The Regional Office for Future Earth in South Asia has a domain that spans the region of SAARC, Myanmar, and the two Indian Ocean Island Countries of Mauritius and Maldives. The office was set up on 9 July 2016 and has been fully established over the last four years with its co-aligned host, the Divecha Centre for Climate Change at the Indian Institute of Science in Bengaluru, India.
The South Asia Regional Office has organized various international workshops. Over the past years, it has also established two Future Earth Programs and constituted a Governing Council (GC). The South Asia Regional Office is now expanding its outreach and activities and has initiated a five-year Regional Program to:
- Help communicate science to society
- Develop community driven pilot programs on-ground
- Build a young researchers community
- Act as an interface between science and policy
- Look into the issues related to Food Security, Water Security, Air Pollution and the associated Health Risks in South Asia.
The office is also building a networking and coordination team to facilitate research, and to partner with various organizations globally.
- More about the Future Earth South Asia Office (Coming soon)
- Future Earth Working Groups and National Committee- South Asia (Announcing soon)
- Future Earth Working Group Bangladesh
- Future Earth Working Group Bhutan
- Future Earth National Committee India
- Future Earth Working Group Mauritius
- Future Earth Working Group Maldives
- Future Earth Working Group Nepal
- Future Earth Working Group Sri Lanka
- Future Earth Working Group Pakistan
Future Earth South Asia
Divecha Centre for Climate Change
Indian Institute of Science
Tel: 080-22933425/2075, Fax: 080-22933425
South Asia Regional Office Staff
Director, Future Earth South Asia Regional Office
Prof. S. K. Satheesh is an Indian meteorologist and a professor at the Centre for Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences of the Indian Institute of Science (IISc). He holds the chair of the Divecha Centre for Climate Change, a centre undertaking research on climate variability, climate change and their impact on the environment. He is known for his studies on atmospheric aerosols and is an elected fellow of all the three major Indian science academies, i.e., Indian Academy of Sciences, Indian National Science Academy and the National Academy of Sciences, India, as well as The World Academy of Sciences. The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, the apex agency of the Government of India for scientific research, awarded him the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology, one of the highest Indian science awards for his contributions to Earth, Atmosphere, Ocean and Planetary Sciences in 2009. He received the TWAS Prize of the World Academy of Sciences in 2011. In 2018, he received the Infosys Prize (in Physical Sciences category), one of the highest monetary awards in India that recognize excellence in science and research, for his work in the field of climate change. In recent years, Prof. Satheesh has conceived and led numerous field experiments in remote and hostile environments, in pursuit of the science of aerosols, employing research ships and aircrafts, besides a network of ground-based observatories. The campaigns in which Prof. Satheesh was the Chief Mission Scientist remain benchmarks in scientific planning, meticulous execution, creative data analysis and interpretation. Currently, as the Director of Future Earth South Asia Regional office, Prof. Satheesh is responsible for entwining his knowledge for action plans for sustainable development. In recognition of his outstanding research contributions in the field of Atmospheric Science and Technology the Ministry of Earth Sciences honoured him with the “National Award in the field of Atmospheric Science and Technology” for the year 2019.
