Dr. Raju Roychowdhury

Dr. Raju Roychowdhury

Associate Professor

Profile Summary

Dr. Roychowdhury is recognised as one of the leading experts working on emergent gravity, noncommutative geometry and symplectic techniques in mathematical physics. After completing his undergraduate studies from the University of Calcutta (2003) and subsequently a master’s degree from IIT Kanpur (2005), he went on to receive his M. Phil from TIFR, Mumbai and doctorate in theoretical physics from University of Napoli Federico II (2011) in Italy. Soon after he worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the SINP Kolkata before moving to Korea to join a research associate position first at the Centre for Quantum Spacetime in Seoul followed by a research scientist position at the Seoul National University during 2011-2013. This was followed by a brief stint at Shanghai Jiao Tong University during 2013-2014 before he joined University of Sao Paulo as a postdoc with a prestigious FAPESP fellowship (2014 - 2017). In the following years (2017-2021) he held several academic positions in various universities and institutions in Brazil. Before joining UPES he taught, for a couple of years, UG and PG courses of Physics at Dayalbagh Educational Institute (DEI) in Agra. He also held a long-term visiting researcher position at the department of Mathematical Physics at IFUSP. Dr. Roychowdhury has more than a decade long experience in the areas of theoretical high energy physics with a focus on Gauge Theory, Gravity, and Geometry.

Work Experience

1. Assistant Professor, Department of Physics and Computer Science, DEI, Agra, India (2022-2023)

2. PNPD/CAPES Fellow, IMC-UNIFEI, Brazil, April 2019 - March 2022

3. Visiting Researcher, IFUSP, Brazil, September 2017 - November 2021

4. Visiting Scientist, UFPR, Brazil, September 2017 - March 2019

5. FAPESP Postdoctoral Fellow, IFUSP, Brazil, April 2014 - August 2017

6. VASP Long Term Academic Visitor, SN Bose Institute, Kolkata, India, January 2014 - March 2014

7. Research Scientist, SJTU, Shanghai, China, September 2013 - March 2014

8. Research Fellow, SNU, Seoul, Korea, December 2012 - August 2013

9. Academic Visitor, Albert Einstein Institute, Potsdam, Germany, July 2012

10. Research Associate, CQUeST, Sogang University, Korea, September 2011 - November 2012

11. Postdoctoral Fellow, SINP, Kolkata, India, March 2011 - August 2011

12. Academic Visitor, IAS Princeton, USA, July 2010

Research Interests

Dr. Roychowdhury conducts research in mathematical physics, less conventional “physical mathematics” would be even a better wording. Physics often advances when crisp mathematical structures are uncovered in a framework developed to describe observed phenomena. For example, in quantum gravity there is a vast discrepancy between the current calculational difficulty in making predictions for experiments and the simple, elegant mathematical form of the result. The emergent gravity program seeks to explain and exploit this surprising simplicity by reformulating the basic mathematical tools used to make predictions about large scale background independent structure of spacetime. During past few years, Roychowdhury started developing the formalism of emergent gravity which naturally admits a generalized geometric structure and hence is very similar to the Double Field Theory formalism that was recently invoked by Hull and Zwiebach, in spirit. The research proposal that he is planning to undertake at UPES encompasses various arenas of physics and mathematics namely emergent theory of gravity, duality, diffeomorphism, noncommutative geometry, category theory, differential geometry of bundle gerbes, cohomology theory and is aimed at studying the interplay between Gerbes, topological T-duality and automorphisms of Emergent gravity. The goal of the program is to find a topological T-dual avatar of this gravity theory. His other research interests are integrable systems, holographic methods in condensed matter physics, Extremal Black Holes in Supergravity and Attractor Mechanism, Kahler Einstein metrics, Seiberg-Witten theory and SYZ Mirror symmetry, Symplectic to multisymplectic generalization, Generalized Darboux formalism and Fedosov quantization.

Teaching Philosophy

Learning Physics can be a wonderfully rich experience. Of all the course a student might take during his/her university career, he believes physics offers some of the greatest potential for overall intellectual development. On one hand, it can describe and explain a wide variety of specific real-world phenomena, while on the other, it requires the use of more general intellectual processes such as abstraction, conceptualization, and logical reasoning that form the building blocks of a mature, thoughtful worldview. Unfortunately, many high school students fail to appreciate and value the riches physics and mathematics can offer them. This may be due to several factors, including poor experiences in past classes, a tendency to take math and physics only because it is required, and a more general feeling in society that they are simply “hard’’ and anyway unnecessary to really learn well. But whatever the cause, he believes, his role as an instructor will be to respond to this situation by firstly motivating students to see physical and mathematical concepts as being worthy of their effort, secondly communicating those concepts during class time in a clear and engaging manner, and last but not the least, facilitating the retainment of those ideas and concepts through classroom organization and appropriate technological tools. Dr. Roychowdhury strongly believes that physics, like any other natural science, cannot exist in isolation, and can only live through an active exchange of ideas between the people who pursue it. Since an important segment of the physics community are the students learning it, teaching is one of the most important components of the process of doing physics. As a physicist, he is motivated not only by the sheer pleasure of finding things out, but also explaining them to others. He receives a great deal of intellectual pleasure from explaining physical concepts and witnessing students understand them. He feels that it is essential to keep students involved in the subject and convey to them not just the information but the concepts and thought processes that make up the crux of the subject. In a nutshell, the art of teaching to him, is the art of assisting discovery.

