Merging of AI, Life Sciences vital for progress

AI-Life Sciences convergence has become an imperative necessity, according to Padma Bhushan Dr Vijay Bhatkar

Convergence of Artificial Intelligence and life sciences has become an imperative necessity as these are poised to become the harbingers of future engineering discipline that will profoundly impact human life in general and academic disciplines in particular, says an internationally acclaimed expert in super computing.

According to Padma Bhushan Dr Vijay Bhatkar, “Engineering and life sciences must merge together and we may come out with new entities that are going to create a huge impact in life.” Delivering the keynote at the three-day 16th Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB) Scientific Advisory Council (SAC) meeting in Kerala’s Kollam he offered his insights on ‘Use of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Healthcare’.  Dr Bhatkar, who is Chancellor of Nalanda University, said the progress of RGCB is not possible without getting exposed to the new emerging disciplines of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (ML).

No engineering discipline untouched by AI

While learning it, you are not only getting exposed to this, you are actually driving the engineering discipline in many ways. Today, there is no discipline that is not touched by Artificial Intelligence. It has emerged so profoundly that it has made a deep impact on all academic disciplines, Dr Bhatkar, who enjoys the reputation of being the architect of India’s initiative in supercomputing, said.

Poiting out that after Plus Two, the artificial separation across all disciplines is a serious shortcoming in the existing education system, Dr Bhatkar said the new National Education Policy argues for liberal education, which is akin to the education system that prevailed in the ancient Nalanda University.

Liberal education in all universities

Several disciplines were taught in a liberal manner at the Nalanda University by teachers and seers. The education system of that era was admired and acclaimed by many. We will have liberal education in all our universities. Still, I don’t know how it is going to be implemented, but it is our responsibility to do that, he added.

Dr Vijay Bhatkar, who is also a renowned computer scientist, IT leader, and educationalist, said the distinct choice between engineering and life sciences/medical sciences completely separates one’s exposure to biology. Similarly, the biology and life sciences people are not exposed to engineering in a serious way.  Dr Bhatkar called upon the RGCB to look into the emerging disciplines like emotional intelligence and its impact.

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