In 2006, Jawaharlal Nehru University set up the North East India Studies Programme (NEISP) to promote teaching and research on North East India. The programme was established on an interdisciplinary framework involving diverse disciplines being pursued in five different schools of the university.
The main thrust of NEISP is to undertake critical research and build up a body of scholarly works on the region. It aims not only to introduce the scholars and students to the diverse and complex issues of the North East but also to equip them with appropriate skills necessary to carry out research on social, historical, cultural, political, economic and environmental issues of the region and its neighbouring areas. It also seeks to infuse elements of criticality in the students in their approach towards policies and laws applied to the region across time and space.
NEISP has started direct Ph.D. level programmes since August 2013. In addition, it is also developing undergraduate courses which are inter-disciplinary in nature. NEISP promotes active interaction between JNU and various Universities and institutions operating in different parts of the country and the North Eastern region. This is being done through the exchange of scholars, workshops, seminars, symposia etc., on specific themes pertinent to the region. The NEISP also engages in comparative research which covers themes connecting local and global issues and their wider implications.
The ultimate goal of NEISP is to develop it into a centre of excellence which would serve as a resource base for scholars from diverse parts of India and abroad and be a platform that brings academics, administrators, policy makers, civil society actors and activists interested in the region to dialogue on the problems and prospects of the North East.