Prof. Kamakoti Veezhinathan took charge as the new Director of Indian Institute of Technology Madras today, 17th January 2022. Prof Kamakoti takes charge as Director from his predecessor, Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi, who has completed two terms as the Director of the Institute.
Dr. Kamakoti took charge in the presence of Deans, Dr. Jane Prasad, Registrar, and other officials. Dr. Pawan Goenka, Chairman, Board of Governors, IIT Madras, participated virtually along with other Board Members.
Prof. Kamakoti is a faculty in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at IIT Madras and also held the position of Associate Dean for Industrial Consultancy and Sponsored Research (ICSR), IIT Madras. He holds numerous positions in various Government agencies and bodies including being a member of the National Security Advisory Board, Government of India.
Outlining his vision to retain the Institutes’ leadership position in National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) by the Ministry of Education, Prof. Kamakoti said, “My focus would be to retain IIT Madras at the top of the rankings, while constantly striving to enhance the academic and research excellence of the institute.”
Speaking about how IIT Madras would create a key impact nationally as well as in the State of Tamil Nadu, Prof. Kamakoti added, “With our cutting edge work in research and development, we will strive to engage more collaboratively with the Government – both at the Centre and the State – to make our work translational and relevant to address the needs of the nation and the State and its people, and contribute to the overall development. I am confident that we will take a positive leap forward with renewed vigour to achieve the goals set out for us as an ‘Institute of Eminence.”
Outlining his priorities for the institute in 2022 and beyond, Prof Kamakoti highlighted that his focus would be on:
- Enhancing the reach and impact of Online Education and Distance Learning
- Collaboratively working with the School Education Boards in further strengthening a holistic curriculum
- Skill development programs targeting high quality vocational training
- Increased interactions with young school students to encourage interest in Science and Research
- Industry oriented MTech program for international students
- Increase of multidisciplinary quotient in curriculum with special emphasis on Languages, Philosophy, Art, Environmental and value-based education
- Enhanced industry participation with increased adjunct and faculty-of-practice positions
- Translational research with emphasis on problems of social relevance, including Regenerative Agriculture, Industry 4.0, Medical technology and Smart civil construction technology
- Paperless efficient and effective governance through AI driven hyper automation.
Speaking on how he would strengthen the already-strong research base of IIT Madras, Prof. Kamakoti added, “I look forward to expanding the frontiers of our research and innovation with our highly motivated and talented faculty and students, making IIT Madras a campus of choice for global and Indian faculty, students and industry.”
Prof. Kamakoti led the Research team that designed and booted up India’s first Indigenously-developed Microprocessor ‘SHAKTI’ that can be used in mobile computing devices and networking systems. It can reduce reliance on imported microprocessors in the Communications and Defence Sectors. ‘SHAKTI’ Microprocessor can be used by other sectors as well as it is on par with its international peers.
Prof. Kamakoti was appointed by the Union Commerce Ministry in 2017 as the Chairman of a Taskforce on leveraging Artificial Intelligence for development across various fields.
He has been presented the following awards:
Ø Abdul Kalam Technology Innovation National Fellowship, 2020
Ø IESA Techno Visionary Award, 2018
Ø IBM Faculty Award, 2016
Ø DRDO Academy Excellence Award, 2013
Ø IITM Young Faculty Recognition Award (YFRA), 2007
Ø VASVIK Research Award 2017 in the category of Electrical & Electronic Sciences & Technology
Ø Lifetime achievement award from Advanced Computing and communication society (ACCS)