Top 10 Data Scientists In India — 2018

Analytics India Magazine brings you the annual list of the top data scientists in India, for the fourth year in a row. We have been identifying the ingenious minds in the world of data science and analytics who are also driving the innovations across various industries in India. From building analytics team to bringing newer processes in the working, the data scientists listed here have been instrumental in changing the face of the organisation.

We have considered data scientists working with an organisation or independently, irrespective of size and nature of work.

Here’s the list of top 10 data scientists, to draw some inspiration and motivation from.

(The names are listed in an alphabetical order)

Read our previous list:

2017 | 2016 | 2015

Anand Srinivasan

Current Role & Responsibilities: Anand is the founder and CEO of DSquare Solutions, a boutique analytics solutions startup based in Bengaluru. He has been a career analytics professional with over 20 years of experience in Operations Research, Analytics and mathematical modelling.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He started his career in the Aviation industry with Sabre, where he worked on cutting-edge solutions for some of the most complicated mathematical problems including revenue management, fleet optimisation, staff rostering and cargo revenue management, among others. In fact, he claims to be one of the few people that carried the designation of “Data Scientist” way back in the late 90s before the title became famous.

Significant Achievements: Since Sabre, Anand has also spent significant time tackling data science challenges in various verticals like retail, FMCG, telecom, banking and business operations across companies like Dell, CISCO, Standard Chartered Bank, Pepsico and Airtel, through his startup. He has co-authored a book Business Analytics – A Practitioner’s Guide which lays down a framework for Decision Analytics powered by data sciences.

His mantra for success is to not focus on the tools or techniques, but rather approach the problem from the decisionmaker’s perspective. “The Decision is bigger than the Data” is his motto.

Education: He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from IIT Madras and a Masters Degree in Operations Research from Purdue University.

Anurag Verma

Current Role & Responsibilities: Verma is the CEO and co-founder at MathLogic Consulting Services. His current focus is on leveraging reinforcement learning and temporal CNN for real-world problems. Verma still loves to write codes and has a broad experience with data processing tools/ languages including Scala, python, Spark, R, SAS. He can speak passionately about open source technologies platforms as well as machine learning algorithms.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He has over 22 years of experience in analytics and consulting across North America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia. He specialises in using cutting-edge data science tools and techniques for real-world problems. Before starting MathLogic he had worked with Accenture, American Express, Genpact and PwC.

Significant Achievements: He is experienced in building and leading specialised data science teams in the companies. He has designed and delivered solutions around fraud, credit risk, sales and marketing as well as operational efficiencies with embedded machine learning and deep learning algorithms.

Education: Anurag holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from IIM Calcutta and a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from IIT Kanpur.

Chiranjiv Roy

Current Role & Responsibilities: Dr. Chiranjiv Roy heads the Data Science & Artificial Intelligence as Vice President, Nissan Digital. He manages various heads of verticals such as data science, artificial intelligence research and products development, data engineering and big data.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He has 17+ years of experience in leading R&D – Manufacturing and Automotive MNCs such as Mercedes Benz R&D India, Hewlett Packard R&D, General Motors and BMW. As a part of the Leadership Team for Nissan Digital (fully owned subsidiary of Nissan Motor Corporation), he holds the position of Head of Data Science with practices as Decision Sciences, Advanced Analytics, Artificial Intelligence Products and Big Data Engineering as verticals to support the journey to drive Nissan’s aspirations in Digital Transformation by leveraging data to enable faster & smarter business decisions also envision intelligence in products and services.

Significant Achievements: Dr. Roy has more than 18 patents filed and 2 granted on usage of Data Science to solve real world Automotive and Manufacturing problems by developing or enhancing products and gain efficiencies. He has held multiple Industrial Track and Workshop Chair positions, member of Analytics Society of India, and has given invited talks and keynote speeches in multiple conferences including Cypher 2018, DataHacks 2017 and FedCSIS IEEE 2015.

Education: He holds an Undergraduate and Master’s degree in Statistics and a PhD in Computer Science.

