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Seven Indian American Early Career Researchers Among Sloan Research Fellows 

Seven Indian American Early Career Researchers Among Sloan Research Fellows 

Staff Writer
  • 128 fellows from the 2021 cohort are drawn from a diverse range of 58 institutions across North America, and receive a two-year, $75,000 fellowship which can be spent to advance the fellow’s research.

Seven Indian Americans are among 128 early career researchers selected to receive a 2021 Sloan Research Fellowship. Awarded annually since 1955, by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the fellowships honor “extraordinary U.S. and Canadian researchers whose creativity, innovation, and research accomplishments make them stand out as the next generation of scientific leaders.”

Indian American Fellows include: Karthish Manthiram, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (chemistry); Rachit Agarwal, Cornell University, Smita Krishnaswamy, Yale University, and Ravi Netravali, University of California, Los Angeles (computer science); Bhaswar B. Bhattacharya, University of Pennsylvania (mathematics); and Rishidev Chaudhuri, University of California, Davis, and Swathi Yadlapalli, University of Michigan (neuroscience).

Fellows from the 2021 cohort are drawn from a diverse range of 58 institutions across North America, “from large public university systems, to Ivy League institutions, to small liberal arts colleges,: according to the foundation website. The fellowship is open to scholars in eight scientific and technical fields—chemistry, computational and evolutionary molecular biology, computer science, Earth system science, economics, mathematics, neuroscience, and physics. Winners receive a two-year, $75,000 fellowship which can be spent to advance the fellow’s research.

Karthish Manthiram is the Theodore T. Miller Career Development Chair, Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT. “I became a chemical engineer because of the elegant way in which the subject describes both molecular-level phenomena and large-scale processes – our intuition spans a vast range of length scales,” he says on his MIT profile. Manthiram’s research interests include electrification and decarbonization of chemical synthesis, catalysis, renewable energy, electrochemistry, electrocatalysis, organic electrosynthesis, and materials chemistry. A postdoctoral scholar at the California Institute of Technology (2015-2016), Manthiram received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 2015 and his B.S., Stanford University in 2010. 

Rachit Agarwal is an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science at Cornell University. He completed his PhD from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his undergraduate from IIT Kanpur. He  received the 2018 SIGCOMM best student paper award, 2016 Google faculty research Award, 2012 Rambus research award, 2010 Wang-Chung research award, and was listed in 2010 List of teachers ranked as excellent. Agarwal’s research interests span distributed systems, operating systems, computer networks, and algorithms.

Smita Krishnaswamy is an associate professor in Genetics and Computer Science at Yale University. She is affiliated with the applied math program, computational biology program, Yale Center for Biomedical Data Science and Yale Cancer Center. Her lab works on the development of machine learning techniques to analyze high dimensional high throughput biomedical data. Her focus is on unsupervised machine learning methods, specifically manifold learning and deep learning techniques for detecting structure and patterns in data. She has developed algorithms for non-linear dimensionality reduction and visualization, learning data geometry, denoising, imputation, inference of multi-granular structure, and inference of feature networks from big data. Her group has applied these techniques to many data types such as single cell RNA-sequencing, mass cytometry, electronic health record, and connectomic data from a variety of systems. Specific application areas include immunology, immunotherapy, cancer, neuroscience, developmental biology and health outcomes. Krishnaswamy has a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Michigan.

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Ravi Netravali is an assistant professor in the Computer Science Department at UCLA. His research interests are broadly in systems and networking, and his recent work has focused on building practical systems to improve the performance and debugging of large-scale, distributed applications for both users and developers. His research has been recognized with a Sloan Research Fellowship, an NSF CAREER Award, a Google Faculty Research Award, an ACM SoCC Best Paper Award, and an IRTF Applied Networking Research Prize. Prior to joining UCLA, he received a PhD from MIT, and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Columbia University. Netravali will be joining Princeton University’s Department of Computer Science.

Bhaswar B. Bhattacharya is an assistant professor in the Department of Statistics at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He received my Ph.D. from the Department of Statistics at Stanford University in 2016, and his Bachelor and Master degrees in Statistics from the Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata. His research interests include nonparametric statistics, combinatorial probability and discrete and computational geometry. Rishidev Chaudhuri is an assistant professor at University of California, Davis, with a joint appointment between the departments of Mathematics and Neurobiology, Physiology & Behavior. His research specializes in cognitive neuroscience, computational neuroscience and systems neuroscience and seeks to build theoretical frameworks and models to understand distributed computation in the brain, and to develop tools to find structure and test theories in neural data. Chaudhuri has a Ph.D. in applied mathematics from Yale University and a BA in physics from Amherst College. 

Swathi Yadlapalli is an assistant professor in the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology at the University of Michigan, Her research focuses on understanding the neural and molecular basis of circadian rhythms, to understand the fundamental processes of circadian systems at different organizational levels, from molecules and cells and large-scale networks to organismal physiology and behavior. Yadlapalli received her PhD from the University of Michigan, MS from Yale University and her B.S. from International Institute of Information Technology, India. 

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