Frequently Asked Questions
The LAMP Fellowship is one of the only initiatives of its kind in the country. We recognise the decision to participate in the Fellowship is an important one for you and that you might have some questions that arise in the process. We hope to provide answers to some of those questions and clarify any doubts you may have regarding the nature of your role and the scope of this prestigious Fellowship.
About the Fellowship
1. What is the exact duration of the Fellowship?
2. I am looking for an internship. Is the LAMP Fellowship suitable for me?
3. As a LAMP Fellow can I pursue any other professional or academic engagement?
4. What is the average number of working hours I need to put in?
5. I am not well-versed with the legal or political system in India. Will I be provided with any training?
6. What opportunities are available to me after the Fellowship?
7. What are the application dates for the fellowship?
8. What is the selection process?
9. What are the criteria for selection of LAMP Fellows?
10. I am not an Indian citizen, but I hold a PIO/OCI card. Am I eligible for the LAMP Fellowship?
11. Is work experience desirable to be a LAMP Fellow?
12. Are candidates with Master's degrees preferred?
13. I am graduating in the summer. Am I eligible to be a LAMP Fellow?
Roles and Responsibilities of the LAMP Fellow
14. What is the nature of tasks I am expected to perform as a LAMP Fellow?
15. What work will I be engaged in when the Parliament is not in session?
Working with the Member of Parliament (MP)
16. Which MP will I be working with?
17. Given that I do not know the MP I will be working with, how can I be most effective as a LAMP Fellow?
18. When will I begin working with the MP?
19. Will I receive a stipend during the Fellowship?
20. Will I have office space to work out of?
21. Will I have access to any office equipment I would need to complete my tasks?
22. Will I be required to travel for work?
23. What procedure am I required to follow to apply for leave?
24. Who will I report to about the tasks I have completed?
25. May I approach PRS for any questions or challenges I face while undertaking a given task?
26. I am an outstation candidate. Will any facilities for accommodation be provided to me under this Fellowship?
About the Fellowship
Q 1. What is the exact duration of the fellowship?
A. The Fellowship starts from the middle of June every year and concludes in the following April - May (subject to the Parliamentary calendar).
Q 2.I am looking for an internship. Is the LAMP Fellowship suitable for me?
A. The LAMP Fellowship is not an internship. In their work with MPs, LAMP Fellows work as full-time professionals. From time to time, short-term internship opportunities with PRS are available. Such opportunities will be announced on www.prsindia.org.
Q 3. As a LAMP Fellow can I pursue any other professional or academic engagement?
A. LAMP Fellows are expected to commit to a full-time engagement with the Fellowship. The Fellows cannot pursue any additional academic or professional assignments during their engagement as a LAMP Fellow.
Q 4. What is the average number of working hours I need to put in?
A. The role of a LAMP Fellow requires full-time commitment. The periods when Parliament is in session will be the busiest time of the year for anyone working with Parliamentarians, as it is for all of us at PRS.
MPs are usually in Parliament anytime between 10am and 6pm. MPs typically meet with their Fellows and assign work either before they go to Parliament or after they return. During the session LAMP Fellows may have to brief their MPs on short notice on any matter.
Hence, during session the workload will be the maximum and the LAMP Fellow will need to be open to flexible working hours. The work of each LAMP Fellow will therefore differ greatly, depending on the work and requirements of their respective MPs.
Q 5. I am not well-versed with the legal or political system in India. Will I be provided with any training?
A. PRS conducts intensive training, where the LAMP Fellows will be familiarised with basic parliamentary and legal frameworks, parliamentary procedures, information sources and research tools. Attendance is mandatory for the entire training period. LAMP Fellows will be continually provided with training during their engagement with the Fellowship.
Q 6. What opportunities are available to me after the Fellowship?
A. Some LAMP Fellows have pursued advanced degrees in institutions like ISB, XLRI, Yale University, Columbia University, Oxford and LSE. Some have continued to work with MPs and political parties. Others have joined either policy institutions like the World Bank, Foreign Embassies, CPR and Pratham or choosen a career in the corporate sector including consulting, investment banking and ecommerce. Few have joined civil service as IAS and IPS officers.
