June 13 to June 17, 2022 | Ashoka University & CSIR-Central Scientific Instruments Organisation



Image of Sharon Barnhardt
Sharon Barnhardt
Sharon Barnhardt is the Director – Research at the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change at Ashoka University. She is an applied development economist and behavioural scientist who uses experiments to study policy-relevant topics in India. Her behavioural research focuses on sanitation and malnutrition. Sharon is also active in Executive Education for the policy sector, having taught Behavioural Economics at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration and program evaluation with J-PAL South Asia and CLEAR. She is a Faculty Affiliate at the Jameel Abdul Latif Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) and the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA, Bonn). Her experience includes positions at the Centre for Experimental Social Sciences (Nuffield College’s lab in India), the Indian Institute of Management – Ahmedabad, IFMR Business School (at Krea University), the World Bank, and J.P. Morgan. Sharon’s academic record comprises a Ph.D. from Harvard University, an M.P.A. from Princeton University, and a Bachelor's from NYU. Sharon earned her PhD from Harvard University and also holds an MPA from Princeton University.
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Rishemjit Kaur
Dr. Rishemjit Kaur is working as a Principal Scientist at CSIR-Central Scientific Instruments Organisation, India and as an Associate Professor at the Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research. Her research interests include modeling and prediction of collective behaviours using machine learning, and NLP and leveraging it for solving engineering problems. Her work involves tailoring NLP techniques to a variety of languages, integrating a different sources of information, etc. She is currently working on developing NLP techniques for linking local cuisines and nutrition databases. She holds a PhD degree on collective intelligence and optimisation techniques. She was also a Japanese Govt. MEXT scholar at Nagoya University, Japan.
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Pavan Mamidi
Pavan Mamidi is the Director of the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change (CSBC), Ashoka University. Previously, he was the director (founding) of the Centre for Experimental Social Sciences (CESS) Nuffield – FLAME University. Pavan is interested in investigating social norms, trust, prosocial behaviour and behavioural ethics using lab and lab-in-the-field experiments. Pavan has also been a faculty member at IIM-Ahmedabad in the Business Policy area. He has taught courses on empirical research methods in the doctoral program along with law and negotiations, and dispute resolution in several public policy programs for the Government. He has also taught in policy programs for senior government officers, including the IPS at the National Police Academy and IAS at LBSNAA in Mussoorie. He has held positions at IIM Bangalore, MIT (Sloan), the University of Michigan Law School, and Harvard Law School where he is an affiliated faculty at the Center on the Legal Profession. Pavan has an LL.M. from Harvard Law School and a Doctorate (D.Phil) in Sociology from the University of Oxford.
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Ritesh Kumar
Ritesh Kumar is Principal Scientist with CSIR-Central Scientific Instrumentation Organisation, Chandigarh, India . He is also a Royal Society-Newton Fellow at University of Hertfordshire, UK. He has worked extensively on crowd-sourcing and deriving meaningful conclusions using the data gathered from noisy and varied sources. His prime research interests and projects revolve around three categories- Crowd-sourcing the smell loss using smell-kits and home tests, Understanding Chemical space of odorants using machine learning and Designing optimisation algorithms for Odor Source Localisation. He has published more than 35 papers in reputed journals like Science, Nature Scientific Reports, PloS One, Nature communications and, IEEE transaction on Cybernetics. He has worked on various govt and industry sponsored projects and consulted some exciting startups like Rymo Technologies, FoodPairing NV etc.. He has also worked with companies like TATA consumer Products Ltd. in order to provide scientific consultancies in the area of modelling taste and smell.
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Maneet Singh
Maneet Singh is a PhD Scholar in Computer Science and Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Ropar, India. He has more than six years of teaching experience in reputed universities/institutes. His research interests include opinion mining, social network analysis, computational social science and machine learning. His PhD thesis focuses on understanding different aspects of public opinion and developing models of opinion dynamics to study various social phenomena.
