Self and Community

Curriculum vitae



Arjendu K. Pattanayak: Ghare-bahare

Carleton Community:

  • Judiciary Committee -- elected (2002-2004)
  • LTC Advisory Committee (2002-2004)
  • Art Gallery Advisory Committee (2002-2004)
  • Career Center Advisory Committee (2005-2006)
  • HHMI/CISMI Steering Committee (2005-2006)
  • ITS Internal Review Committee (2006)
  • Member of Carleton's CALL faculty team
  • CISMI Co-director (2008 -)
  • ECC/FCPC -- elected (2006- 2008)
  • Faculty Judiciary Committee (2006-) – elected
  • FAC – elected (2009-2011)
  • Carleton’s Presidential Search Committee (elected)

Scientific Community:

  • Member of the American Physical Society 

(Major affiliations: Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics, Group on Statistical and Nonlinear Physics).

  • Member of the American Association of Physics Teachers
  • Referee for Physical Review (Letters, A, E), J. Stat. Phys., Entropy, Nonlinearity, J. Phys. (A and B) and Physics Letters A.
  • Referee for CRDF.
  • Organizing committee member for the Fall '00 meeting of the Texas Section of the American Physical Society.
  • Co-organizer (with Bob Hilborn, and Don Spector) the program KITP Miniprogram on Theorists at Undergraduate Institutions.
  • Co-organizer (with George Haller) Mini-symposia on Diffusive Mixing and Fluid flow, SIAM Dynamical Systems Snowbird meeting '05.


  • Reviewed for many years for Science Books and Films, a publication of the AAAS.
  • Column on 'Intelligent Design' for 'Indian Life and Style' -- a popular magazine.
  • (Now defunct) Bi-monthly column for 'The Indian American' -- a popular magazine.
  • (Now defunct) Blog at the new website TheIndianAmerican.com.
  • Talk about Einstein at the Northfield Public Library as part of a PBS/Nova event related to the 'Einstein Year' in physics.
  • Maintain professional blog at Confused At A Higher Level.


I was born in Cuttack, Orissa but grew up mostly in New Delhi, India.

As is 'typical' back home, I grew speaking three languages (Oriya, English, Hindi), picked up some Punjabi by virtue of living in Delhi, some Assamese from a couple of years in Assam, Bengali by association with Bengali speakers and by triangulation (if you know Hindi, Oriya, Assamese, you can get there), and finally some Maithili from my Bihari friends (these aren't dialects, almost every language I mentioned has a distinct vocabulary, and in fact, different script). I also had 4 formal years of Sanskrit at school, of which I retain the bare minimum. All of this still doesn't help me understand most of the languages spoken in India or in Indian restaurants in the US, for that matter.

I have since lived, and been associated with colleges and universities, in Delhi, Providence (RI), Austin (TX), Toronto (ONT) and Houston (TX). I also spent a substantial chunk of time visiting the California Bay Area. After a couple of years of living near the lakes in Minneapolis, in the final transition, now live in tiny Northfield.

[What kind of town is Nfld? Well, minimal requirements met: Decent brit pub and cafes with wireless hotspots, couple of browsable bookstores, an excellent little grocery coop ,good running, surprisingly good desi buffet restaurant -- one of two in this town(!), a library with a great kids books collection, good friends in the community, etc. It is also about 40 minutes from 'The Cities', which means some great urban amenities including at least one excellent jazz restaurant, an international hub, and a rather remarkable dolphin show. ]


I read avidly (it used to be a lot of fiction and little bursts of non-fiction, but now it's the other way around for some reason; perhaps reality caught up with me), watch tons of movies, with my favorite being French films and listen to music incessantly. When I was in Austin I studied North Indian classical music with Anita and Stephen Slawek for about 3 years.

I grew up playing cricket and was pretty obsessive about it, as were most of my friends, to be honest -- we broke plenty of neighbourhood windows in the process. [for those who care, I played briefly on the same team as Shahrukh Khan while in high school ]. I also played a bit of badminton [ one of my neighbourhood opponents was Shikha Swaroop-- I am not faking this strange Bollywood and childhood sports connection, promise!], and soccer. After I left India, I continued with cricket for the International Cricket Club of Rhode Island (we played in a league based out of Boston). I also learned to love squash at Brown -- at one point I was playing for an hour daily with James McKernan. I didn't keep up, and then started throwing out various joints when I played only occasionally. I have experimented with aikido, tai chi, yoga, and pilates. I am learning to enjoy cold-weather running.

I have been irregularly changing the quote in my email signature since 1998. Here's a subset of the quotes I have used.

Personal World Clock.

In memoriam Kishore Chandra Pattanayak. --> size=2 width="100%" align=center>


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Arjendu K. Pattanayak 1999- today