Goda Ramkumar

Current Role & Responsibilities: She is the Principal data scientist at Ola. In her current role, she leads the machine learning and optimisation algorithms behind ride pricing, matching and supply shaping at Ola Cabs.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: Prior to joining Ola, she worked with operations research group at Sabre Travel Technologies for 10 years. At Sabre, she worked on a variety of problems in airline pricing and revenue management with airlines from 10+ countries across the world. She built a team of motivated researchers and developers who designed and developed end-to-end decision support systems for complex business challenges of airline spanning inventory management, ancillary revenue management and cargo revenue management.

Significant Achievements: She is focused on product innovation and expanding the role of data science in driving business value. She has co-authored publications in industry journals such as the Journal of Revenue and Pricing Management and international conferences. She firmly believes in the importance of system thinking and working closely with business and product stakeholders for productive data science. She regularly offers training programs, workshops and guest speaker sessions at academic institutes and industry conferences on practical data science applied to industries.

Education: She holds an Undergraduate and Master’s degree from IIT Madras.

Joydeep Dam

Current Role & Responsibilities: Dam currently heads AI Labs for BRIDGEi2i, a unit that focuses on innovation in machine learning and artificial intelligence. With a team of some of the best minds in the business, he leads efforts in developing BRIDGEi2i’s proprietary analytical algorithms and AI-powered accelerators. In his current role, Dam and his team are working on utilising some of the cutting-edge tools and techniques to develop AI solutions that will be applicable to problems faced by enterprises. He is leading efforts towards making more adaptive recommendations, filtering signals from algorithm powered conversations, dynamic multi-dimensional anomaly detection, self-determined entity graphs among other techniques that will power platforms for AI absorption in enterprises.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He has over 16 combined years of experience in the field of analytics, algorithm development, and quantitative disciplines. Prior to this, he has held various key positions in multiple different organisations, which primarily included different stints in a number of global banks that included Bank of America, Credit Suisse and Royal Bank of Scotland. Joydeep has a keen interest in emerging areas that have the potential to contribute to the field of analytics significantly in the future.

Significant Achievements: He was instrumental in setting up a number of different quantitative risk management groups in the banks that he has worked and led diverse groups of risk management quants, developing quantitative solutions for risk management. He has been focused on incorporating expertise from a broad range of disciplines by exploiting their commonalities to create deeper and more relevant solutions for business problems.

Education: He is an alumnus from Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), Calcutta.

Mathangi Sri

Current Role & Responsibilities: She currently leads the data sciences team at Phonepe. Having worked with various stakeholders in getting data science solutions adopted, she has the opportunity to work with senior executives, founders and CXOs. She has worked extensively with the ‘non-tech’ business stakeholders such as sales, marketing, customer care executives to adopt data-driven recommendations

Analytics & Data Science Journey: With over 15 years of experience, she has built and deployed large-scale data science solutions and has built data science teams in many places that she has worked for, from the ground up. Prior to this, she was a part of innovations and research team at Citi.

Significant Achievements: She has 14 global grants in the area of applying data sciences to service and has presented prestigious conferences including Grace Hopper conference. With a proven track record in building world-class data sciences solutions and team, she has built data science teams in large organisations and startups. She has deployed real-time modelling in the areas of indoor positioning, recommendation engines, credit risk models and chatbots. She also contributed to academia as guest faculty in institutes such as NIT Trichy, IIM Kashipur, Praxis.

Education: She has an MBA from Department of Management Studies, NIT Trichy

Saurabh Awasthi

Current Role & Responsibilities: Awasthi is currently with Cigna TTK Health Insurance and has been instrumental in bringing the cultural change across the organisation as far as data-driven decision making is concerned. He serves as the head of analytics at the company.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He is a business and analytics leader with over 10 years of experience of working with senior executives in defining data-driven strategy, providing thought leadership and leading large multi-cultural engagements to implement analytics solutions to realise the required business benefits. He holds expertise in suggesting efficiency and effectiveness related improvements in areas including CRM, pricing & promotions, product development, customer loyalty, and underwriting & claims management using industry knowledge and leveraging advanced analytic techniques. His experience primarily consists of providing business solutions across functions in retail and insurance sector.

Significant Achievements: Awasthi has been quite passionate about the inculcation of analytics and technology into insurance —from product design to customer acquisition, underwriting, customer experience, claims management and fraud handling. He believes that data science is an art which is most effective when applied with the right business understanding. Data can definitely bring in transformational change only when captured and used with the business objective in mind.