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Tirtha Patel
Tirtha Patel is currently a MPA candidate at the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University, concentrating in Economics and Political Development, with a dual specialization in Data Analytics and Quantitative Analysis and International Organizations/ The UN System. Prior to joining SIPA, she worked as an Experimental Research Specialist at the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change (CSBC), Ashoka University in India. She has also previously worked at the Centre for Experimental Social Sciences (CESS), Nuffield College - FLAME University and The Graduate Institute of Geneva. Tirtha holds a B.Sc. with double majors in Applied Mathematics and Environmental Studies from FLAME University.


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Sudarshan Iyengar
Dr. Sudarshan Iyengar, Associate Professor at the CSE at IIT Ropar has a Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc). An exemplary teacher who has delivered over 350 popular science talks to students of high school and advanced graduate programmes. Dr. Sudarshan has offered more than 100 hours of online lectures with novel teaching methodologies that have reached lakhs of Students. His research interests include Data Sciences, Social Computing, Social Networks, Collective Intelligence, Crowdsourced Technologies and Secure Computation.
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Kazutoshi Sasahara
Kazutoshi Sasahara received his Ph.D. from The University of Tokyo in 2005. From 2012 to 2020, he was an Assistant Professor in Graduate School of Informatics, Nagoya University. Since 2020, he is an Associate Professor in the School of Environment and Society, Tokyo Institute of Technology. His research interests are in computational social science and social innovation.
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Valentina Parma
Valentina Parma is an Assistant Director at Monell Chemical Senses Center. She is a psychologist interested in human olfaction across the lifespan. Both her basic and translational work aims at finding ways to use smell as an opportunity to improve health. She uses behavioral and physiological methods to understand how odors influence typical and atypical behavior. Recently, she has been chairing the Global Consortium for Chemosensory Research (GCCR) to understand how smell, taste and chemesthesis are affected by COVID-19 and other respiratory disorders.
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Shagata Mukherjee
Shagata Mukherjee is the Lead - Behavioural Insights Unit of India, NITI Aayog and a Deputy Director at the Centre for Social and Behavioural Change at Ashoka University. Prior to this position, Shagata was an Associate Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the Meghnad Desai Academy of Economics. He was also a Visiting Fellow at the Mumbai School of Economics and Public Policy at the University of Mumbai and an Affiliated Faculty at the Centre for Experimental Social Sciences (CESS) Nuffield -FLAME. He is the recipient of the Vernon L. Smith Young Talent Award in Experimental Finance for his research on gender and microfinance and is a co-founder of the Mumbai Behavioural Network. Shagata holds a PhD in Behavioural and Experimental Economics from the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University, a Masters degree in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University and a B.Sc. in Economics from Presidency College.
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Nicolo Cavalli
Nicolo Cavalli is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Social and Political Sciences. He teaches Applications for Management and Computational Social Science. He holds an MSc in Economic and Social Sciences from Bocconi University and a BA in Political Sciences from the University of Bologna. During this time, He was a visiting student at Sciences Po Paris and the London School of Economics. He conducted his doctoral studies in Sociology at Nuffield College, University of Oxford, and was a visiting researcher at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University. His research area includes social and political attitudes, intergroup attitudes, technological and demographic change, and research methods for the digital society.
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Subhashis Banerjee
Subhashis Banerjee is a professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, where he currently holds the Ministry of Urban Development Chair. Previously he has held the Microsoft and Naren Gupta chair professorships at IIT Delhi. His primary areas of research are computer vision and machine learning, with a special emphasis on geometric algorithms. He has also worked extensively on design of computing and networking infrastructure and IT services. Recently he has started examining policy issues in digital identity, data and privacy protection, and fairness and reliability of machine learning algorithms.
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Narges Hajimoladarvish
Narges Hajimoladarvish is a senior research fellow at the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change. Narges is a trained economist with an interest in Behavioural and Experimental Economics. She runs experiments to investigate decision-making under risk and uncertainty and has expertise in eliciting risk and time preferences. Narges has a PhD in Economics from the University of Leicester. She has 11 years of experience in teaching a variety of courses at the University of Leicester and Alzahra University. Prior to Joining CSBC, Narges was an Assistant Professor at Alzahra University where she wrote an introductory book about Behavioural Economics in Farsi and established a laboratory for Experimental Economics. She has also contributed to Financial Tribune, an Iranian English Economic Daily.