Co-Director, Future Earth South Asia Regional Office
Dr Smriti Basnett’s concern for society and environment fuels her desire to bring about the changes she wants to see around her. Smriti believes that change can be most effectively wrought by interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches. She works tirelessly to this end through the Future Earth Program at Divecha Centre for Climate Change (DCCC) located in the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. Smriti manages and directs programs for South Asia, pushing for the espousal of the Sustainable Development Goals in national and regional policies. She is currently working to establish Working Groups and Committees on Food Security, Water Security, Clean Air and Health in South Asia for Future Earth. Smriti started her career as a Junior Research Fellow in the Sikkim Glacier Commission from DST-Sikkim, continued her research at ISRO, SAC, Ahmedabad and DCCC, IISc, Bangalore between 2007 and 2016. After her PhD on ‘Glacier and Snow Studies in Sikkim Himalaya’, she worked with Sikkim University and local communities. She led many glacier expeditions, developed the university curriculum and helped establish DST's Centre of excellence on water resources, cryosphere and climate change at Sikkim University. While monitoring glaciers in North Sikkim, Smriti spent a lot of time working with the local communities, conducting science and art awareness programs in various urban and rural schools, documenting narratives on yak herding and trying her hand at the local traditional farming practices. She is a Co-leader in the UNESCO Project, ‘Himalayan Glaciers and Risks to Local Communities’, and conducts training, workshops and capacity development activities in Bhutan, Nepal and Sikkim. Smriti volunteers to work with the rural schools in North Sikkim and also to work with the Indian Himalayan Integrated Mountain Initiative (IMI). Smriti was a Berkner fellow and represented South Asia at the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and an ICIMOD fellow at the HUC-IHCAP glacier training and expedition (2017). Smriti likes skiing, paragliding, hiking, table tennis and running.
Program Coordinator, Future Earth South Asia Regional Office
Anupama Nair assists in organizing events and activities for the Future Earth South Asia Regional Office. She was associated with the Water Solutions Lab and the Climate and Energy Policy group at the Divecha Centre for Climate Change, Indian Institute of Science, since May 2019, before working full-time as a Program Coordinator for the Future Earth Regional Office. Anupama completed her Masters in Natural Resources and Governance in 2019 from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, shortly after receiving an Honours in Zoology from the University of Delhi. Her interdisciplinary background in the natural and social sciences fuels her interest in environmental governance and policy, which she hopes to engage with through her work.
K. Kasturirangan (Padma Vibhushan)
Chair, Governing Council, Future Earth South Asia, India
Dr Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan is an Indian space scientist who headed the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) from 1994 to 2003. Over many decades of a highly distinguished career, Dr Kasturirangan has served in capacities advising governments on a range of policy interventions. He is presently Chancellor of Central University of Rajasthan. He is the former chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University and the chair of Karnataka Knowledge Commission. He is a former member of the Rajya Sabha (2003–09) and a former member of the now defunct Planning Commission of India. He was also the Director of the National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore, from April 2004 to 2009. He is a recipient of the three major civilian awards from the Government of India: Padma Shri (1982), Padma Bhushan (1992) and Padma Vibhushan (2000).
Member (Senior Secretary), General Economics Division, Bangladesh Planning Commission, Bangladesh
Dr. Shamsul Alam is serving as the Senior Secretary of the General Economics Division of the Bangladesh Planning Commission. He completed his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics and Food Marketing from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, England, in 1991, during which he won the British Technical Assistance Award. He completed his M.A. in Economics from Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand, in 1983 on the Winrock International Asian Fellowship, after completing his B.Sc. (Hons.) in Agricultural Economics from Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, in 1972. Dr. Alam joined Bangladesh Agricultural University in 1974 as Research Associate, became Lecturer in 1975 and got promoted to Assistant Professor in 1978, Associate Professor in 1987 and Professor in 1993. He worked for UNDP/FAO as a National Consultant for 4 years 5 months (2000-2005) on leave (lien). He was granted the Erasmus Mundus Visiting Scholarship (Funded by EU) to work as Visiting Professor at the University of Ghent (Belgium), Humboldt University, Berlin (Germany) and Wageningen University (the Netherlands) during academic sessions 2007-2008 to deliver lectures on courses of M. Sc. in Rural Development, Agricultural Marketing, and Resource Economics. He has published 55 scientific articles in peer referred national and international