The prize is given annually to Indian residents (Indian citizens and non-Indians who have been residing in India for at least three years at the time of nomination) to honour outstanding achievements of contemporary researchers and scientists across six categories: Engineering and Computer Sciences, Humanities, Life Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Social Sciences. The first Infosys Prize was awarded in 2008 in mathematical science with National Institute of Advanced Studies. The award in humanities has been added since 2012.
The data shows that there is a significant disparity in Physical Sciences where 92.31% winners have been males. There are disparities in almost all of the awards, only humanities there is an almost equal breakdown. This is an interesting finding and one that marks an important and pivotal transformation needed in India, and the world, more women participation.
The Infosys prize winners are located in India, France, Portugal, Switzerland, the United Kingdom (UK), and the United States of America (USA). The maximum number of Infosys prize winners, i.e., 67.09%, are located in India. Most of them are in Delhi and Bengaluru this is an important indicator of the knowledge spillover. How can these prizes get more young people in scientific research, and societal innovation?
The median age is calculated based on the current age. The age of some of the laureates is missing due to the non-availability of data as we could not verify the data and have avoided using it. Mathematics winners have been younger by half a decade compared to other areas. It is important as after winning such an award the citation, and impact factor improves. It also brings a wider awareness about the winner and can be used for more opportunities to have an array of interesting research collaboration. This is also an area worth researching.
The highest H-Index (an index that measures productivity and citation impact of the publications, it has its limitations especially where social sciences, and humanities are concerned but we have used it to standardise the process) is recorded as 152 in the name of Dr. Bedangadas Mohanty. He won an Infosys award in the year 2021 in Physical Sciences. Also, it is found that after winning the Infosys award, there is an increase in the ranking of the H-index. The highest number of Patents were recorded in the name of Indian-American computer scientist Madhu Sudan, 85 patents. He won an Infosys award in the year 2014 in Mathematical Sciences. What other ways could we use for measuring the impact? That is a question worth pursuing for accelerating the implementation of the landmark education policy change which is the NEP, 2020.
The Infosys Prize since 2008 has been instrumental in identifying researchers, academics making a strong impact and it can be seen in the future trajectory of the award winners. Professor K. VijayRaghavan the first laureate in Life Sciences went on to serve as the DBT Secretary, and the third Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, Professor Ashutosh Sharma one of the earliest laureates served as the Secretary to the Department of Science & Technology in the Government of India. Professor Ashoke Sen one of the first recipients of the award went on to win the Breakthrough Award in Fundamental Physics in 2012, and the Dirac Medal in 2014.
The Infosys Foundation also works with young researchers and innovators to facilitate knowledge sharing. The awards are important as they build an enthusiasm for research, and innovation in science.