Institute for Social and Economic Change

Established in 1972 by Professor V K R V Rao, ISEC is an All-India Institute for Interdisciplinary Research and Training in the Social Sciences

About PhD Programme – isec

About PhD Programme

PHD Programme

About ISEC

The Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC), a premier all-India autonomous interdisciplinary research and training Institute in the field of Social Sciences in India, was established by Dr. V.K.R.V. Rao in 1972. The institute has completed 50 glorious years and celebrated its Golden Jubilee in 2022. Over the years, ISEC has carved a place of pride in the Social Science Research map of India through the research contributions of the distinguished faculty and with the guidance of eminent members of the Board of Governors. Today, ISEC is one of the largest social science research institutes functioning with the funding support of Department of Higher Education, Government of Karnataka, Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), and Government of India. The main objective of Ph.D. programme is to provide high-quality academic training to Ph.D. Scholars to prepare them as independent researchers and teachers in the field of social sciences. The hallmark of our Ph.D. Programme is its Bi-annual Seminars and Doctoral Committees comprising of experts in the respective domain of students’ research. Doctoral Committee (DC) meets periodically and provides inputs to the Ph.D. Scholars towards improvement of Ph.D. dissertation besides monitoring the progress of their thesis work. After obtaining the inputs from DC members, every Ph.D. Scholar is mandated to make presentation in the Bi-annual Seminars of the Institute in the months of June and December. Further two panel experts provide inputs on handouts and presentation of the students in the Biannual Seminar. ISEC has trained about 273 scholars for Ph.D., most of whom are placed in highly reputed Institutes / Universities / Government and International Organisations. Currently 94 students are pursuing Ph D in different centres. ISEC is presently affiliated with the Universities of Mysore and Bangalore for the award of Ph.D. degree.


ISEC is located amidst a lush green landscape of 16 hectares at Nagarabhavi, Bengaluru, adjoining campuses of Bangalore University and National Law School of India University. The Institute’s campus preserves a rich variety of flora and fauna. ISEC campus is situated 12 kms away from Central Railway and Central Bus station with a very good network of buses and 42 kms away from Kempegowda International Airport. To find the location of the ISEC campus, visit google map.


The Institute is organized into nine academic research centres which are inter-disciplinary in nature viz., : (a) Agricultural Development and Rural Transformation Centre (ADRTC), (b) Centre for Decentralization and Development (CDD), (c) Centre for Ecological Economics and Natural Resources (CEENR), (d)Centre for Economic Studies and Policy (CESP), (e) Centre for Human Resource Development (CHRD), (f) Centre for Political Institutions, Governance and Development (CPIGD), (g) Centre for Research in Urban Affairs (CRUA), (h) Centre for Study of Social Change and Development (CSSCD) and (i) Population Research Centre (PRC). The faculty members of these centres supervise the Ph.D. Scholars pursuing research in individual disciplines.



The Institute has well-equipped Students hostels separately for boys and girls. Full-time Ph.D. Scholars are provided hostel accommodation at a reasonable rate.


Dr. V.K.R.V. Rao Library is one of India's leading research libraries in social sciences which has about 1.5 lakh collections. The library subscribes to about 200 academic international and national journals, out of which 50 journals are accessible online. Library also subscribes to online databases viz., EconLit full text, JSTOR, CMIE-Prowess,, EPWRFITS, etc. Integrated library management software LIBSYS is used for housekeeping operations and OPAC. Organizations such as UNDP, World Bank, UN and several other international organizations have recognized it as a Depository Library. Dr. V.K.R.V. Rao Social Science Digital library provides access to more than 12000 rare documents to the social science research community.

Computer Lab

The Institute has a computer laboratory with high speed internet and Wi-Fi connectivity for the benefit of Ph.D. Scholars.

Study Room

The Study Room with a seating capacity for 35 scholars pursuing Ph.D. and post-doctoral work at ISEC is also provided with WiFi facilities.

PhD Programmes

The Ph.D Programme begins with the coursework which is for 10 months consisting of Courses A and B. During the coursework period, the scholars are provided rigorous training in inter-disciplinary research in social sciences. The scholars must pass the Ph.D. course work examination to continue in the Ph.D. Programme.

ISEC offers two categories of Ph.D. Programme – (a) Full Time and (b) Part Time

Full Time

Full time scholars are regular students of the Institute and they are required to be in the Institute. Attending the coursework is mandatory. The candidate must not be more than 40 years of age on the last date of application. There shall be an age relaxation of 5 years for SC/ST candidates and persons with benchmark disability.

Part Time (Non-Residential)

Part time scholars are those who are in service and pursuing Ph.D. on a part-time basis. There is no age restriction. The Part time scholars can attend the classes even though attendance is not compulsory. Eligibility requirements and selection criteria are similar to both for full-time and part time Ph.D. scholars.


After Enrollment for the Ph.D. Programme, the Academic Section of the Institute facilitates the scholars to obtain registration from one of the affiliated Universities. While provisional registration is done during the coursework period, final registration is done only on successful completion of the coursework and review of Research Proposal by the Doctoral Committee and the Board of Studies of the respective universities. The scholars are required to comply and meet all the requirements as per the Rules of the University from time to time with regard to enrollment/registration, submission of progress report.

Contact Details

For More Information, send e-mail to:  or contact over telephone (080) 23217013.

Copyright © 2023 ISEC. Design & Developed By Maxtra Technologies

Total Visitors: 54262