Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Research in India

This post is for those of us thinking of going back to do research in India. Thanks to EJ for the link, which is a conversation with Prof. Ashutosh Sharma from IITK. Prof. Sharma recently won the 2010 Infosys Prize.

He talks about how things have changed (just like all Indian adults of his generation), particularly for Indian scientists. Some of the better quotes in the article are "education is too important to be left to teachers" and "ours is a reverential system which doesn’t encourage freedom of thought; in fact there’s little freedom of thought."

He also made some comments about how alternative careers ("history, archaeology, fine and performing arts") are great ways to train the mind but are ignored in India because of social pressures. These insights stemmed from the fact that he wanted to learn philosophy in school, but was prevented from doing so because of his situation.

Overall, I get the feeling he is a great mentor for a lot of lucky, lucky people.

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