Jaishanker R , Ph D

Dr. R. Jaishanker

Professor and Chairperson, School of Informatics

I am an ecological physicist who seeks to understand terrestrial ecological processes from a physicist’s perspective.

Electromagnetic (light) and mechanical (sound) waves serve as useful means of understanding ecological processes and characterising. In ecological parlance, sound-based studies translate as acoustic ecology. I have integrated hyperspectral remote sensing with vegetation and colour sciences to lay the foundation of ‘floral radiometry’. An important research focus of Floral Radiometry is to decipher the language of colour in nature.

Both the streams of investigations scales from individual to landscape levels and encompasses autonomous sensor-based data collection and analytics.

Research Interest

  • Ecological Informatics [Floral Radiometry, Acoustic Ecology]
  • Earth Observation [Optical Remote Sensing, Land Use Land Cover Dynamics]
  • Sustainable development [Technology Travelators, Conservation Psychology, Social inertia and Sustainability]
  • Conservation Biology [Biological Invasion (terrestrial plants), Sensor network for conservation].
  • Environmental Policy Analytics

Salient Scientific Contributions

  • Introduced the domain – Floral Radiometry by integrating remote sensing and colour science.
  • Pioneered research program and academic exercise in Ecological Informatics in India.
  • Integrated crop simulation model on a cloud platform.
  • Put forth a multi-dimensional retraceable geometric index of biodiversity.
  • Proposed the Soil-Line Technique for Relative Radiometric Normalisation of Optical Remote Sensed Data - (As part of doctoral research).
  • Introduced the parameter mean night temperature as a predictor variable of wheat yield models in India – (As part of doctoral research).

Points to ponder:

  • We do not have a definite answer to the question, why our ancestors abandoned their arboreal habitats. But it can be credited as the first evolutionary blunder, which has today precipitated as global environmental challenges staring at us.
  • Introduction of money qualifies as the second evolutionary blunder (though social). Since then man as a species has lost wealth to become rich.
  • Homo sapiens is perhaps the only species, which gives preference to males over females. This species has polluted the biosphere to a seemingly irrecoverable extent.

Awards/ Fellowships/ Recognitions

  • Faculty Award: IBM for INTElligent Green Revolution (INTEGER) (2020) https://www.research.ibm.com/university/awards/university-awards-recipients.html
  • Wild Tracks award for human-wildlife conflict studies (2019).
  • Selected by Indian National Science Academy and Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, Germany) for the bilateral exchange of scientists (2019).
  • Awarded project COCOSIM under EYR – India2Europe of GÉANT and NKN (2018).
  • Recipient: IBM Global Shared University Research award (2018).
  • Research results cited on the floor of the Upper House of the Indian Parliament (Dec 2017).
  • Invited as an expert to Huangshan Dialogue on UNESCO Designated Places and Sustainable Development by the Chinese Academy of Sciences: (May 2014).
  • UNESCO certificate of appreciation for Ecological Informatics at IIITM-K (June 2012).
  • Visiting faculty: (2010-11 & 2011-12), Faculty of Geomatics, Computer Science and Mathematics, University of Applied Sciences, Stuttgart, Germany.
  • Nominated as Conference Director: Applied Geoinformatics for Environment and Society (AGSE 2012) held at Universiti Teknologi, Johor Bharu, Malaysia.
  • SUN scholarship (Central European University) – 2010.
  • UNESCO post-doctoral fellowship – 2008.
  • International Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) Award – 2006.
  • Was identified by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S Department of Commerce, as Indian Principal Investigator for joint Indo-US research on remote sensing and epidemiology.
    Cleared National Eligibility Test (NET) of Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR): Subject: Soil Science –Soil Physics and Water Conservation – 2002.
  • Recipient of a doctoral research fellowship of Indian Space Research Organization – 1999-2002.

PhD Guidance

Completed

  • Ms Indu.I: Estimation of Biophysical Parameters of Tropical Forest Using Optical
    and LiDAR Remote Sensing Techniques: A Case Study from Western Ghats of India (November 2019).
  • Ms Athira.K Radiometric Characterization of Common Flowers of Kerala, India. (June
    2020)

Ongoing

  • Sajeev .C Rajan: A study on Acoustic Environment in Natural Landscapes in Kerala and its Avian Contributors [January 2017].
  • Ms Asulabha. K.S: Spatial Decision Support System for Biomonitoring of Lakes Using Algae [January 2017].
  • Ms Sincy Verghese: Spatial and Temporal Dynamics of Fish Diversity in Urban Lakes
    [January 2017].
  • Mr Arjun. C. P: Modeling Human-Primate Conflict Using Techno Ecological Parameters in Northern Kerala [ July 2017].
  • Ms Anjaly U. Characterization of Vegetation Dynamics Using Multi-Temporal and Multi-Sensor Remote Sensing Data [December 2018].
  • Mr Vishnu.M Geometric Entropy of Tree Leaves [January 2019].
  • Mr Sooraj.N.P Studies on the Biophysical Parameters and Spatial Distribution of Invasive Plants in Legally Protected area [July 2017]

Consultancy

Program Coordination: UNESCO (July-December 2009).SAP Ref No. 3240209102 Help organise workshop – ROOTS: Repositioning Man- Agriculture link in the Biosphere: Towards Food and Nutritional security.
Quantitative Studies on Erosion of Traditional Knowledge: UNESCO (2013) Contract No.4500211468  Quantitative study to estimate erosion in Traditional Knowledge in four locations, covering eight traditional communities within UNESCO Natural Heritage Site: the Western Ghats, India.
Creeping Threats to UNESCO designated World Heritage Sites – Ecological Effects of Longterm  NTFP Extraction & Modelling Futuristic Invasive Plant Distribution within WHS UNESCO (2014)   Contract No.4500249345 Study to assess effects of long-term extraction of Non- Timber Forest Produce from UNESCO Natural Heritage Site in India.

Professional Associations

  • Member The International Association for Vegetation Science
  • Member: British Ecological Society
  • Life Member: Indian Science Congress Association
  • Member: American Psychological Association (Div 34: Conservation Psychology)
  • Member: Association of International Color (AIC)
  • Member: IUCN Commission on Education and Communication
  • Member: CIE Technical Commission 4-61 [Artificial Lighting and its Impact on the Natural Environment].