Courses Taught

  • Mathematical Physics III, UPES, Semester IV, Feb-May 2024
  • Electromagnetic Theory, UPES, Semester VI, Feb-May 2024
  • Physics Lab for Computer Engineers, UPES, Semester II, Feb-May 2024
  • Applied Physics, Engineering course at DEI-Agra, Sem. I, Aug. - Dec. 2023
  • Physics Lab, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester I, Aug. - Dec. 2023
  • General Relativity, PhD Reading course at DEI-Agra, Semester I, Jul. - Oct. 2023
  • Quantum Field Theory, PG elective course at DEI-Agra (co-taught with Dr. Shiroman Prakash), Semester II, January - May 2022
  • Waves, Oscillations and Acoustics, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, January - May 2023
  • Electricity and Magnetism, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, January - May 2023
  • Physics Lab, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, January - May 2023  
  • Advanced Quantum Mechanics, PG course at DEI-Agra, Semester I, Sep. 2022 – Jan. 2023
  • Applied Physics, Engineering course at DEI-Agra, Sem. I, Sept. 2022 - Jan. 2023
  • Physics Lab, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester I, Sept. 2022 - Jan. 2023  
  • General Relativity, PG elective course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, Jan - May 2022
  • Physics Lab, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, January - May 2022  
  • Waves, Oscillations and Acoustics, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, March - May 2022
  • Electricity and Magnetism, UG course at DEI-Agra, Semester II, January - May 2022  
  • MSc Thesis Supervision Poisson Lie T duality as Canonical Transformation, Nehal Mittal at Universite Paris - Saclay, Online Platform, February - November 2021
  • Geometry and Mechanics, Federal University of Itajuba, Semester II, August - November 2020
  • Calculus on Manifold, Federal University of Itajuba, Semester II, Aug. - Nov. 2019
  • Classical Mechanics, Federal University of Itajuba, Semester I, April - July 2019
  • General Relativity, Federal University of Parana, Semester I, March - June 2018
  • Tutor Classical Electrodynamics, University of Sao Paulo, Semester I, March - June 2017  
  • Tutor Quantum Field Theory II, University of Sao Paulo, Semester II, Aug. - Dec. 2016
  • Tutor Quantum Field Theory I, University of Sao Paulo, Semester I, March - June 2016
  • Tutor Classical Mechanics, Seoul National University, Semester I, January - June 2013
  • Lecturer Emergent Gravity and Integrable Systems, DST-SERC School on Non-linear Dynamics, S. N. Bose. National Centre for Basic Sciences at Kolkata, Dec 2012
  • Teaching Assistant Quantum Field Theory, University of Naples Federico II, February - July 2010
  • Teaching Assistant Quantum Gravity, University of Naples Federico II, February - July 2009
  • Teaching Assistant Quantum Mechanics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Graduate School, Spring Semester, January - May 2007
  • Teaching Assistant Electrodynamics, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Graduate School, Fall Semester, August - November 2006 

Awards and Grants

  • 2022 – 2023 Seed Research Grant, DEI, Agra, India.
  • 2019 – 2021 PNPD/CAPES research fellowship, Brazil.
  • 2014 – 2017 FAPESP Post-doctoral Fellowship, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  • 2011 – 2013 IPM Fellowship, IPM, Tehran, Iran.
  • January 2011 Best Thesis Award, Dipartimento di Scienze Fisiche, University of Naples, Italy.
  • July 2010 Academic Visitor, Theoretical Physics, Institute for Advanced Studies, Princeton, USA.  
  • Aug - Sep 2009 Victor Weisskopf Scholarship, 47th Course: The Most Unexpected at LHC and the Status of High Energy Frontier, International School of Sub-nuclear Physics at Erice, Sicily, Italy.
  • Academic Year 2008 – 2011 Doctoral Research Fellowship, PhD Program, University of Durham, Liverpool, Nottingham in UK, University of Milan, Italy, IMPRS Fellowship at Germany Declined all.  
  • December 2006 JOINT CSIR-UGC test for Junior Research fellowship (JRF) and Eligibility for Lectureship (NET).
  • May 2004 – July 2005 Summer Internship and Undergraduate Associate, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP), Kolkata, India.
  • February 2003 JEST, PhD Qualifying examination in India, qualified with 98.5 percentile, Rank-32.  
  • May - July 2003 Summer Internship, Institute for Mathematical Sciences (IMSC), Chennai.  
  • July 2003 Awarded Best Science Bachelor, Krishnalal De Gold Medal for Best Physics Undergraduate, Dhirendra Mohan Saha Roy Gold Medal and Dr. Alexander Duff Memorial Prize for Basic Science, Scottish Church College, University of Calcutta.
  • December 1999 INMO, ranked 10th in RMO, Represented state of West Bengal for the National Mathematics Olympiad.