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Winners of Infosys Prize 2019 announced in Bengaluru

Each winner of the Infosys Prize 2019 will get a pure gold medal, a citation and a prize purse of USD 100,000 (or its equivalent in Rupees).

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru | November 7, 2019 5:58:31 pm
Infosys-Prize-2019-Bengaluru-bangalore-announced- The winners were picked by a panel of renowned scholars and professors from196 nominations.

The Infosys Science Foundation (ISF) Thursday announced winners of the Infosys Prize 2019 in six different categories.

“A panel of accomplished jurors comprising renowned scholars and professors shortlisted the winners of Infosys Prize 2019 from 196 nominations,” ISF said in a statement.

The winners of Infosys Prize 2019 are – Sunita Sarawagi (Engineering and Computer Sciences), V. Devadevan (Humanities), Manjula Reddy (Life Sciences), Siddhartha Mishra (Mathematical Sciences), G. Mugesh (Physical Sciences), and Anand Pandian (Social Sciences).

Engineering and Computer Science – Prof. Sunita Sarawagi

Sunita Sarawagi, Institute Chair Professor, Computer Science and Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay has been awarded the Infosys Prize in Computer Science category for her research in databases, data mining, machine learning and natural language processing, and for important applications of these research techniques.

“The prize recognizes her pioneering work in developing information extraction techniques for unstructured data. Prof. Sarawagi’s work has practical applications in helping clean up unstructured data like addresses on the web and in repositories which then helps in more efficient handling of queries,” the ISF statement read.

Humanities – Dr Manu V Devadevan

In the Humanities category, Manu V. Devadevan, Assistant Professor, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Mandi has been picked winner for his original and wide-ranging work on pre-modern South India. He critically reinterprets much of the conventional wisdom about the cultural, religious and social history of the Deccan and South India. Dr Devadevan’s primary research interests include political and economic processes in pre-modern South India, literary practices in South India and the study of ancient inscriptions from the region.

Life Sciences – Dr Manjula Reddy

Dr Manjula Reddy, Chief Scientist, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad has emerged winner of the Infosys Prize 2019 under the Life Sciences category for her groundbreaking discoveries concerning the structure of cell walls in bacteria.

“Dr Reddy and her colleagues have revealed critical steps of cell wall growth that are fundamental for understanding bacterial biology. This work could potentially help in creating a new class of antibiotics to combat antibiotic resistant microbes,” the statement read.

Mathematical Sciences – Prof. Siddhartha Mishra

Under the Mathematical Sciences category, the Infosys Prize 2019 will be awarded to Siddhartha Mishra, Professor, Department of Mathematics, ETH Zürich, for his contributions to Applied Mathematics, particularly for designing numerical tools for solving problems in the real world.

Prof. Mishra’s work has been used in climate models, in astrophysics, aerodynamics, and plasma physics. He has produced codes for complicated realistic problems such as tsunamis generated by rock slides, and waves in the solar atmosphere.

Infosys-Prize-Winners-announcement-2019-SD-Shibulal-NR-Narayana-Murthy-Nandan-Nilekani-Bangalore-759 (L-R): Salil Parekh, Kris Gopalakrishnan, Nandan Nilekani, S D Shibulal, Narayana Murthy K. Dinesh,and Srinath Batni at the Infosys Prize 2019 winner announcement event. Express Photo

Physical Sciences – Prof. G Mugesh

The Infosys Prize 2019 for Physical Sciences will be awarded to G Mugesh, Professor, Department of Inorganic and Physical Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bengaluru for his seminal work in the chemical synthesis of small molecules and nanomaterials for biomedical applications.

“His work has contributed to the understanding of the role of trace elements, selenium and iodine, in thyroid hormone activation and metabolism, and this research has led to major medical advances,” the jury observed.

Social Sciences – Prof. Anand Pandian

Anand Pandian, Professor, Department of Anthropology, Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, Johns Hopkins University has been picked winner of the Prize under Social Sciences category.

“Prof. Pandian’s research encompasses several themes such as cinema, public culture, ecology, nature and the theory and methods of anthropology. His writing pushes the boundaries of how anthropologists render into words the worlds they encounter. His work breaks new ground,” the jury said explaining why he was picked a winner.

The winners were announced in an event held in the Infosys Bengaluru campus. “Many Infosys Prize laureates have gone on to contribute significantly in key areas like healthcare, genetics, climate science, astronomy and poverty alleviation, amongst other things. Their work has immediate implications for the human race and the planet. We hope it catalyzes social development,” S D Shibulal, Co-founder, Infosys Limited and ISF president said.

Discovery, invention should happen in India every month: Narayana Murthy

Earlier during the event, Infosys founder N R Narayana Murthy delivered a lecture titled ‘Why does India need fundamental research’.

“We can find appropriate solutions to our problems if we educate our youth to think independently to use research and its applications to find scientific and technological solutions to our problems. I want India to be a place where discovery and invention happen every month,” he said.

Each winner of the Infosys Prize 2019 will get a pure gold medal, a citation and a prize purse of USD 100,000 (or its equivalent in Rupees).

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