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YIM2013 – the beginning of the plan…

Athulaprabha Murthi,

The Young Investigators Meeting – is a recruiting ground for Research Institutes and Universities to select potential candidates, a job fair for the PostDoctoral Fellows (PDFs) and a networking ground for PDFs and Young Investigators (YIs) to not just interact among their peers but also with well known scientists and researchers around the country. Little known though is the effort that goes into play to make all this happen. The past four meetings were organized by young scientists, within India under the mentorship of Prof. Ron Vale. As IBS commences with the ground work for the next YIM, I thought it would be interesting for all those aspiring to attend YIM 2013 to have an insight into all the planning that go into making YIM a reality.

The organizers for YIM2013 will be –Kavita Babu (IISER, Mohali), Manjunath G.P (IISER, Pune), Swati Tiwari (JNU) and Ron Vale (UCSF) and IBS (Athulaprabha Murthi & Swetha Suresh).

One of the first things to organizing a meeting is selection of the Venue – we nailed down Jodhpur, Rajasthan. This was chosen for a variety of reasons. First, YIMs have been held in almost all corners of India except North – yes Jodhpur is not exactly north but is at least closer to the Northern part of India. Second was accessibility – Jodhpur is easily accessible by Air, Train or Bus. Finally, location and cost – no doubt Jodhpur is an exotic location, but for a place of such repute it turned out to be more cost effective than the other places that we were looking at. Next, we sought out some hotel options – there were only 2 places in the city that had sufficient rooms to house 120 people and conference facilities, banquet halls that could cater to the fairly large crowd of YIM – Taj Vivanta and Taj Gateway. Three of the organizers visited Jodhpur to finalize the venue, and of the hotels we visited, all us unanimously liked Gateway.

Taj GatewayWith the venue fixed, speakers had to be shortlisted and invited to be a part of the excitement at YIM. As always, YIM needed a theme! In the light of increasing interest for education in India, Research and Education was thought to be apt for this year. All our speakers for the year are dedicated educators who are also accomplished researchers. As our feature of last month illustrates, combining research with education produces wonders especially by allowing the students to experience what they are instructed in the classroom, thereby etching key concepts permanently in one’s brain. We have sought to have a diverse group of speakers who will share their experience & success in developing programs that encourage and promote education. Do check the YIM2013 site regularly; the invited speakers list as well as schedule will be available soon. 

                                                                                                                                        Rajasthani Artis

YIM is a unique meeting in many ways – it brings together PDFs, YIs and institute Directors in a relaxed setting. Rarely do so many Institute Directors (20 Directors attended YIM2012) come together under one roof, and even more rarely is their schedule so relaxed as to allow for easy interaction with potential candidates.  Poster sections and oral presentations allow for ample scientific discussion, infusion of social and cultural activities relaxes everyone sufficiently to network. This is obvious in the fact that many institutes have recruited through YIM, scientific collaborations have stemmed off of these meeting and people are in touch years later. Other important things happen there as well – IBS was an idea that started off in YIM2009 but today it is a reality…..who knows what new ideas take off the ground at YIM2013……

Jaswant Tada

If you want to be a part of the excitement at Jodhpur, Feb 9th to 14th, apply for the YIM – our application portal will open by mid or end of June.

Hello Whether INSPIRE Faculty fellows are considered as PDFs


Whether INSPIRE Faculty fellows are considered as PDFs or YIs in YIM2013?

Thank you

you will be considered as YI Athula

you will be considered as YI


Choosing of Research & Education as the theme of  YIM 2013

Choosing of Research & Education as the theme of  YIM 2013 is unexceptionable!  However, please do not forget the over 20,000 undergarduate colleges in the country. Indian Science is made or unmade there, whether we like it or not!

Functionally networking these colleges by means of Collaborative Undergarduate Research and Education (CURE) programs, as is being initiated  recently at the Homi Bhabha Center for Science Education(HBCSE), TIFR  could help. There is scope for many more initiatives to empower these institutions, their faculty and the students. If the enrollment rate is to catch up with China at the undergraduate level, we will have many  more such colleges in far flung palces in the country and these need to be connected with the resource rich centers elsewhere, as is the need of the day in case of several existing ones. 

We should also ensure that the science we teach in these places reflects the science we practice.  A tall order, but  not insurmountable.  In the case of Biology, we request one and all to support the  Collaborative Undergraduate Biology Research (CUB Research), initiated at the HBCSE, by becoming a partner.  With YIM and IBS on our side, we can do wonders!

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