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Darsh T. Wasan Lectureship Series

The Darsh T. Wasan Lecture was established in 2008 in honor of IIT Motorola Chair and Vice President of International Affair Darsh T. Wasan's extraordinary contributions to the university over the last forty-five years. It seeks to bring some of the best and brightest internationally-known leaders to speak on cutting-edge topics of global issues. The lectureship series is made possible by donations from former students of Dr. Wasan, friends, and faculty.


Dr. Darsh Wasan received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois in Chemical Engineering in 1960 and his Ph.D. from University of California- Berkley in 1965. He began his career at IIT in 1964 shortly after his graduation from Berkley, gaining full professorship in 1970.

Over the last forty-four years at IIT, he has held virtually every academic and administrative post, including department chairman, dean of engineering, vice president for research and technology, vice president for academic affairs and provost at the university.

Over the span of his career, Dr. Wasan co-authored over 400 publications, co-authored a textbook with Edwards and Brenner titled Interfacial Transport Processes and Rheology, supervised and mentored 60 doctoral students, 55 M.S. students, and 15 postdoctoral fellows.

He also is the recipient of numerous awards for teaching, research, and service, including the American Chemical Society National Award in Colloid and Surface Chemistry and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers Alpha Chi Sigma Award for Fundamental and Applied Research in Chemical Engineering, the American Society for Engineering Education Chemical Engineering Division Lectureship Award, the Western Electric Fund Award for excellence in instruction of engineering students, and the IIT Excellence in Teaching Award.

In addition to these awards, Dr. Wasan was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, one of the highest honors bestowed upon engineers in the United States, and to the Indian National Academy of Engineering.

Currently, he serves as the Distinguished Motorola Chair Professor of Chemical Engineering and Vice President of International Affairs at IIT and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Colloid and Interface Science. Dr. Wasan married his wife Usha on August 21, 1966. They have two sons, Ajay and Kern.

Previous Wasan Lecturers


"The Story of Alexa: AI for Daily Convenience"

Rohit Prasad
Vice President and Head Scientist, Amazon Alexa


"Global Climate Change and U.S. Interests: What we know. What we expect. What should we do"

John P. Holdren
Science Advisor and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy under US President Barack Obama


"Technology, Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Social Change"

Sam Pitroda
Chairman of the Pitroda Group


"Redesign Economics to Redesign the World"

Dr. Muhammad Yunus
Chairman of the Yunus Center, Bangladesh


"Biomaterials and Biotechnology: Controlled Drug Delivery Systems and Tissue Engineering"

Dr. Robert Langer
Institute Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"Harnessing Knowledge to Meet the Challenge of Climate Change"

Dr. Rajendra Kumar Pachauri
Chair, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
Director General of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute)


"Challenges and Opportunities for Global Science"

Dr. Subra Suresh
President, Carnegie Mellon University
Former Director, National Science Foundation


"International Education Today"

Alice P. Gast
President, Lehigh University

"A Tale for Our Times: Something for Everyone about Climate Change and the Reasons for Climate Gridlock"
Susan Solomon, Ph.D. (CHEM '77)
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

“Membrane Technology for a Thirsty Century - from an Industrial Perspective of Energy, Sustainability, and Globalization”
Norman N. Li, President, NL Chemical Technology, Inc.

"Innovation in Global Healthcare, Education and the Arts"
David A. Edwards (Ph.D. ChE '87), Gordon McKay Professor of the Practice of Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University