Education: He is an IIT Roorkee graduate.

Subarna Roy

Current Role & Responsibilities: She is currently the lead data scientist in a large public sector program for IBM India. In the current role, she is responsible for the design, delivery and deployment of cutting-edge analytics solutions for policy formulation and fraud identification. As a senior managing consultant in IBM, she exhibited technical leadership in winning deals in advanced analytics space.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: She has over 14 years of experience in guiding clients in their end-to-end analytics journey in various domains like banking, retail and CPG. She has versatile experience in developing methodologies and technology for analytical models on credit risk, fraud management, regulatory risk, opportunity conversion, trade-promotion optimisation, debt forecasting, and social network analysis. Prior to IBM, Subarna has worked for HSBC, TCS and ANZ Bank.

Significant achievements: In IBM, she developed innovative quantitative techniques to deploy predictive maintenance platform for a leading mining equipment manufacturer, with an outcome of 25% reduction in equipment downtime. She is an expert in unsupervised learning and deep-learning auto-encoders.

Education: Subarna holds a PhD in applications of econometrics and game-theory from Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research (IGIDR). She has also published multiple papers in top international journals and co-authored several white papers.

Vikas Behrani

Current Role & Responsibilities: Dr Vikas Behrani is the Principal data scientist at Genpact.  specialised in machine learning, Natural Language Processing and deep learning, leading a team of experts in NLP/ML at Genpact Analytics. At Genpact, he leads and champions the cause of data science within organisation and clients with a focus on providing business value through innovation. He firmly believes in learning every day and is an avid reader. Currently, his research is focused on developing deep learning models for natural language understanding.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: He has over 15 years of experience in statistical modelling, machine learning and deep learning in various industries such as semiconductors, manufacturing, CPG, healthcare and life sciences. He started his data journey while working on Laser Spectroscopy at Georgia Tech to automate the data collection and analysis of large amount of data by interfacing equipment with modelling tools. His past research at Intel Corporation includes equipment failure predictive analysis in semiconductor industry using IoT devices and real-time modelling of the manufacturing process for optimising processor yields.

Significant Achievements: He holds 15+ international conference and journal publications, and one US Patent under his name. He has been recognised with various awards at Intel for his contribution to the development of efficient operations through data science.

Education: He has a PhD from Georgia Institute of Technology, an MBA from Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, and BTech from Indian Institute of Technology, BHU.

Vivek Prabhakar Vaidya

Current Role & Responsibilities: He is the Senior Principal scientist at Symphony AI. In his current role, Vaidya drives technologies to better predict, understand and treat cancer. He is also instrumental in engaging on the venture capital side at Symphony AI. He is passionate about using AI to fight disease and improve human health. He is currently leading a team in building a best-in-class computer-aided detection system to unlock the potential of Automated Breast Ultrasound which provides radiation-free breast cancer screening while reducing cost and increasing global access to this crucial technology.

Analytics & Data Science Journey: In his 15 years in the industry he has worked on various projects such as leading a team in building a deep learning accelerator platform to democratise AI in GE. This platform was deployed to 10 global teams. He worked on unlocking the power of general-purpose GPU in its early days to provide brain surgeons with ‘X-Ray’ vision — the ability to see through patients as they carefully plan the right route to treat cancer while minimising invasive procedures and optimising patient care. This technology was further leveraged to see into jet engines for non-invasive inspection.

Significant achievements: He has over 20 filed patents on technologies such as interactive representation transfer of deeply learned ontologies, MRI scanner automation, distributed solutions for deep learning and automating whole body spine imaging. He has developed a technology to analyse 600,000 Indian villages for needs & opportunities in the areas of healthcare, water and energy. He is also collaborating with IIIT-Hyderabad to leverage Gaze tracking to learn how expert physicians see and ‘transfer’ that information to AI algorithms. He also has over 30 publications on AI technologies and applications published at international conferences such as NIPS, MICCAI, and IPMI.

Education: He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from Washington State University.

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Bhasker Gupta
Bhasker is a techie turned media entrepreneur. Bhasker started AIM in 2012, out of a desire to speak about emerging technologies and their commercial, social and cultural impact. Earlier, Bhasker worked as Vice President at Goldman Sachs. He is a B.Tech from the Indian Institute of Technology, Varanasi and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow.

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