journals, authored 12 books on research and economics text, supervised 40 Master’s theses and 2 Ph.D. dissertations at Bangladesh Agricultural University, and edited 25 books (national and international). Dr. Alam led the preparation of National Planning Documents as Member, General Economics Division, Bangladesh Planning Commission during 2009-20 period: Sixth Five Year Plan FY2011-FY 15; Revised Accelerated Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper II (FY09-FY11) entitled, ‘Steps Towards Change’; ‘Perspective Plan of Bangladesh 2010-21- Making Vision 2021 a Reality’; National Sustainable Development Strategy (2011-2021) and First & Second Implementation Review of the Sixth Five Year Plan (1912). He led the preparation of the Bangladesh National Social Security Strategy (2015-2025), and the Seventh Five Year Plan (2016-2020). He led the preparation of the Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100 and the Bangladesh second Perspective Plan (2021-41) based on Bangladesh Vision 2041. He also led the preparation of a number of evaluation and annual Progress Reports on MDGs and SDGs. During his tenure in GED, 105 knowledge products (plans, evaluation reports, research books) were published by GED. He currently serves as Member, Board of Regents Potuakhali Science and Technology University (four terms consecutively), Member, Syndicate of Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh (fifth term), Member, Syndicate of Bangabhandu Agricultural University, Salna (second term); Member, Syndicate of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, Sylhet (three term) and Member, Syndicate of Sylhet Agricultural University (consecutive four terms). Serving as Member of Governing Board, BIDS. He received the Ekushe Padak on Economics in 2020, Economist of Influence Award 2018 by SANEM (South Asian Network of Economic Modelling), Gold Medal Award by Bangladesh Agricultural Economists Association in 2018, Rebel Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam Memorial Medal by Government approved ‘Shikkha Projobekhan Society’ in 2018, Gallantry Award with Cash grant by Bangladesh Agricultural University Alumni Association in 2018 and Resource Development Award in 2019 by Resource Development Foundation.
Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury
Hon'ble Member of Parliament and Hon'ble Speaker, Bangladesh
Dr. Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury is the first ever woman Speaker of Bangladesh Parliament. She was elected Speaker for the first time in the Ninth Parliament on April 30, 2013. Shirin was elected for the second time as Speaker of Tenth Parliament on January 29, 2014 and for the third time as Speaker of 11th Parliament on 30 January 2019. She is a Member of the 11th Parliament of Bangladesh (24 Rangpur-6) from Bangladesh Awami League. Dr Chaudhury was elected as Chairperson of Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Executive Committee on October 09, 2014 for a term of three years. She received the Commonwealth Gender Chair on behalf of Bangladesh for 2010-2011. Dr. Chaudhury was the State Minister for Women & Children Affairs (2009-2013). Serving in the said position, she actively engaged in promoting gender equality and women empowerment. National Women Development Policy 2010, Children Policy 2011 and Domestic Violence (Prevention and Protection) Act 2010 were formulated under her leadership. Dr. Chaudhury, an Advocate of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh, enrolled with Bangladesh Bar Council, had been a practicing lawyer for the last sixteen years. Having obtained the Commonwealth Scholarship, she completed Ph.D (Doctor of Philosophy in Law) in 2000 from University of Essex, United Kingdom. Her Thesis is on “The Right to Life”. Her area of specialization is Constitutional Law and Human Rights. Dr Chaudhury was conferred honorary Doctorate from the University of Essex on 16 July 2014. She completed LL.B (Honours) and LL.M. from University of Dhaka, securing First Class First position. She secured first position in the Dhaka Board SSC (Humanities) Examination and second position in Dhaka Board HSC (Humanities) Examination in the Combined Merit List. Dr. Chaudhury has conducted many cases on violation of human rights involving constitutional issues. She was a panel lawyer for Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in 2008-2009. Legal area of her practice involves cases on Judicial Review by way of Writs. She also worked on Sustainable Development area- Gender Issues; Pro-bono Public Interest Litigation; issues concerning Human Securities and Right to Life. Dr. Chaudhury has teaching experience in different universities and educational institutions. She also worked with many human rights organizations and women rights organizations in promoting the cause of rights based approach. She developed dialogue/concept papers etc. with various relevant NGOs and Human Rights organizations on human rights issues. Dr Chaudhury was the Editor of Bangladesh Legal Decisions (BLD), Law Report Series published by Bangladesh Bar Council. (2003-2009 (July) Edition). Dr. Chaudhury was awarded Asia Society’s Humanitarian Service Award on 09 June 2010 in recognition of her role as a leader in advocating the elimination of violence against women and mainstreaming women’s empowerment and employment in Bangladesh. She received World Women Leadership Congress Award in February, 2015 in Mumbai, India.
