The Infosys Science Foundation (ISF) awarded the winners of the Infosys Prize 2019 for their outstanding contributions to science and research at an awards ceremony in Bengaluru. Two IIT professors were also awarded the Infosys Prize 2019.
Prof. Sunita Sarawagi, Institute Chair Professor, Computer Science and Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT Bombay) won the award in Engineering and Computer Science for her research in databases, data mining, machine learning and natural language processing, and for important applications of these research techniques.
Dr. Manu V. Devadevan, Assistant Professor, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Mandi (IIT Mandi) won the award in Humanities 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.
Apart from Engineering and Computer Science, and Humanities, the winners were conferred the prize for contributions across four fields, namely, Life Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, Physical Sciences and Social Sciences. The winners were felicitated by the Chief Guest, Prof. Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate, Professor of Economics and Philosophy, Harvard University, USA, with a pure gold medal, a citation and a prize purse of $100,000.
Prof. Amartya Sen said: “There are deep links between friendship and knowledge. Our intellectual horizons expand when we learn from each other. We can give to the world much more than what we get from it. For example, the mathematical revolution in India from the fifth century onwards, led particularly by Aryabhata, was influenced by intellectual developments in Greece, Babylon and Rome, but Aryabhatian mathematics, in turn, took gigantic leaps in India, and then spread abroad, with transformational impact on China, on the Arab world and eventually on Europe.”
“The constructive role of friendship applies not only across the national borders, but also within. Divisions between groups and sects not only damage our social lives, but they can also work as barriers to intellectual progress within and across the nations. Friendship is, in fact, central to the development of knowledge,” he added.
The event was attended by scientists and academicians from India and abroad, business leaders, young researchers and students. Trustees of the Infosys Science Foundation, SD Shibulal, President of the Board of Trustees, NR Narayana Murthy, Nandan Nilekani, TV Mohandas Pai, S Gopalakrishnan, K Dinesh and Srinath Batni, were also present at the award ceremony.
Other Laureates of the Infosys Prize 2019
Dr. Manjula Reddy, Chief Scientist, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad for Life Sciences. Prof. Siddhartha Mishra, Professor, Department of Mathematics, ETH Zürich, for Mathematical Sciences. Prof. G. Mugesh, Professor, Department of Inorganic and Physical Chemistry, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru for Physical Sciences. Prof. Anand Pandian, Professor, Department of Anthropology, Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, Johns Hopkins University for Social Sciences.