Q 7. What are the application dates for the Fellowship?
A. Applications for LAMP Fellowship 2017-18 are now open. Last date for submission of applications is February 12, 2017.
Q 8. What is the selection process?
A. The LAMP Fellowship involves a highly competitive selection process to enable brilliant, motivated young individuals across the country to be part of the Fellowship. Only Indian citizens are eligible for the LAMP Fellowship.
Applications to the Fellowship are invited through an online application portal only. The online application form requires details of the candidate's academic background and relevant work experience. In addition, candidates are required to submit a statement of intent and a short essay on a policy or legislative issue.
The application process is followed by an interview of shortlisted candidates. Interview will be either in person or telephonic. Shortlisted candidates will be asked to furnish references. Note than any attempt to influence the selection process could lead to the disqualification of the candidate.
Q 9. What are the criteria for selection of LAMP Fellows?
A. Candidates from all academic backgrounds are welcome to apply. Candidates must have at least a Bachelor’s degree in any academic discipline and should be 25 years of age or below i.e. born on or after January 1, 1992.
Previous LAMP Fellows come from diverse academic backgrounds with bachelor or master’s degrees in engineering, law, economics, sciences, liberal arts, and commerce.
Q 10. I am not an Indian citizen, but I hold a PIO/OCI card. Am I eligible for the LAMP Fellowship?
A. The Fellowship is open to Indian citizens only. "Indian citizen" implies someone holding an Indian passport or eligible to hold one. Individuals holding PIO/OCI cards are not eligible for the LAMP Fellowship.
Q 11. Is work experience desirable to be a LAMP Fellow?
A. Work experience is not an essential criteria to become a LAMP Fellow. However, due to the nature of work a LAMP Fellow undertakes, previous work experience and exposure to a professional work environment might equip LAMP Fellows better to work more effectively with an MP.
Q 12. Are candidates with Master's degrees preferred?
A. The only essential criteria is that candidates must have a Bachelor's degree in any academic discipline. Candidates with Master's degrees are welcome to apply, but will not have an advantage over other candidates. Similarly, the LAMP Fellowship does not give preference to any particular academic discipline.
Q 13. I am graduating in the summer. Am I eligible to be a LAMP Fellow?
A. Candidates are required to have at least a Bachelor's degree to be eligible for the LAMP Fellowship. This means that candidates must have finished their Bachelor's degree examination before the Fellowship begins i.e. by end May 2017.
Roles and Responsibilities of the LAMP Fellow
Q 14. What is the nature of tasks I am expected to perform as a LAMP Fellow?
A. The primary role of a LAMP Fellow is to work closely with their MP, providing individualised research support for the entire duration of the Fellowship. This entails providing research inputs to help them fulfill their parliamentary duties such as asking questions, assessing the performance of ministries, raising matters of public importance, participating in various legislative and policy debates and even drafting private members' Bills.
Q 15. What work will I be engaged in when the Parliament is not in session?
A. Between Parliament sessions, Fellows will continue to support their MPs on any research work that is requested of them. This may include, among other things, research for standing committee meetings and preparation for the next Parliament session. In addition, PRS will conduct workshops on important topics where Fellows can interact with experts and policy makers. Every year, Workshops were conducted on topics like Education, Health, Media Regulation and Public Finance.
Working with the Member of Parliament (MP)
Q 16. Which MP will I be working with?
A. The MPs who will be part of this Fellowship are those who are actively engaged in Parliament. The pool of MPs will include MPs from both the Treasury and the Opposition, across all major parties, and from both Houses of Parliament. MPs participating in the Fellowship are often those that PRS has interacted with in the course of its work. The assigning of LAMP Fellows to the MPs will be done on a random basis; no consideration will be given to the LAMP Fellow's political leanings, educational background, ideology or biases.
Q 17. Given that I do not know the MP I will be working with, how can I be most effective as a LAMP Fellow?
