Second SSC MEETING - 15th October 2012

The second meeting of the Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) was held at the Prithvi Bhavan, ESSO/Ministry of Earth Sciences, on 15th October 2012 under the co-chairmanship of Dr Shailesh Nayak, Secretary MoEs and Prof J. Srinivasan, IISc Bangalore.

The members and special invitees attended the SSC meeting:

  • Remarks by the Secretary

    At the outset, Secretary MoES welcomed the members and special invitees for the SSC meeting. He expressed satisfaction on the progress achieved so far and response of the international research community in submitting research proposals under the monsoon mission. Already two C-DAC projects have been approved for the funding. The first year budget for supporting research proposal was released from ESSO/MoES to IITM.
    He desired that the monsoon mission proposals may be evaluated and classified into the following 3 categories:

    • Proposals highly relevant to the monsoon mission with deliverables in stipulated time frame.
    • Proposals that are important for monsoon research but may be or may not be relevant to the monsoon mission.
    • Proposals which are not important and not relevant to the monsoon mission.
    He further remarked that all SRMC members may participate in the evaluation of research proposals by giving some grading (marks) for the research proposals submitted under the monsoon mission.

  • Remarks by Prof J Srinivasan

    Prof J Srinivasan remarked that IITM may organize a brainstorm meeting on the CFS model for Indian scientists to discuss its capability. He further remarked that evaluation of the research proposals should be done with utmost care as ESSO/MoES is funding foreign scientists for the first time.

  • Presentation by Dr BN Goswami on Action taken

    Dr BN Goswami, the monsoon mission Director informed that the first draft of Science plan of the Monsoon Mission has been prepared and inputs from NCMRWF are awaited. He informed that the Science Plan will be ready by the end of November, 2012.
    Regarding sharing data under the Monsoon Mission, he informed that this is a policy matter and was discussed in the ESSO Council meeting recently. Data on ‘developmental activity’ will be made public only when the development is complete. Data generated on the Operational version of the model will be made public after one year of generation of the data and initial results published. However, the required data will be shared with PIs of the projects which are approved for funding under the Monsoon Mission. Similarly, hindcast data of CFS model (operational version) will be shared with IMD for assessing the skill of seasonal forecasts.

  • The SRMC recommendations

    The SRMC meeting was held on 12 September at IITM Pune to discuss the project proposals received under the Monsoon Mission. Prof D.R. Sikka, the chairman of SRMC has discussed the SRMC recommendations. He informed that in total 28 project proposals were received for evaluations. Out of the 28 proposals, the committee did not find 3 proposals suitable for funding under the monsoon mission, 3 proposals were recommended for revision, 14 proposals were recommended for funding. One proposal by Prof Sumant Nigam was withdrawn by him after the SRMC meeting. Remaining 7 proposals are deferred for the next meeting.

    The SSC then discussed each of the 21 proposals (excluding 7 proposals deferred for next meeting) in detail. After deliberations, the SSC approved the recommendation of the SRMC to support the 14 proposals as given in the Table-1, but with the following conditions/ modifications.

  • Other points

    • For all the project proposals, the Co-PIs from the ESSO institutions may be excluded. Instead, the PI may identify a nodal ESSO institution. The Director/Head of the nodal institution may then nominate a scientist (with relevant experience/interest) to act as a coordinator for facilitating research for the PI.
    • MoES institutions however may involve a young scientist in the project so that he/she can be trained. The expenses for his/her involvement will be met from the budget of the Monsoon Mission.
    • For all the project proposals recommended for revision of objectives/methodology etc, the PIs should be requested to revise the proposal document and submit to IITM
    • A copy of the final version of all the project proposals approved for funding may be sent to the project office at ESSO/MoES. Similarly, a copy of the sanction letter issued to PIs should be sent to the ESSO for records. The details of proposals are given in Table-1. The required funds for the first year may be released to the concerned PI.