Computer Society of India
Computer Society of India is the first and largest body of computer professionals in India. It was started on 6 March 1965 by a few computer professionals and has now grown to be the national body representing computer professionals. It has 72 chapters across India, 511 student branches, and more than 100,000 members.
The Computer Society of India is a non-profit professional meet to exchange views and information learn and share ideas. The wide spectrum of members is committed to the advancement of theory and practice of Computer Engineering and Technology Systems, Science and Engineering, Information Processing and related Arts and Sciences.
The Society also encourages and assists professionals to maintain integrity and competence of the profession and fosters a sense of partnership amongst members. Besides the activities held at the Chapters and Student Branches, the Society also conducts periodic conferences, seminars.
Through the initiatives of Professor Rangaswamy Narasimhan, the first President, CSI has been in close liaison with International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) since its inception in 1965, when observers from India attended the IFIP Council meeting. Since 1974, when CSI became a member of IFIP, CSI has organized many IFIP sponsored events and was host to the 1978 Council meeting in Bombay and 1988 General Assembly in New Delhi. It represents India in technical committees and working groups of IFIP.
The Society functions under the guidance of an Executive Committee. The members of this Committee are elected by voting members of the Society. Functional head of the Society is the President and is assisted by the Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer.
The other members are the Regional Vice Presidents of Seven Regions and Divisional Chairpersons of Five Divisions viz. Division-I (Hardware), Division-II (Software), Division-III (Scientific Applications), Division-IV (Communications) and Division-V (Education & Research). Apart from the above the immediate Past President continue to be associated with the Executive committee. An elected Nominations Committee of three members conducts the annual elections.
The Society is targeted at the IT professionals and also user community at large. Hence the membership of the Society is open to all professionals involved in the field of information technology. The membership categories include individual and institutional. In the individual member category there are five grades namely Fellow, Senior, Member, Associate and Student, whereas institutional membership includes organisations and educational institutions. A professional can also apply for life membership in the society.
Computer Society of India regularly organizes workshops, seminars conventions, and technical talks for the benefit of professionals and users of IT apart from conducting continuing education and professional development programmes for a focussed audience of budding professionals, researchers and students. The CSI Annual Conventions are held in different cities across India. The other leading examples of national/international conferences include BIG, COMAD, ConSEG, COMNET, ConfER etc. Among these, the National Conferences on Education and Research (ConfER) are the latest addition.
The CSI Annual Conventions, usually attracting 2000 plus participants, have been held since 1965. Apart from technical sessions, tutorials and panels, a principal feature has been the Exhibition.
CSI also organizes a number of international conferences regularly. The most stable series of these has been the Networks conferences, which have been held every two years since 1980, with IFIP co-sponsorship.
National Student Conventions have been annual events since 1985. CSI along with its member institutions also host National, Regional, State level students symposia and conventions. The National Student Conventions many times are hosted together with the CSI Annual Conventions. A record number of Student Conventions are held spread across India.
The Computer Society of India also extends funding support for research projects as well as funds visits of researchers presenting papers at international conferences. It facilitates industry-academia interaction through CIO meets, Professors’ meets. There are awards for professionals, industry and government to recognize achievements in ICT domain. Indian Government has also entrusted CSI with the task of training physically challenged to improve their career prospects in ICT sector.
Chapters and Student Branches
A Chapter of the Society is a group of members in a particular locality or city. The chapters play a major role in achieving the objectives of the Society. It has direct links with the members. For the benefit of members, the chapter organizes monthly technical meetings, product presentations, exhibitions, film and video shows. The chapters also host Regional, Divisional, National, International events along with the sponsoring agencies. The Chapter activities are managed by a committee of elected members headed by the Chairman. The Chairman is assisted by the Vice-Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The committee has eight members each one taking care of the activities relating to the divisions of the Society.
Being closely associated with students, the Society has developed a well-established network of "Student Branches" all across the country. The activities conducted for the students associated with the Society include lecture meetings, seminars, conferences, training programmes, programming contests and practical visits to installations. In an ever changing environment, CSI offers professional counseling being a great need of the hour. And this is done by being in close contact with its young members through various events, conferences, symposia to name a few. The CSI Student Branches are mentored by Student Branch Counsellor – typically a senior faculty member with good professional standing. The student branches have student office bearers and management committees whose composition may vary. The student branches are guided by 7 Regional Student Coordinators. In order to strengthen students related programmes, the CSI ExeCom created a new position of “National Student Coordinator” The National Student Coordinator, special invitee to CSI ExeCom, represents student branches at the national level meetings and programmes. At present, there are about 500 student branches across India.
CSI started conducting the National Standard Test for Programming Competence in 1975. A Directorate of Education was set up in 1985, and a number of modules, such as Systems Analysis and Design, Data Communication, OS, and DBMS, are covered, in order to ensure a minimum level of professional competence, especially among those without a university background.
CSI has an Educational Directorate which undertakes activities related to certification of professionals related to the latest technologies. Its recent initiative of distance education in the Business Domain areas offers technology enabled learning supported by personal counseling & expert advice. The Education Directorate is headed by a full-time academician who along with Chairman of Division V (Education & Research) and the National Student Coordinator collectively provides necessary guidance and directions to the member academic institutions and students community.
The Education Directorate organizes continuing education and professional development programmes. It also extends finance assistance to research projects undertaken by faculty and postgraduate students. Student professional development activities have been encouraged through the student branches as well as student-paper contests at the Annual Conventions.
Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
Computer Society of India (CSI), has implemented the concept of “Special Interest Groups” to promote activities and research in dew focused areas. Various Special Interest Groups have been formed accordingly.
Special Interest Group on Start-ups for Digital India
Core objective is to focus on creating and nurturing the start-up ecosystem in India. Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi has laid emphasis on development of start-up ecosystem as one of his corner stone for the development of youth and entrepreneurship in India. This SIG provides help, support and organizes events on its own and with member institutes and other ministries to promote start-up formation, legal, financials, technical and marketing issues etc.
Special Interest Group on Artificial Intelligence (SIGAI)
It has been a national forum for promoting Artificial Intelligence and exchanging of information related to AI research. Initiatives of SIGAI include various national and international journals, conferences and workshops. Central objectives of Special Interest Group on Artificial Intelligence (SIGAI) include,
- To provide a national forum for interaction among Indian Artificial Intelligence community
- To act as an interface to other national AI forums and international bodies and initiatives
- To promote research and practical applications of AI in academia and industry
Special Interest Group on eGovernance
Core objective is to focus on important areas where Information Technology can be leveraged and bring like minded professionals together to add value by bringing out recommendations relevant to various stake holders.
Special Interest Group on Free and Open Source Software (CSI-SIG-FOSS)
One of the earliest SIGs, the SIG-FOSS has been carrying out several activities across the country in promoting the use of FOSS.
Computer Society of India brings out three national publications namely CSI Journal of Computing, CSI Communications and CSI Adhyayan.
CSI Journal of Computing is a quarterly, which contains rigorously reviewed articles and original research papers in the field of theoretical interest, case studies of successful applications of national relevance, and reviews of books and journals.
CSI Communications is a monthly theme based national publication covering technical articles of current interests and reports of conferences, symposia, and seminars organized by CSI and member institutions. CSI Communications also serves as an important medium of communication between CSI and its members.
CSI Adhyayan is a quarterly publication dedicated for IT education, research and student community. This quarterly publication performs the functions of a newsletter, a magazine and journal. It also brings out regional/chapter newsletters, proceedings of conferences, state-of-the-reports, and other literature such as workshops/tutorials courseware and eLearning resources.