New Delhi, July 1.
The Sonipat (Haryana)-based Ashoka University hosted a ‘Shaping Organisations of the Future’, a virtual conference on June 27. The conference was addressed by business, finance and industry leaders including Pramod Bhasin, Genpact; Amitabh Chaudhry, Axis Bank; Deep Kalra, MakeMyTrip, and Ashish Dhawan, Ashoka University. The conference was attended by over 2,000 corporate leaders, professionals, students and a variety of audiences in 26 countries. “The virtual conference brought human resource development communities, corporate leaders, global thinkers and stakeholders to discuss the future of work practices including work anytime, anywhere, virtual internships, redesigning of workplaces and developing skills such as critical writing, analytical thinking, effective communication and social responsibility that will be essential in the post Covid-19 era,” says an Ashoka University spokesperson. A recording of the conference can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=fepsECie4GM
EIF training initiative
Mumbai, June 22. EdIndia Foundation (EIF, estb.2019), an edtech non-profit supported by the Mumbai-based Sterlite Power — a power transmission and solutions company — hosted a two-day online training workshop for 8,000 teachers on June 17-18 in partnership with the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC). The workshop was designed to help teachers of TMC’s 850 schools adapt to new digital technologies and ensure learning continuity in the post Covid-19 era.
“All schools have been disrupted by the pandemic. Therefore, it is imperative for all stakeholders to work together for our children’s education and well-being. The workshops encourage teachers to embrace technology, nurture child well-being and prepare for post Covid-19 challenges and innovations,” says Sonakshi Agarwal, founder, EIF.
Over the past two years, EdIndia Foundation has impacted 30,000 teachers and 500,000 students.
MBD Group Scholarships
New Delhi, July 10. The Delhi-based MBD Group of companies engaged in the businesses of publishing textbooks, eco-friendly notebooks, e-learning apps and online skill development programmes, paper manufacture, ICT infrastructure, hospitality, real estate and mall development and management in India, the UK, South Africa and Sri Lanka, disbursed 100 scholarships to mark the 75th birth anniversary of MBD Group founder Ashok Kumar Malhotra.
“Malhotra Ji was a visionary who always believed in making a difference in the lives of people by bringing positive changes. Keeping in mind the welfare of MBDians during the pandemic, medical insurance has been almost doubled for them. We are also implementing a work-from-home strategy to safeguard our workforce during this pandemic,” said Smt. Satish Bala Malhotra, chairperson MBD Group, speaking on the occasion.
IB 2020 results
Mumbai, July 7. The Geneva/Haguebased International Baccalaureate exam board announced the IB Diploma Programme and Career-related Programme results on July 6. 174,355 students around the world have been awarded certification. The number of students who received their results in India this year is 4,662, a 9.5 percent increase over last year (4,217).
“An IB education has always been about more than results and, this year, students have had to deal with a level of global disruption that has never been experienced before,” says Dr. Siva Kumari, director-general at International Baccalaureate.
Following cancellation of the May 2020 examinations due to the Covid-19 pandemic, IB made a commitment that its students would receive their results in July. To meet this deadline, IB schools around the world were asked to upload all internal assessment work and predicted grades. This meant that every enrolled DP and CP student who would have taken the May 2020 examinations and has completed all elements of the programme’s core elements has been issued with a course certificate which reflects her academic capability.
Over 400 higher education institutions in 50 countries have confirmed that IB 2020 results are adequate for admissions this year.
Covid testing short cut
New Delhi, July 9. The Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi (IIIT-D) has developed a computational AI (artificial intelligence) model for drug repositioning in the treatment of Covid-19. “Essentially, this means that instead of manually going through every available drug and checking its effectiveness against Covid-19 — which is a painfully long process — we can now rely on AI to speed things up and find us the drugs which have the highest probability of success against the disease,” says an IIIT-D spokesperson.
This AI model that could prove to be indispensable in the battle against the pandemic is the outcome of collaboration between IIIT-D, IPGMER, Kolkata and INRIA, Saclay, Paris (France). “In simple terms, our AI model computes the similarity between the chemical structures of drugs and the similarity between the genomic structures of existing viruses and the novel coronavirus. The model researches the historical information about the efficacy of drugs on different viruses and selects drugs — based on chemical structure — that have been successful in treating viruses that have a genomic structure close to that of the novel coronavirus,” explains the spokesperson.