Dr. Nilanjana Banerjee
Associate Professor and Cluster Head
Dr. Nilanjana Banerjee is a teacher, mentor, researcher, and academic administrator. She holds a master's degree in chemical engineering from the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai, and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, USA. Her passion lies in promoting equity in education, and she provides the best learning experience for her students both inside and outside the classroom. Dr. Banerjee strongly believes in fostering a culture of teamwork and collaboration among students and faculty members.
Prior to joining UPES, Dr. Banerjee has held several significant roles. She served as a Lecturer (2010 – 2012) in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Maharaja Sayajirao University, Vadodara, where she was actively involved in teaching, learning, and student mentoring. Following this, she worked as a post-doctoral fellow (2016 – 2017) in the Chemical Engineering Department at Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, USA, focusing on high-shear polymer rheology studies. Subsequently, she served as a Senior Consultant (2017 – 2018) at Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), Department of Higher and Technical Education, Govt. of Maharashtra. In this role, her responsibilities included working with various state universities in Maharashtra to ensure optimal utilization of funds and monitoring academic and research quality.
Dr. Banerjee's research interests encompass Alternate Energy Resources, Biomass and Biofuels, Decarbonization, Household Air Pollution, Reactor Design and Engineering, and Modeling and Simulation.
With a firm belief in equity in education, Dr. Banerjee recognizes that all students have different learning capabilities. To ensure holistic learning and evaluation, she incorporates various methods of assessment in her teaching methodologies. In her classroom, she employs successful pedagogical initiatives such as "Project-based learning," "flipped classrooms" and a mix of synchronous and asynchronous lectures. Dr. Banerjee also advocates for open book and open resource examinations to promote application-oriented assessment rather than rote learning. By adopting these methods, she ensures that students have equal opportunities to learn at their own pace and excel academically.
Currently, Dr. Banerjee teaches Chemical Reaction Engineering to pre-final year Chemical Engineering students. She presents a comprehensive understanding of the process by integrating reaction engineering with thermodynamics and other transport processes. To enhance students' practical knowledge, she encourages the use of tools like MS Excel and software to comprehend the applications of principles and their industrial usability. Throughout her academic and research career spanning over 10 years, she has also taught various courses, including mass transfer, heat transfer, hydrodynamics, fluid mechanics, and risk management in energy industries.
Awards and Grants
Dr. Banerjee recently completed her post-graduate diploma certificate in Leadership and Organizational Management (LEAP) from UPES. In 2015, she received the Six Sigma White Belt certificate of achievement from Aveta Business Institute. Her master's research project was nominated for the ISTE-IPCL best master thesis award. She earned gold medals for each year of her undergraduate degree for securing the first position in the Department of Chemical Engineering, at Nirma University, and was honoured with the Best Student award during her final year of undergraduate studies.
Currently, Dr. Banerjee leads a team of 40 faculty members and staff and 800 students as a cluster head, overseeing 3 undergraduate programs, 4 post-graduate programs, and 3 doctoral programs in chemical and petroleum engineering and earth sciences. She has also led the School of Advanced Engineering strategy team to plan the school's next five-year vision and the strategic steps to achieve it. Additionally, she led the department for NAAC and NBA accreditations and has been actively involved in numerous planning and strategic decision-making teams within the school and the university. As a member of the American Institute of Chemical Technology and Institute of Engineering and Technology, UK, she maintains current research collaborations with MIT USA, ICT Mumbai, and Max Planck Institute of Multidisciplinary Sciences, Germany.