IIT Madras Establishes School of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence with ₹110 Crore Donation from Alumnus

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Chennai, Tamil Nadu – The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) announced the establishment of a new School of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (AI) thanks to a generous ₹110 crore donation from alumnus Sunil Wadhwani.

Wadhwani, a 1974 B.Tech graduate and co-founder of IGate and Mastech Digital, believes the new school will address the growing need for data-driven expertise. “Data-based technologies are transforming industries globally,” he said. “This school will focus on foundational and applied research in data science and AI, positioning India as a leader in these fields.”

IIT Madras Director, Prof. V. Kamakoti, expressed his gratitude for the timely donation. “This fund allows us to pursue both research and application of AI in crucial areas like healthcare, agriculture, and sustainable technologies,” he explained. The institute plans to launch a first-of-its-kind B.Tech program in AI and Data Analytics by July 2024, aiming for 50 faculty members and 500 students within the next three to four years. Admission will be based on JEE (Advanced) scores.

The Wadhwani School of Data Science and AI will offer a comprehensive range of programs, including B.Tech, M.Tech, MS, and Ph.D. in data science and AI. Additionally, collaborations like a joint M.Sc. program with the University of Birmingham and an international interdisciplinary master’s program in data science are planned.

This initiative is backed by the Wadhwani family foundation, the Wadhwani Impact Trust, which has a history of supporting social welfare, healthcare, and scientific research through its WISH Foundation and Wadhwani Institute of Artificial Intelligence. The new school at IIT Madras promises to be a significant contributor to India’s growth in the field of data science and AI.

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