Skip to main content

Doctoral Program in Art, Design and Transdisciplinary Studies – PhD


The goal of doctoral program at Srishti is to develop competency in high-quality and rigorous research in art, design and transdisciplinary studies with the view of making original contributions to these disciplines. The program encompasses a range of scholarly research, design, and creative production. It aims to build capacities for design, design education, art and art education that address problems and opportunities of contemporary society and are cognizant of India’s rich tangible and intangible heritage.

View our current PhD Scholars >>


Design, Art, and the Humanities: Research in this area focuses on historical and contemporary knowledge of design and art, theoretical and philosophical considerations including aesthetic and formal theories, cultural studies relevant to any field of art and design, or criticism and writing of design /art.

Creativity and Cognition in Learning: Research in this area would add to art and design pedagogy, as well as art, design, and methodologies of communication in museums. It would contribute to the application of design thinking to education and pedagogical innovations in education in art, design, and creative practices.

Culture, Heritage, and Sustainable Development: Research in this area involves contributions to knowledge and methods of design that are responsive to and compatible with a place, local culture, and its heritage. This includes research on crafts and traditional practices, urban and rural environments, heritage conservation and management.

Technology and Innovation: Research in this area involves application of design to the frontiers of science and technology and to the application of innovations in science and technology to furthering design forms and knowledge. This area would include research from health and wellness, to nanotechnology, design of industrial products, and interactive and digital media.

Experimental and Creative Practices: This field aims for inquiry and research-based, theoretically informed, artistic and creative productions. The goal is to contextualize creative work and support reflection on practice.

Post Development Studies offers a nuanced understanding of development by shifting the focus from development politics to ecology and economy, specifically to issues related to land, labour and livelihoods. For more info, Click here >>

Critical Design Discourse examines the limits of current design paradigms through multiple lenses: arts practices, narrative inquiry, living systems approach, cultural differences and ethics. For more info, Click here >>

Reimagining Transitions considers the large scale macro shifts that are happening across natural ecosystems as well as human societies and the interplay between the two. For more info, Click here >>

Academic Publications and Events

PhD scholars have several opportunities at Srishti to publish, participate in critical discussions and debates for advancing research and scholarship. There are several events and forums that bring together artists, designers and scholars to engage in a dialogue to generate new ideas, concepts and approaches.

Unbound: A Journal of Discourse and Creative Practices is published through the electronic medium, 3 times a year. Unbound aims to break out of traditional disciplinary territories and boundaries considered self-evident markers of knowledge, by giving expression to ideas and everyday practices that operate simultaneously on contiguous, and often, overlapping domains. The journal can be accessed here.

Conference on Research in Art, Design and Culture, which is an annual event, is held in the third week of December. With a new theme every year, the conference attracts scholars, artists, and designers from all over the world. Selected contributions to the conference are normally published as an edited volume with reputed publishers.  For information on the Conference click here

Graduate Symposium, which is held once a year in the third week of July, offers a public forum for doctoral scholars to present their ongoing research and receive feedback from peers and experts in the field. For information on Symposium click here

Srishti Colloquium, a fortnightly forum, mainly for Srishti faculty to share their work, ongoing research and work in progress. From time to time Srishti Colloquium also hosts educators, artists, designers and researchers from outside Srishti. For information on Colloquium click here


The doctoral program normally takes 3-5 years to complete and involves three different stages after the admission into the program.

Course Work: In the first four semesters of their program, doctoral students are required to complete 8-18 credits worth of course work that includes a course on research methodology and research ethics. Based on student preparedness, the research committee can recommend additional course work beyond the mandatory 8-18 credits.

Proposal and Doctoral Advisory Committee (DAC): By the end of the second semester of the program, students choose a PhD supervisor among the certified faculty and form a DAC with 2 additional members. The supervisor and the DAC members guide the student in developing a research proposal that must be formally defended and approved.

Research and Thesis: After the formal approval of the PhD proposal students engage in research / practice working closely with their supervisor and DAC. At the end of the research period the output of research undergoes rigorous examination by an internal committee and external examiners. Students who successfully fulfilled requirements will be awarded PhD degree.



To be eligible to apply for admission to the PhD Program, applicants must have at least one of the following qualifications:

    1. Indian Students:
      1. A Master’s degree in art or design or a related discipline from a recognized University in India or abroad.
      2. A five year professional Bachelor’s degree
    1. International Students:
      1. A Master’s degree in art or design or a related discipline from a reputed University.
      2. A score of at least 6.5 in IELTS or equivalent qualifying test for English language.
      3. Proven writing skills.

NOTE: Students who were admitted to Integrated Postgraduate-Doctoral Program and who qualify will be admitted directly to PhD program upon successful presentation of PhD proposal.

Entrance Assessment:

Prospective students who fulfill the minimum eligibility requirements and have demonstrated evidence of art and design practice or engagement with a discourse related to any discipline of art and design will be invited to a 2-step entrance assessment.

Step 1: Students will be invited to undergo a written entrance assessment.

NOTE: Students who have cleared any PhD entrance exam recognized by UGC, or National Level tests like UGC/CSIR NET, DBT (JRF), ICMR, DST (INSPIRE), etc. or any other University’s PhD or equivalent entrance test will directly go to Step 2.

Step 2: All students who have successfully completed Step 1 of entrance assessment will be invited to appear for a personal interview before an Admissions Committee.

NOTE: Qualifying students who are entering PhD through Integrated Postgraduate-Doctoral Program need NOT go through the entrance assessment for PhD.


Interested candidates would send in an application along with required documents to the Chair of the PhD program.

The documentation required consists of -

    1. Srishti’s application form and supporting documents as listed within the application form.
    2. Statement of purpose
    3. A writing sample
    4. A portfolio (optional)
    5. Optional: Scores from any PhD entrance exam recognized by UGC, or National Level tests like UGC/CSIR NET, DBT (JRF), ICMR, DST (INSPIRE), etc. or any other University’s PhD or equivalent entrance test.

Selection Protocols 2020 - Doctoral Program (PhD)

Fee Schedule 2020 for the Doctoral Program (PhD)


For Further information contact

Apply Offline

Application Forms 2020-21 (Downloadable)