Pankaj Sharma holds a Ph.D. in physics and a master’s degree in solid-state physics. He has an MBA from Purdue University and an Advanced Certificate in Applied Computer and Information Technology, Rochester Institute of Technology. Dr. Sharma is Associate Director for Operations and International Affairs at Discovery Park, Purdue's $400 million home to the university's large-scale interdisciplinary research efforts. He also currently holds a courtesy associate professor appointment in Industrial Technology. Recently, Pankaj has been selected ‘Fulbright New Century Scholar.’
He joined Discovery Park in 2002 at its inception. His key responsibilities there include strategic planning, coordination, communication, and integration of synergistic research among the Discovery Park centers. In addition, he promotes scientific, technological, and entrepreneurial culture; develops guidelines, and provides general management. He engages stakeholders in developing strategic plans. He facilitates collaboration among management, engineering, and science researchers/faculty, and entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and other funding agencies. He identifies and cultivates new large-scale interdisciplinary research projects. He has been instrumental in developing strategic international research partnerships in science and technology. He also serves as a key liaison between Discovery Park and research institutions including corporations in India.
Prior to joining Discovery Park, Dr. Sharma was an Associate Director of Purdue’s Rare Isotope Measurement Laboratory at Purdue. He has worked on the application of accelerator mass spectrometry in geological and biomedical tracing. An experimental nuclear physicist with expertise in applications of radioactivity in dating and tracing in geological and biological systems, he has extensively collaborated with scientists from more than 10 countries and published over 90 research papers in national and international journals. His current interests include research administration and strategic planning of interdisciplinary research enterprise in nanotechnology; biosciences; entrepreneurship; healthcare engineering; cyber infrastructure; energy; environment; climate change; sustainability; global competitiveness; science, technology, innovation, and policy.
Before coming to Purdue in 1993, Dr. Sharma was a researcher at the University of South Carolina, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Rochester.