In continuation of its effort to recognise researchers who have made impactful contributions in their respective fields, Infosys Science Foundation on Thursday announced the names of Infosys Prize winners for 2014 across six different categories. The winners were selected by a panel of jury consisting of eminent scientists and professors including Amartya Sen, Inter Verma, Shrinivas Kulkarni and Kaushik Basu among others.
Infosys Science Foundation is a not-for-profit trust which was instituted by Infosys in 2009 with a corpus of Rs 100 crore ($16 million). The trust today also announced that Vishal Sikka, who took over the charge of CEO & MD of the Bangalore-based company in August this year will be inducted to the trust this year.
This year, Jayant Haritsa, a professor of Super Computer Education and Research Centre at IISc was announced winner of Infosys Prize 2014 in the Engineering and Computer Science category while Madhu Sudan, Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research New England in Mathematical Sciences.
The other winners are Shamnad Basheer, founder and managing trustee, Increasing Diversity by Increasing Access (In Humanities), Shubha Tole, Associate Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai (in Life Sciences category); Srivari Chandrasekhar, a scientist at Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (in Physical Sciences category).
Besides, Esther Duflo, a Professor in the Department of Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been awarded in the Social Sciences category for her contribution to development economics.
Announcing the winners, Infosys co-founder N R Narayana Murthy whos is also the president of Board of Trustees at Infosys Science Foundation advocated higher autonomy and less governmental interference in the functioning of educational institutions. "I think, my own personal view is there should be higher and higher levels of autonomy, government should not interfere in setting up colleges, in running colleges. The market, the society will decide which is a good university, which is not a good university, rather than government mandating."