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Endowed Chairs at IIT Madras: A New Classification

Dear Alumnus/ Alumna,

Chair Professorships provide a mechanism for IITs to bring in exceptional research and talent that we are not able to recruit on a full-time basis. They can provide that infusion, that disruption that can enable institutions on the cusp of greatness to get there so much sooner. While IIT Madras has a program in place for Visiting Chairs, we have recently also introduced a provision for outstanding IITM faculty to be elevated to Chairs as well. So, we now have four categories of Chairs identified under this scheme:

 

I. (Named) Distinguished Chair: (e.g., the recently-launched Prof. Mahabala Chair, funded by Kris Gopalakrishnan; to be occupied by Dr. Partha Mitra, CSHL, NY).
a. Intended to host world’s leading researchers in specific fields, visits of 3-5 years
b. Salary & benefits provided on globally-competitive basis
c. Campus housing to be provided
d. May be endowed with an initial corpus of Rs. 10 crores ($ 1,600,000)
II. (Named) Visiting Chair: (e.g., Chair in Biotechnology sponsored the Mehta Family Foundation, Houston; occupied by Prof. Ashok Venkitaraman, Cambridge Univ.)
a. Intended for visits of 1-3 years by leaders in academia, industry and research
b. Salary & benefits on par with IITM faculty
c. Campus housing to be provided
d. May be endowed with an initial corpus of Rs. 300 lakhs ($ 600,000).
III. (Named) Adjunct Chair: (e.g., the Chevron Chair in Chemical Engineering, facilitated by our Distinguished Alum, Dr. Ashok Krishna).
a. Intended for short-term visits (less than one year) by leaders in academia, industry and research
b. Honorarium (covering travel & living expenses) to be provided based on services offered
c. Campus accommodations to be provided
d. May be endowed with an initial corpus of Rs. 50-250 lakhs ($ 100,000-500,000)
IV. (Named) Institute Chair: (the first one was sponsored in Biomedical Engineering by our alum, Dr. Prakash Keshaviah)
a. Intended for senior IIT Madras Professors to reward exceptional performance
b. Selected faculty will be identified as “(Named) Institute Chair” until retirement, but financial benefits will be provided for an initial period
c. May be endowed with an initial corpus of Rs. 50 lakhs ($ 100,000)

If you’re looking to make a year-end gift, these may be good options for you to consider. These Chairs will play a significant role in positioning your alma mater as a global leader in research.