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James A. Evans
James Evans is Director of Knowledge Lab, Professor of Sociology, Faculty Director of the Computational Social Science program, and member of the Committee on Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science at the University of Chicago. I am also an External Professor at the Santa Fe Institute. His research focuses on the collective system of thinking and knowing, ranging from the distribution of attention and intuition, the origin of ideas and shared habits of reasoning to processes of agreement (and dispute), accumulation of certainty (and doubt), and the texture–novelty, ambiguity, topology–of human understanding. He is especially interested in innovation–how new ideas and technologies emerge–and the role that social and technical institutions (e.g., the Internet, markets, collaborations) play in collective cognition and discovery. Much of his work has focused on areas of modern science and technology, but he is also interested in other domains of knowledge–news, law, religion, gossip, hunches and historical modes of thinking and knowing.
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Madhavi Devaraj
Dr. Madhavi is the Deputy Director, Data Science at Uttar Pradesh Technical Support Unit (UP TSU), where she provides technical and strategic assistance to Data Science initiatives to support the overarching goal of UP TSU. Her role focuses on implementing data-driven Artificial Intelligence that can catalyze interventions aimed at reducing neonatal mortality and improve women and child health across the state. Madhavi has eight years of experience as an AI specialist and fifteen years of experience as an educator, working in reputed international universities. Her areas of expertise include data mining, predictive analytics, machine learning & deep learning. Prior to joining IHAT, she held the position of Senior Data Scientist at Accenture, Manila, Philippines, followed by Associate Professor at Asian Institute of Management, Manila, Philippines. Her industry experience has helped her develop the ability to handle Big Data. She enjoys knowledge sharing and has published 29 publications related to data science techniques in reputed journals. Her research interests lie in the fields of BlockChain, Cancer Classification, Predictive Analytics & Model Manager. Madhavi has earned a Ph.D. in Computer Science from APJ Abdul Kalam Technical University, Lucknow. She also holds other in-demand career certifications, R Programming for Data Science & Implementing Predictive Analytics with Spark in Azure HDInsight from Microsoft.
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Sneha Shashidhara
Sneha Shashidhara is a senior research fellow at the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change, with a teaching position at the Psychology Department of Ashoka University. She is a cognitive neuroscientist by training working as a researcher studying mechanisms of the brain underlying higher-order cognition and decision making, with an interest in the interaction between cognition and social psychology. A Gates-Cambridge scholar, she did her PhD, studying the multiple demand network in the brain, at the University of Cambridge. This network is active in different demands, be it language, memory, math etc and handles many types of task difficulty. Prior to that, she did her Masters in Neuroscience at International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS), Goettingen, Germany.

Teaching Assistants

Image of Poonam Adhikari
Poonam Adhikari
She is a Ph.D. Scholar in Computer Science and Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Ropar, India. She demonstrated a history of working as a Full-stack developer with experience in developing scalable web applications. She also serves as a TA in NPTEL course Discrete mathematics. Her research interest includes food and nutritional data science, dietetics, natural language processing, and machine learning. Her Ph.D. thesis focuses on understanding food consumption, and its association with health and culture.


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Kapil Gupta
Kapil is a Decision Sciences PhD student at IIM Bangalore. He graduated with a master's degree in mathematics from IIT Delhi and a bachelor's degree in computer engineering from IIITDM Chennai. Kapil worked as a Senior Data Analyst at Indxx Capital Management in Gurgaon before joining IIM Bangalore. His research interests include housing market dynamics analysis, spatio-temporal modeling, sports analytics, and the use of variable selection methods.
