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Dr. Soumya Swaminathan

Posted on April 22, 2020
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Dr. Soumya Swaminathan


Dr. Soumya Swaminathan was born on 2nd May,1959 in Chennai, India. Soumya Swaminathan is the daughter of “Indian Father of Green Revolution” M.S. Swaminathan and Indian educationalist Mina Swaminathan.


Swaminathan holds M.B.B.S degree from Armed Forces Medical College and M.D from AIIMS, New Delhi. She subsequently held a Postdoctoral Medical Fellowship in Paediatric Pulmonology from Keck School of Medical at the University of Southern California from 1987 to 1989.


Research Fellow (Registrar) in the Dept of Paediatric Respiratory Diseases, University of Leicester, UK: 1989–1990.She worked as an Adjunct Associate Clinical Professor, Dept. of Public Health and Family Medicine at Tufts University of Medicine. Later Soumya Swaminathan joined the National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis in Chennai in 1992 (later became its director). She became the Coordinator of the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases in Geneva – 2009 to 2011.Then she worked as a Secretary to the Government of India for Health Research and Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research from 2015 to 2017and then joined as a deputy director General of  WHO, Oct 2017 to Mar 2019. And now she is a Chief Scientist of WHO.

Awards and Recognition:

  • 1999 Dr. Keya Lahiri Gold Medal for best paper presented, XI National Paediatric Pulmonary Conference
  • 2008 Indian Council of Medical Research, Kshanika Oration Award
  • 2009 Elected Vice-Chair, HIV section, International Union against TB and Lung Diseases
  • 2011 Fellow, Indian Academy of Paediatrics
  • 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award, Indian Association of Applied Microbiologists
  • 2012 Tamil Nadu Science and Technology Award
  • 2012 Fellow, National Academy of Sciences, India
  • 2013 Fellow, Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore
  • 2016 ASTRAZENECA research endowment award, NIPER
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