TV Venkateswaran

Name: TV Venkateswaran

Designation: Visiting Professor



Ph.D. (Popular Perceptions of Science in Colonial Tamil Nadu 1820-1920) Tamil University, Thanjavur, 2002

MA (History) University of Madras 1995.

PG Diploma in Science and Technology Communication, Pondicherry University, 1991.

BSc (Mathematics), Madras University, 1984.

Employment: Vigyan Prasar, Department of Science and Technology, New Delhi 2002-2023.

Centre for Development of Imaging Technology, Thiruvananthapuram, 1996-2002.

Areas of Research: Intersection of History of Science, Science and Society Studies, Science Education and Public Communication of Science and Technology.

Research Focus: In my recent inquiry, I engage with the circulation of modern science in the premodern Tamil region, in particular the emergence of the southern solar calendar tradition, vākya pañcāṅkam – almanack computation, and the 19th-century calendar reform movements. Further, I also examine the growth of science content in school textbooks and the history of science communication in the Indian cultural cosmos. The specific context of my research is the Tamil region. However, I address the complex interplay between science and society relevant to revisiting the perspectives on the nature of modern science. Presently, I am working on teasing out calendrical data from the epigraphy and inscriptions from the Tamil region to explore the evolution of the unique form of solar calendar traditions followed in the southern peninsular region. Further, I am also interested in examining the contours of science communication through social media in contemporary Indian society and how it is shaping our evolving perceptions about the public communication of science and technology. In addition to research, I am actively engaged in public communication of science and technology and developing learning modules. I have been part of the educational reform initiatives in Tamilnadu and was the committee chair for preparing the middle and high school science textbooks for the Tamil Nadu State Board of School Education. Further, I have authored more than 70 popular science books in Tamil and English, and a few of them have been translated into Hindi and other Indian languages. I write regular columns in dailies and periodicals on the recent developments in science and technology. I have been a science communication trainer for the past 20 years. I recently was part of the team that developed the module on science communication for the Capacity Building Commission under Mission Karmayogi to train staff and faculty in public engagement of science and outreach.

Teaching: I co-teach following courses

HSS642 Science and Society

IDC411 School Science Curriculum and Textbooks

IDC412 Field Experience in Science Education

IDC636 Pedagogy of Science

IDC637 Science Communication

Selected Publications:

  Proto-historic Astronomy in India: A Review, in Jha, A. K., & Sahay, S. (Ed.) Aspects of Science and Technology in Ancient India. Routledge India. (2023).

  Ragoonatha Charry and the observations of the total solar eclipse of 1868 from Vanpurthy (Wanparthy), India, Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 24(2), 363–388 (2021).

  Heavenly Bodies, Celestial Phenomena and Calendrical Data in Tamil Epigraphical Inscriptions (Fifteenth to Seventeenth Centuries). NTM Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Technik und Medizin, (2020).

  Star Wars in colonial Tamil region: contours of a discourse between European missionary and a ‘native’pañcāngkam computer on ‘modern’astronomy. Journal of Scientific Temper (JST), 4(3 & 4). (2018).

  Word and World Views: Cultural configurations and Domestication of Modern Science in Tamil nadu, Contemporary Perspectives, Vol 2, No 1 (January- June 2008) pp.112-135.


Fellowship, UNAWE, International Astronomical Union, Netherlands

Fellowship, Science & You, Public Communication of S&T, Nancy, France.

Fellowship, Communicating Astronomy to Public, International Astronomical Union, Colombia.

Fellowship, 7th European Spring School on History of Science and Popularization-Science on Television.

Fellowship, Visualisation of heavens, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science.


Editorial board of ‘Science and Culture’, Indian Science News Association, Kolkata.

Editorial board, Thulir, Science periodical in Tamil.

Associate editor, Ariviyal Palagai, a monthly Tamil popular science periodical.

POEC- Public Outreach and Education Committee

Astronomical Society of India

Society for the History of Science Kolkata

Commonwealth association for science, technology and mathematics education (CASTME)

Indian Science News Association

Kolkata Indian Science Writers Association