Kofi A Annan felicitates winners of Infosys Prize 2013

Kofi A Annan, chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation and former Secretary-General of the United Nations felicitated the winners of the Infosys Prize 2013 across six categories – Engineering & Computer Science, Humanities, Life Sciences, Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Social Sciences, at a glittering award ceremony held in Bangalore.

The seven winners of the Infosys Prize 2013 are – Prof Ramgopal Rao for Engineering and Computer Science; Prof Nayanjot Lahiri for Archaeology and Prof Ayesha Kidwai for Linguistics under the Humanities category; Dr Rajesh Gokhale for Life Sciences; Prof Rahul Pandharipande for Mathematics; Prof Shiraz Naval Minwalla for Physical Sciences and Prof Aninhalli R. Vasavi for Social Sciences.

The winners were selected from a pool of 216 nominations by a panel comprising of renowned experts and academicians, led by six jury chairs – Pradeep K Khosla, Engineering and Computer Science; Amartya Sen, Humanities; Inder Verma, Life Sciences; Srinivasa SR Varadhan, Mathematics; Shrinivas Kulkarni, Physical Sciences; and Kaushik Basu, Social Sciences.

The prize in each category comprises of a gold medallion, a citation expounding the laureate’s work and Rs 55 lakh as tax-free prize money (US$ 87,000 approximately). This year’s prize in the Humanities category is split equally between the two winners.

In the past five years, the ISF has recognized 31 laureates. To mark its fifth year anniversary, the foundation has published a commemorative book containing the essence of the work done by the Infosys Prize laureates.

Kofi Atta Annan said, “Academic and scientific research play a core role towards solving some of the big challenges of our times such as climate change, environmental degradation, food shortages and poverty alleviation. It is no overstatement to say that the future of the world depends on the ingenuity of the young scientists dedicating their lives and talents to the resolution of these issues.”

NR Narayana Murthy, trustee, Infosys Science Foundation and executive chairman of the Board, Infosys said, “Progress of scientific research in India is crucial to the development of our nation and an area of keen interest to me. The Infosys Prize is the culmination of a long cherished vision to recognize excellence in research and inspire many more Indians to pursue careers in fields of science and humanities.”

Srinath Batni, member of the Board, Infosys and president of the Board of Trustees, Infosys Science Foundation said, “The Indian industry has made rapid strides in gaining global prominence over the last two decades. We will require solid efforts to build a strong, independent base in scientific research. The Infosys Science Foundation remains committed to furthering this goal by honoring outstanding contributions by scientists and researchers. We stay focused on creating role models to encourage the pursuit of scientific excellence in the country.”

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