doctoral study and by lending me the opportunity to focus on making a positive impact on the conservation paradigm in India,” said Apoorva, who previously worked on several research projects related to community-based species conservation, animal movement ecology and bioacoustics studies, among others.

To be considered for the scholarship, applications for graduate study at the University of Oxford must be submitted by the relevant January deadline for a specific course. Please see the Standard scholarship selection terms for more information about the application and selection process.

New scholars: Divya Choudhary (left) and Apoorva Kulkarni (right)

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