Image of Shikhar Shiromani
Shikhar Shiromani
Shikhar Shiromani is a Software Engineer II at NVIDIA Graphics. His work majorly involves working on ADAS software and building end-to-end solutions for the autonomous driving industry. He also spends his time researching Deep Learning solutions for problems in the social science sector. Before working at NVIDIA, he earned a B.E.(Honors) in Electrical & Electronics Engineering from BITS Pilani.
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Manish Ratna
Manish is an Associate at Clinton Health Access Initiative, where he collaborates with governments to strengthen the public health system with the aim to deliver better care to the beneficiaries. Before CHAI, he was with the Tata Strategic Management Group advising large industrial clients. He's a graduate from IIT Bombay.
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Prashansa Srivastava
Prashansa Srivastava is an incoming student at Harvard Kennedy School for the Master in Public Administration in International Development (MPA/ID). Prior to this, she worked as a Senior Research Associate at The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL South Asia) on a project studying the impact of cash transfers on the health and nutrition of women and children in the state of Jharkhand as a part of the Payments and Governance Research Program. She is passionate about social protection programs, gender and nutrition and bridging the gap in research, policy, and practice.
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Shahid Shafi
Shahid Shafi is a doctoral student in the Computer Science department at Indian Institute of Technology Ropar and is associated with Social Computing and Collective Intelligence Group. He has broad interests in Community detection, information dissemination between overlapping communities and spammer detection in social networks. Previously, he worked on finding spread blockers in social networks and their applications in various domains at University of Kashmir.
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Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma is currently State Legal Head for MRC Initiative at Jansahas and law graduate from WBNUJS, Kolkata. His interest lies in usage of data while analysing social issues. He is a conceptualizer of NUJS Diversity Report 2019, and MP Migrant Report, 2022 and Report on the Difficulties Faced by the Visually Impaired Students in law schools.
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Akash Pal
Akash is a Ph.D. Economics student at IIT Roorkee. Consumer Demand, Poverty, and Inequality are three of my research interests. He formerly worked at the Delhi-based Institute for Studies in Industrial Development.
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Trisha Chaudhuri
Trisha Chaudhuri is a Program Officer/Data Scientist at Population Council, India. She has completed her Masters in Economics from University of Calcutta. Prior to working at the Council, Trisha was as an Assistant Manager at Genpact where she was introduced to data science and had developed predictive models for both US and UK insurance carriers. At the Council, Trisha has been actively working on handling and analyzing health data, both survey and administrative. She enjoys working with data, in finding innovative insights and in creating dashboards for visualization.
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Bhavye Jain
Bhavye is an undergraduate student in Computer Science and Mathematics at Ashoka University. His current interdisciplinary research is focused on the application of machine learning, artificial neural networks, data mining to other fields such as healthcare and visual-arts. One of most recent work involves researching triple-negative-breast-cancer biopsy images and trying to employ AI-ML to reduce pathological bias and identify markers to find a directed therapy as treatment.
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Anukriti Choubey
Anukriti Choubey holds masters from the Symbiosis International University in Economics specialization in Development Economics and is currently a Consultant in FICCI. In the prior engagement with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), she was part of the CII’s BRICS international department, particularly focusing on Russia. She has also worked with NITI Aayog, Pranab Mukherjee Foundation, and the Bureau of Research on Industry & Economic Fundamentals (BRIEF India). During these engagements, she had the opportunity to undertake a field-based (RCT) project appraisal of Tata Trust’s ‘Water-ATM’ in Haryana, this was part of the SmarTgram project, Environmental impact assessment of vehicle emissions in NCR region, extend research support to NITI Aayog’s SDG North-Eastern Index and SDG India-Dashboard Index, and appraised the Compulsory Registration Order scheme of Ministry of Electronics and Information technology.
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Anurag Verma
Anurag Verma is a post graduate student with Master of Public Policy programme at the National Law School of India University. His dissertation project traces the evolution of election system in India in context of technological interventions. He is interested in application of computational methods in political science.
