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Building Bharat-Boston Biosciences (B4) Program

Young Scientist Program: Online Workshop on Big Data in Life Sciences and Healthcare

Applications are now closed!


Advancements in high-throughput genomics, medical diagnostics, computational neuroscience, biopharma, medical and cellular imaging, and related fields have led to the generation of massive data. This poses a huge challenge to life science researchers to handle such large datasets and analyze and interpret them. Considering the size of the data, it is estimated that the annual growth of data generation will touch 44 trillion zetabytes by the year 2024.The advent of big data has impacted personalized medicine and healthcare service significantly in analyzing electronic health records and evidence-based medicine. Efficient computing platforms and tools, sophisticated measurement technologies, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence have transformed life sciences and healthcare, enabling unprecedented research and clinical outcomes.

Realizing the need to train researchers at the interface of data science, computing, and life sciences, a 7-day online workshop on “Big Data in Life Sciences and Healthcare” will be organized by IBAB, Bangalore under the aegis of the Building Bharat-Boston Biosciences (B4) Program funded by the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India. The workshop will focus on use of big data in genomics, precision medicine, pharma and drug discovery, and AI and machine learning in analysis of biological and medical imaging data. The workshop will have didactic lectures and research talks followed by online hands-on sessions in the aforementioned areas.

The different sessions of the workshop will be moderated by speakers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Broad Institute, Harvard University, and renowned researchers from Indian academia and industry.

The selected students are expected to attend every session of the workshop.


Open to Indian students currently pursuing any of the following courses in Indian institutions:

  • Doctoral researchers in Life Sciences / Biotechnology / Bioinformatics / Computer Science who are currently engaged in relevant areas of research
  • Students currently enrolled in M.Sc / MBBS / M.Pharm / ME / M.Tech programs

Application Instructions

The below instructions apply to non-Harvard-affiliated candidates ONLY. Harvard-affiliated candidates can begin by accessing the application link in Step 3. 

  1. Request an XID. You MUST do this in order to apply.
  2. Follow the instructions in the email sent by the XID system. If you do not see it on your inbox, please check your spam folder.
  3. Wait 24 hours after activating your XID, and then click here to access the application. If this link does not take you to the application of the Bioimaging workshop, please search for “B4 Big Data Workshop 2021.”
  4. Log in with your XID (you cannot use the “HarvardKey” option). You are now able to begin your B4 application.

The following documents are needed to complete the applicationEach must be uploaded as one single PDF of size lesser than 2 MB:

  • One-page current resume/CV
  • One-page statement of interest, in which you describe the rationale for pursuing this course and what you hope to gain from it
  • Academic records from Bachelor’s degree courses through the most recent course or semester/year
  • Two letters of recommendation (which must be on the letterhead of the recommender with their signatures, and must be uploaded by the recommender via the link sent to their email from the CARAT system).

Please note:

  • The selection process will be highly competitive with a class size limited to 25 students.
  • Applications will be reviewed by a panel of faculty. The decision of the panel will be final.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered.
  • Do not write directly to Harvard faculty regarding the workshop and grant opportunities.

Please contact Savitha G. Ananth (, Program Manager, with any questions.

This course has been made possible through a collaboration between The Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA, IBAB, Bangalore, India, and IISER, Pune, India and is funded by Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.