Bill Thies, Senior Researcher at Microsoft Research India was today named as a MacArthur Fellow. The MacArthur Fellows Program awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. The MacArthur Fellowship is a “no strings attached” award in support of people, not projects. Each fellowship comes with a stipend of $625,000 to the recipient, paid out in equal quarterly installments over five years.
“While our communities, our nation, and our world face both historic and emerging challenges, these 23 extraordinary individuals give us ample reason for hope. They are breaking new ground in areas of public concern, in the arts, and in the sciences, often in unexpected ways. Their creativity, dedication, and impact inspire us all,” said MacArthur Foundation President Julia Stasch.
About Bill Thies’ work,
Bill Thies is a computer scientist creating communication and digital technologies to advance the social and economic well-being of low-income communities in the developing world. A leader in the field of Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D), Thies combines technical expertise in several subfields of computer science with a deep understanding of the real-world constraints and needs of the communities in rural India he hopes to reach. He overcomes challenges such as stark financial constraints, limited access to internet services, and low levels of literacy by devising interfaces between basic mobile phones, which are relatively affordable and widely used, and modern networks and applications.
Read more about the work he is doing here and watch the video above to know more.