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Ashwin Ramaswamy
Ashwin Ramaswamy is a freelance educator and independent researcher with a range of interests. He is currently working on projects related to Indian public opinion and Agent-Based modeling of political polarization. My other major interest is the role of motivation and emotional states in learning. He is also curious about the potential of computational methods such as Agent-Based Modeling to inform and improve pedagogy in the classroom.
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Bijoyetri Samaddar
Bijoyetri Samaddar is a Senior Associate (Research) at the Centre for Social and Behaviour Change (Ashoka University). Her research interests lie in gender, social policy and quantitative methods. She holds a MA in Women’s Studies from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai (India).
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Nivedita Roy
Nivedita Roy is a Senior Researcher at Sambodhi Research and Communications Pvt Ltd and she is also currently pursuing her PhD in Public Health from OP Jindal University, India. She has 7 years of social research work experience along with membership with various associations like Population Association of America, Share-Net International and Southern Association of History of Medicinal Science. Her area of interest lies in Monitoring Learning and Evaluation, Health Systems Strengthening and social determinants of health.
Image of Dighbijoy Samaddar
Dighbijoy Samaddar
Dighbijoy is a Research Associate at J-PAL where he is working on a project which is related to energy and environment. He is interested in learning how analytics can help shape better policies. He is also interested in agent based modelling and social networks.
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Maharaj Brahma
Maharaj Brahma is a M.Tech. student at the Central Institute of Technology Kokrajhar. His current research interest lies in NLP and machine learning. Currently, he is building machine translation system from 17 Indian languages to Bodo. He is also actively building dataset for NLP tasks specially focused on low-resource languages.
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Purohit Ridhi
Ridhi Purohit is an incoming student at the Harris School of Public Policy for the MS in Computational Analysis and Public Policy program. Currently, she works as a Regulatory Compliance Consultant at Deloitte. In 2021, Ridhi completed a Graduate Certificate in Public Policy with the Takshashila Institution. Her interests include technology policy, spread of misinformation/disinformation in social media networks and human behaviour in socio-technical systems.
Image of Sanya Srivastava
Sanya Srivastava
Sanya Srivastava is a policy professional with an undergraduate degree in Economics and is currently a graduate student in the field of international development and public policy. She is passionate about strengthening governance structures and solving sustainable developmental challenges. Her current research interests lie in understanding the intersection between economic development, social progress and commercial growth through quantitative evidence and experience-based policies.
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Balaraju Battu
Balaraju Battu have a PhD in cognitive science. He try to understand human machine interactions in the context of trust and cooperation using evolutionary game theory and experimental economics.
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Manoranjan Ghosh
Manoranjan Ghosh, currently working as India Smart Cities Fellow (Fellowship of Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs) at National Institute of Urban Affairs and hold a Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India. He is a Climate Change Studies researcher at heart and by training and have expertise on spatial data analytics, machine learning tools, and PRA.
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Pooja Sarin
Pooja Sarin is a Data Science Researcher (Doctorate Research Scholar) at the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, working in the space of applied machine learning for Social Media Challenges. She loves to explore and work with several use-cases and applications related to Big Data from the business/industry perspective, also keeping Sustainability, Innovation, and AI for Social Good in her mind. Before joining the Ph.D. program, she has worked as Research Associate and explored the domain of Big Data and its applications (Air Pollution & Computer Vision Applications) at IIT Delhi. She also has Research Experience as an M.Tech trainee at Central Scientific Instrumentation Organization (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research), Chandigarh, in the domain of Earthquake Data Analytics. She is B.Tech and M.Tech in Computer Science and Engineering.
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Ramit Das
Ramit Das is a PhD Student @ The Institute of Mathematical, Sciences, Chennai. He works on ideas spanning across theoretical computer science, mathematical logic, formal game theory. He wants to explore the connections from theory to practise for ideas in Game Theory. The fascinating ideas of designing human systems that will be able last as long as a good software design truly occupy his mind. He also, just like most traditional Computer Science researchers, find ideas in complexity theory - p vs np problem, decentralised decision problem, fascinating and has this general love for puzzles and games!

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