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Algorithms and Neural Circuits: How Do Animals Solve Olfactory Tasks?

Algorithms and Neural Circuits: How Do Animals Solve Olfactory Tasks?

Recently, Professor Venkatesh Murthy gave a talk entitled “Algorithms and Neural Circuits in Olfaction,” at the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences in Bangalore, exploring how animals sense the chemical world to guide their behaviors. “Fluctuating mixtures of odorants, often transported in fluid environments, are detected by an array of chemical sensors and parsed by neural circuits to recognize odor objects that can inform behavioral decisions.

TraumaLink Provides Rapid Emergency Response in Bangladesh

TraumaLink Provides Rapid Emergency Response in Bangladesh

TraumaLink was founded in 2013 as a volunteer-based emergency response system providing free care to traffic injury victims in Bangladesh. Recently, in November 2019, the organization celebrated its five year anniversary. The project grew out of a winter session trip that brought together three Harvard T.H. Chan students: Jon Moussally, Eric Dunipace, and Ryan Fu. During their time in Dhaka, they met Mridul Chowdhury, CEO of mPower Social Enterprises, Ltd., who holds an MPA in International Development from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

India Science Festival: Bridging the Gap Between Science and Society

India Science Festival: Bridging the Gap Between Science and Society

The beginning of 2020 marked a massive celebration of science with the India Science Fest (ISF) in Pune, India, which aimed to bridge the gap between scientists and society and help the youth engage with the latest in science and technology from across the world. The festival, organized by Aspiring Minds and the Mittal Institute, brought the international science community to the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER). Social Alpha, the Tata Institute of Genetics and Society, and Google AI Research were key supporters of the festival.

Spring Communications Intern: Poster Design

Spring Communications Intern: Poster Design

The Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute is seeking a Communications Intern for the Spring 2020 semester! The Institute engages in interdisciplinary research to deepen the understanding of critical issues in South Asia, and the Communications team promotes its events, programs and research through various forms of multimedia content. We’re looking for an intern who can assist with the creation of posters for the various events hosted by the Institute.

The Mittal Institute’s 2016–2020 Arts Program Report

The Mittal Institute’s 2016–2020 Arts Program Report

The digital version of the Mittal Institute’s 2016–2020 Arts Program Report has just been released! The report highlights the Mittal Institute’s Visiting Artist Fellows from 2016–2020, as well as the new developments in the Program on Conservation of Culture. Check out the digital version here to learn more. Below, read Professor Jinah Kim’s introduction to the report and the Arts Program at the Mittal Institute.

Neha Hiranandani: Girl Power and Breaking the Mold in India

Neha Hiranandani: Girl Power and Breaking the Mold in India

This January, Neha Hiranandani will join us in Mumbai to discuss her recently published book, Girl Power: Indian Women Who Broke the Rules, with Professor Jacqueline Bhabha of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Centering on the challenges young women still face when it comes to access to education and health while negotiating with the societal expectations, Hiranandani and Bhabha will discuss the stories of “rebel women” in India — pondering the factors that contribute to the success of those who break the mold, against the odds.

A Paean to Learning to “See” and the 1947 Partition

A Paean to Learning to “See” and the 1947 Partition

Recently, Professor Tarun Khanna — Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School and Director of the Mittal Institute — traveled to Bengaluru to give the D.D. Kosambi Lecture, “A Paean to Learning to ‘See’” at the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences. The talk was structured around the use of basic analytics to better “see” some overlooked regularities in human behavior — drawing on examples from recent Indian history, including the Partition of British India in 1947 and the annual Maha Kumbh Mela religious gathering, and from contemporary social phenomena.

Remembering Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder of BRAC

Remembering Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder of BRAC

The Mittal Institute is sending our deepest condolences to Sir Fazle Hasan Abed’s family and friends in his passing. He will be warmly remembered and solely missed. Abed Bhai, Founder and Chairperson of Bangladesh development organization BRAC, gave the Mittal Institute’s 2014 Mahindra Lecture, providing an enlightening account of the extraordinary accomplishments of the global organization. “Hope is an element in which people take action, and energize themselves out of poverty,” he said.

Sakshi Gupta: Framing the Human Condition Through Sculpture and Mixed Media

Sakshi Gupta: Framing the Human Condition Through Sculpture and Mixed Media

Sakshi Gupta is an accomplished sculptor and mixed media artist from India and one of the Mittal Institute’s Fall 2019 Visiting Artist Fellows. Her practice frames human conditions of understanding, progressing, suffering, and halting due to a lack or gain of knowledge, will, or energy. Her work grapples with the need to achieve a balance between life’s inherent polarities, exhibiting this by utilizing materials often considered waste or ordinary. She’s dedicated her life to an immersive journey through form and material, toward the non-material and experiential.

The Crossroads Emerging Leaders Program Reaches New Heights — What’s Next?

The Crossroads Emerging Leaders Program Reaches New Heights — What’s Next?

The Crossroads Emerging Leaders Program began in 2017, a joint effort between the Harvard Business School Club of the GCC, HBS Professors Tarun Khanna and Karim Lakhani, and the Mittal Institute. This year, the Crossroads Emerging Leaders Program received 6,093 total applications from 97 countries spanning the Middle East, Africa, Central Asia, Latin America, South Asia, and US students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). Of the candidates, 4,263 were selected to move onto the next round, which consisted of a fully funded selection of interdisciplinary courses offered online on HarvardX through Crossroads’ partnership with edX.

The Nepal Mandala’s Place in South Asia

The Nepal Mandala’s Place in South Asia

Symposia dedicated to the art and culture of early modern Nepal come around only once in a generation. And the atmosphere at the Nepal Mandala in an Early Modern South Asia symposium last week, run by Jinah Kim (Harvard University) and Todd Lewis (College of the Holy Cross), reflected the rarity of this meeting. The symposium brought together international experts on the history, culture, and societies of the “Nepal Mandala” — or the Kathmandu Valley — to present papers on the region’s place in early modern South Asia.

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