A national theoretical physics award opens up networking opportunities Dr. Trinanjan Datta said would not otherwise exist.
Datta, whose area of research is theoretical and computational magnetism, has been named a Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics Scholar for the 2021-23 academic years. The institute is located at The University of California Santa Barbara. This distinction will allow him to visit the university three times over the next three years to collaborate and share research with top scientists in his field.
This is the second time he’s received the honor. Ten years ago, he was named a Kavli Scholar and visited the institute three times. Through this experience, he made connections around the world. He said this opportunity is especially valuable to institutions that do not have a graduate program in the field of theoretical physics, as a way to maintain an international standard of research.
“To me, it opens up a world of collaborative networking opportunities that didn’t exist. Like, in the past one, it allowed me to go collaborate with people in Japan. It allowed me to extend my network of collaborators to other people in the U.S.” he said, adding that he now also has collaborators in China and Switzerland.
The Kavli Institute’s structure encourages attendees to frequently interact. Datta said he enjoyed being able to randomly walk into a talk on a topic of interest, ask questions and receive a sounding board for his ideas.
“Here, you don’t need to be collaborating with (the other scientists). You can just talk to anybody in the corridor — there’s a chalkboard, and you can start discussing physics.”