The donations will be used to set up a chair for Computer Science and Engineering at the institute
Anand Rajaraman and Venky Harinarayanan, two alumni of Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) have donated a sum of $1 million to fund a chair for Computer Science and Engineering at the institute.
The donations by the Silicon Valley based IIT Madras alumni were revealed at the 42nd International Conference on Very Large Data Bases in New Delhi yesterday. The objective of the donation is to encourage teaching and research projects in the field of computer science. The duo hopes that the chair will help attract the best talent to the Department of Computer Science at IIT Madras.
It has been stipulated that the scholars chosen for the “Venky Harinarayanan and Anand Rajaraman Visiting Chair Program” should be among the most eminent people in the field. It is also hoped that the visiting scholars will positively affect the institution and aid research in relevant areas. An advisory committee comprising Professor Jeff Ulman, Stanford University; Professor Randy Katz, University of California, Berkley and Rajaraman; has already been formed to aid the Department of Computer Science, IIT Madras in finding and selecting the best candidates for the position.
Addressing the gathering at conference, Rajaraman stated, "Data-driven approaches are transforming the world we live in. The impact of data and algorithms is being felt in every field of human endeavor — industry, sciences, humanities, and government."
"It gives us great pleasure to enable IIT Madras to contribute to the research work in this field, and join the ranks of the select few institutions that are inventing the future," added Harinarayan.
Responding to the announcement, Professor Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras stated, "the Venky Harinarayan and Anand Rajaraman Visiting Chairs Program in CSE will have a force multiplier effect in our UG, PG and research programmes in CSE. The constant flow of the leading lights in emerging areas of CSE from academia and industry will expose our students to the latest thinking in these fast-moving fields. It will also provide opportunities for our faculty, research scholars and students to collaborate with the visiting chairs, and encourage a strong two-way flow of scholars."