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Ashoka Bulletin
Ashoka University’s Biology Researcher awarded the prestigious INSA Young Scientists Award 2021
The award, considered to be the highest recognition of its stature in the field of sciences in India, is a testament to Ashoka’s efforts in creating a leading cutting-edge research university.
Sudipta Tung, a promising Biology researcher at Ashoka University and a DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance Fellow has been awarded the prestigious Indian National Science Academy Young Scientists Award 2021
 
Sudipta is the Principal Investigator of Integrative Genetics and Evolution Laboratory (IGEL), where he investigates how different environmental factors interact with genetic makeup of an organism to shape individual’s diverse observable traits (such as life-history, behavioural, physiological etc.), and differential vulnerability to diseases. He also studies the causes and consequences of fluctuations in population abundance patterns, particularly in small extinction-prone populations. 
 
Sharing his thoughts on Sudipta’s achievement, L S Shashidhara, Dean of Research and Professor of Biology said,
 
“INSA Young Scientist Award is meant to identify young achievers, who have the potential to lead an illustrious research career. Subsequent to the work for which he is awarded this prize, Sudipta is already showing the signs of a mature scientist planning experiments that are very innovative and based on sound hypotheses. I am confident that Sudipta will bring more laurels to Ashoka.” 
 
The INSA Young Scientists Award is considered to be the highest recognition of promise, creativity and excellence in a young scientist, and is made annually to those distinguished for these attributes as evidenced by their research work carried out in India. Each awardee is presented with a medal, a certificate and honorarium of INR 1 lac.  
 
Commenting on Sudipta’s achievement and what it means for Ashoka, Alok Bhattacharya, Head of the Department, and Professor of Biology said,
 
“This award is a recognition for the research that Sudipta has already done and faith that the scientific peer group of the country has on his future potential as an important contributor to the development of science. The Department of Biology is proud of his achievement and will support him for his future scientific endeavours.”
 
Sudipta has carried out original and creative work on population stability and evolution of dispersal. Using laboratory populations of Drosophila melanogaster, he has uncovered the behavioural, physiological and metabolic correlates of dispersal evolution. He has also investigated the efficacy of various control methods in stabilizing the dynamics of real biological populations. He combines theory and classical assays of experimental evolution with modern physiological and metabolomics techniques, which is a very rare combination in the field. 
 
Prior to joining Ashoka, he was working as a B4 postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University on dissecting out the genetic basis of differential propensity of whole-genome duplication in budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. 
 
Before joining Harvard, Sudipta conducted extensive theoretical and empirical investigation in the field of experimental evolution and population dynamics using Drosophila melanogaster as model organism during his Ph.D. at Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER)-Pune.
 
Sudipta is honoured to have received this distinguished recognition and is excited to continue his remarkable work. 
“This is a rather special moment for me, and the credits primarily go to all my teachers and mentors. The timing of this award could not be better. Presently, while I am setting up my research group at Ashoka, this award provides an enormous encouragement in this new journey as an independent researcher. It also highlights the excellent research opportunities present within India, and at the same time sets a high standard for me to teach and mentor the future generations of students.” - Sudipta Tung
Ashoka is a journey towards creating a leading multidisciplinary research university with a strong focus on teaching and learning, unparalleled in both India and Asia. The most distinctive feature of the Universitiy’s approach to science and research is the amalgamation of interdisciplinarity and multidisciplinarity which is extremely powerful, and perhaps unprecedented in India. 
 
The University congratulates Sudipta on this monumental achievement!