BANGALURU: Five eminent scientists, a noted historian and a reputed linguist from premier Indian institutes and overseas were Tuesday, 12 November, 2013 declared winners of the Infosys Science Foundation awards for 2013 in Bengaluru.
Set up by the Indian IT bellwether, Infosys Ltd., the not-for-profit trust is funded by a corpus of Rs.100 crore ($18 million), contributed by its trustees, including co-founders of the company.
The prize money is awarded every year since 2009 in each of the six Science disciplines and humanities. It has increased to Rs. 55 lakh from Rs. 50 lakh this year.
In addition to the prize, each category award includes a gold medallion and a citation certificate.
The winners are: Ramgopal Rao, nano-electronics professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, in engineering and computer science; Rajesh Gokhale, director of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi, in life sciences; Rahul Pandharipande, mathematics professor at Eidgenussiche Technische Hochschule, Zurich in Switzerland, in mathematical sciences; Shiraz Naval Minwalla, theoretical physics professor at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, in physical sciences; and Aninhalli R. Vasavi, senior fellow at Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi, in social sciences.
Shiraz Naval Minwalla is also a member of the Institute for Advanced Studies at New Jersey, US.
Nayanjot Lahiri, history professor in University of Delhi, and Ayesha Kidwai, professor in linguistics in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, bagged the prize in humanities category, sharing the prize money.
“Science and research are imperative pillars in any nation’s progress. By honouring outstanding researchers and celebrating their achievements, our prize aims to inspire young minds in India to explore sciences and increase innovative work being done in the country today,” Infosys founder chairman N.R. Narayana Murthy said on the occasion here.
The winners were evaluated and chosen for the impact of their research by a panel of jurors comprising eminent scientists and professors across the world.
The jury chairs are Pradeep K. Khosla for engineering & computer science, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen for humanities, Inder Verma for life sciences, Srinivasa S.R. Varadhan for mathematical sciences, Shrinivas Kulkarni for physical sciences, and Kaushik Basu for social sciences.
United Nations seventh secretary-general Kofi Atta Annan will felicitate the winners at an award ceremony Feb 8, 2014, here.
In its efforts to mainstream science, the foundation invites eminent personalities for giving public talks across the country as part of its year-long lecture series.
The foundation also organises an inter-school festival ‘Limit Infinity’, aimed at fostering interest in science among school students, keeping physics as the central theme for 2013.