Prof. M. D. Srinivas

MD SrinivasChairman, Centre for Policy Studies,  6, Baliah Avenue, Luz, Mylapore, Chennai. 
 

 
Education and Employment 
 
B.Sc. (Honours) Physics, Bangalore University (1969) M.Sc. Physics, Bangalore University (1971) Ph.D. in Physics from University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA (1976) 1976-85: Lecturer, Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Madras 1985-91: Reader, Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Madras 1991-96: Professor, Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Madras Since 1996: Senior Fellow, Centre for Policy Studies, Chennai Honorary Positions Held Since 1990: Founder Chairman, Centre for Policy Studies, Chennai 1992-1998: Member, Advisory Board on History of Science, Indian National Science Academy 1998-2000: Member, Indian National Commission for History of Science, Indian National Science Academy 1998-2004: Vice Chairman, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla 1999-2002: Member, Central Sanskrit Board Since 2006: Chairman, MOP Vaishnav College for Women, Chennai Since 2013: Member, Indian National Commission for History of Science, Indian National Science Academy
 
Areas of Specialization
  • Theoretical Physics (Conceptual and Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics)
  • History and Philosophy of Science (Scientific and Technological Tradition of India: Methodology of Indian Tradition of Science, Study of Source Texts of Indian Mathematics and Astronomy)
  • Indian Society, Economy and Polity

Talk of the abstract
 
INDIAN TRADITION OF SCIENCE – AN INTRODUCTORY OVERVIEW 

We shall present an introductory overview of development of science in India from ancient times to the modern period. We shall focus mainly on the disciplines of Mathematics and Astronomy, and only briefly touch upon other important disciplines such as Linguistics and Medicine. In all these disciplines, a high level of systematization was achieved at a fairly early stage and this was followed by significant developments all through the classical and the medieval periods.  The Indian contributions have also had major impact on the development of sciences in other civilization areas.

Apart from highlighting such achievements, we shall also briefly discuss the foundational methodology of Indian sciences. Traditionally, such issues have been dealt with in the detailed bhashyas or commentaries, which continued to be written till recent times and played a vital role in the traditional scheme of learning.  Here, we shall emphasize the pragmatic and open-ended approach to scientific theorization as expounded in the canonical scientific texts of India, which is strikingly different from the ideal of absolutely true universal laws which has dominated the Greco-European scientific tradition.


Readings