A. There is no typical road map that guides supporting the work of an MP. Engaging with Parliament and MPs requires the ability to work in an unstructured work environment. This means a LAMP Fellow may not have a typical day, with instructions and set tasks. To be effective in their work, LAMP Fellows must make an effort to understand the interests and priorities of their specific MP. While the Fellowship provides LAMP Fellows an opportunity to work with an MP, LAMP Fellows must take initiatives that will strengthen their MP’s participation in Parliament in a substantive way. Therefore the LAMP Fellow will have to actively seek out research on issues of interest to the MP and suggest ways in which the MP can raise the issues in Parliament. It is also important for the LAMP Fellow to communicate these ideas in an effective manner when interacting with the MP.
Q 18. When will I begin working with the MP?
A. The Fellowship starts with a pre-placement training for all LAMP Fellows. The monsoon session of the parliament is likely to start in July, which is when the training program concludes. The LAMP Fellows begin working with their MPs during this session.
Q 19. Will I receive a stipend during the Fellowship?
A. The LAMP Fellows will receive a stipend of Rs 17,000 per month, with an additional amount of Rs 3,000 per month to cover any expenses incurred (such as local conveyance, telephone calls, internet charges etc).
Q 20. Will I have office space to work out of?
A. Since each LAMP Fellow will be working directly with the assigned MP, the designated work space will depend on the arrangement that the MP and LAMP Fellow arrive at. MPs do not have formal office spaces in Delhi. Most interaction, including professional or business meetings, happen in designated spaces within their residences. It will depend on a case by case basis whether the MP will want the LAMP Fellow to work out of the office space at his/her residence, or make other arrangements for office space.
It is important that the MP be able to contact the LAMP Fellow for any research work at all reasonable hours even if they do not share office space.
Q 21. Will I have access to any office equipment I would need to complete my tasks?
A. LAMP Fellows will not be provided with any office equipment under the Fellowship. LAMP Fellows will be expected to use their own computers or internet connections. In addition, the LAMP Fellows’ monthly stipend includes Rs. 3,000 to cover any expenses incurred.
Q 22. Will I be required to travel for work?
A. The role requires the LAMP Fellow to be based in Delhi. The work of the LAMP Fellow will focus on assisting the MP in undertaking his/her duties in Parliament. Thus, the role may require minimal or no travel outside of Delhi. In addition, PRS may arrange, as part of its training efforts, field visits to other places, which may be outside Delhi and will be compulsory for all LAMP Fellows.
If the LAMP Fellow and the MP mutually agree, the MP could arrange a visit to his/her constituency.
Q 23. What procedure am I required to follow to apply for leave?
A. All LAMP Fellows are entitled to two days leave every month through the duration of the Fellowship. However, any such need to take time off must be first brought to PRS for approval and then approved by the assigned MP. LAMP Fellows are discouraged from taking leave during Parliamentary sessions. PRS will also inform LAMP Fellows of any other scheduled leave periods during the programme.
Q 24. Who will I report to about the tasks I have completed?
A. Reporting to the MP : On a day-to-day basis, the LAMP Fellows need to report to their assigned MPs. This entails checking with them for any tasks that have been assigned, presenting the completed work, briefing the MP, suggesting any issues that the MP might want to raise, etc.
Reporting to PRS : PRS will conduct weekly review meetings with all LAMP Fellows. This meeting will involve taking stock of the work that has been undertaken by the LAMP Fellows, their interactions with the MP and clarifying doubts. Each LAMP Fellow needs to strictly maintain a log of tasks undertaken.
Q 25. May I approach PRS for any questions or challenges I face while undertaking a given task?
A. Aside from the weekly review, a designated member of the PRS team can be contacted for any issues or questions the LAMP Fellow would like to discuss.
Q 26. I am an outstation candidate. Will any facilities for accommodation be provided to me under this programme?
A. The responsibility of arranging accommodation in Delhi rests with the LAMP Fellow.
In addition to the above, from time to time, PRS may specify other rules and regulations applicable to LAMP Fellows which, in its view, is necessary for the smooth functioning of the Fellowship process.