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100 years of IISc: Global meet in US

May 31, 2007 17:16 IST

The-Bangalore based Indian Institute of Science (IISc), founded in 1908 by legendary industrialist J N Tata, will be celebrating its 100 years of accomplishments throughout 2008-09.

In the run-up to the centenary year celebrations, Silicon Valley in the United States is gearing up to host a conference of scientists, engineers, executives, Nobel Laureates and industry head honchos from India and the US from June 22 to 24, 2007.

The IISc Global Convention is being organised by the Indian Institute of Science Alumni Association of North America (IISc AANA). It will be chaired by Prof Ramkrishna Akella from UC Santa Cruz and co-chaired by Prof S Mohan, former chief of the Society for Innovation and Development at IISc.

The conference has the three-fold objective of strengthening alumni relationships; building a global platform for interactions between the institute, alumni, industry and academia; and initiating such collaborations in six specific areas via workshops.

The event will be inaugurated by Indian President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam via a video feed. Speakers at the event include Nobel Laureate venture capitalist Arno Penzias, Applied Materials' chairman of the board James Morgan, TCS CEO S Ramadorai, Cognizant Technology Solutions vice chairman Lakshmi Narayanan, Chancellor of the University of Berkeley Prof Robert Birgeneau, IISc Director Prof. P Balaram, and other senior faculty members.

On June 22, the conference will take off with a half-day programme designed to strengthen alumni relationships. The IISc has produced about 30,000 alumni worldwide, of which about 5,000 are in the US, including several hundreds in the Bay area itself.

On the first day, the alumni will gather at the Santa Clara Marriott hotel for lunch, followed by re-unions led by IISc divisional heads or their representatives. There will be cocktails followed by dinner in the evening. The day's event will be rounded up by a speech by Prof Balaram and a cultural programme.

The second day of the conference will begins with an early breakfast, followed by welcome addresses by conference officials. Dr Kalam's inaugural video speech will be followed by the plenary speech by Chancellor of UC Berkeley Prof Robert J Birgeneau.

There will be four serial sessions of key themes: Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Life Sciences, Management of Technology, and Education for Innovation and Sustainable Development. Each session will be launched by a keynote speech followed by an interactive panel discussion. The evening will be rounded off with a banquet and an entertainment programme.

On June 24, the last day of the conference, interactions will be held among the institute officials, alumni, industry head honchos and academia through formation of collaborative research teams that will take on specific challenges of the century.

The half-day programme will have six parallel sessions on Knowledge Sciences, Information - Communication - Computers and Technology, Bio-Technology and Health Care, Nanotechnology and Materials, Energy and the Environment, Aerospace and Automotive Technologies.

A Correspondent