NIFS-YSA Successfully Conducts a Virtual Research Symposium
National Conference on Multidisciplinary Research (NCMR) 2020, Virtual Postgraduate Symposium was held on 8th October 2020. NCMR 2020 was the second consecutive research symposium organized by the Young Scientists’ Association (YSA) of the National Institute of Fundamental Studies (NIFS), Sri Lanka. While the first research symposium by YSA was organized as a conference for research students within the NIFS, this year the Association has taken a step further in organizing a National level symposium for postgraduate students and early career researchers of Sri Lanka. Given the COVID 19 pandemic situation, the event was planned as an online conference.
The YSA was established in 2018 under the guidance of the Director of NIFS Prof. Saman Seneweera and since its inception, the YSA has been a very active organization within the NIFS, organizing and conducting events to mould and groom the future scientists of Sri Lanka. YSA includes postgraduate students, undergraduates and volunteers of NIFS who engage with research at the NIFS. The aim of the YSA is to support early career researchers to achieve research excellence. The annual research symposium is one of the main events organised by the YSA. This year’s research symposium was organised under four fields; biological sciences, chemical sciences, physical sciences and social sciences, for which abstracts were received from researchers, around SrI Lanka as well as foreign institutions. The keynote address of NCMR 2020 was delivered by Prof. Nilwala Kottegoda, Professor at University of Sri Jayawardenapura, who is an eminent woman scientist, celebrated for her revolutionary invention of urea-hydroxyapatite nanohybrids and has been denominated as one of the nine inventive women by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in 2018. A guest talk was also delivered by Dr. Hasini Jayathilaka, an emerging woman scientist who was named a Forbes 30 under 30s for her contributions to Cancer metastasis.
The YSA would like to extend their sincere thanks to the Director and the Secretary of NIFS, advisory committee and the editorial committee of NCMR 2020, advisors of YSA and the expert reviewers of abstracts, for their encouragement and guidance. YSA also extends their gratitude to all the scientists and the administrative staff of the NIFS for their support in organising this event. A special mention goes to the Science Education and Dissemination Unit of NIFS for their dedication and enormous cooperation in making this online event a reality. YSA would also like to thank the main sponsor, Bank of Ceylon for their contribution in making NCMR 2020 a success. NCMR 2020 congratulates all the presenters and hopes this virtual conference provided young researchers an opportunity to network and share their knowledge with the research community from around the country.