Former Director/CEO, Bhutan Trust Fund for Environmental Conservation, Bhutan
Dr Pema Choephyel is currently serving on the Board of Royal Society for Protection of Nature (RSPN) of Bhutan, and as the Thought Leader of the Ecological platform of South Asia spearheaded by the World Bank. He retired from office in June 2020 and for 10 years was the CEO/director of the Bhutan Trust Fund for Environmental Conservation (BTFEC). During his tenure at BTFEC, the trust has seen enormous growth in its endowment fund and several safeguards have been instituted that enable BTFEC to qualify for National Implementing Entity for Adaptation Fund and Green Climate Fund (GCF). He also served as Board Members and Chairman of National Bank of Bhutan while serving on the Board. He was the Agricultural Advisor for Bhutan Development Finance Corporation Limited (BDFCL) and in 2008 joined politics under the PDP during the first parliamentary election of Bhutan. He completed his studies in Veterinary Sciences at the Bombay Veterinary College in 1985, following which he served in the Royal Government of Bhutan in various capacities, starting as the principal of Royal Veterinary Institute and later as the pedagogic head at Natural Resources Training Institute. He then served as the Chief of Extension and Chief of Research and was later appointed as the officiating Director of the Department of Agriculture under the Ministry of Agriculture. Following this, he was appointed as the first Director of the Council of Renewable Research of Bhutan where he served for 5 years.
Jagdeesh Rao Puppala
Anchor and Curator, Foundation for Ecological Security (FES), India
Jagdeesh Rao Puppala has been the Chief Executive of Foundation for Ecological Security (FES) since its inception in 2001 till July 2020. As the ‘Anchor and Curator’ at FES, he has now taken on the responsibilities of influencing policy, advancing knowledge generation and exchange and constituency building for the Promise of Commons initiative that aims to improve the governance and management of 30 million acres of village commons (community forests and pastures) in India. A practitioner from the very beginning, Jagdeesh’s 34 year professional engagement has been on interrelated issues of poverty and environmental degradation and on ‘systems thinking’ at the interface of ecology, society and economy. Jagdeesh has been conferred the prestigious ‘Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship’, 2015, and the Rainer Arnhold (Mulago) Conservation Fellowship, 2017. His areas of interest include Commons, decentralized governance, biodiversity informatics, systems thinking and history of science and law.
Prem Das Rai
Former Member of Parliament, Former Member of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance, India
Prem Das Rai, one of the most distinguished alumni of IIT Kanpur, is an Indian politician from the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) party. He has been associated with the party since its formative years and has helped shape the party’s manifesto and the vision. He has held all the key posts in the party including being the party’s General Secretary. In 2009, he earned the distinction of being the first and only member of Parliament with degrees from both an IIT as well as an IIM after being elected to the Lok Sabha from the Sikkim constituency. Mr. Rai continues to work towards the betterment of the Sikkimese people.
Prithvi Raj Singh
Founder and Managing Trustee, Jal Bhagirathi Foundation, India
Mr Prithvi Raj Singh is a development practitioner whose insights in the water and sanitation sector has made him part of governing bodies of several national and international organisations, including the World Water Council. Mr Prithvi Raj Singh is a Founder-Trustee and Chief Functionary of Jal Bhagirathi Foundation since its establishment in 2002. His visionary leadership, imagination, insight and boldness built the organisation from its nascent stages to its present stature. He provided strategic management, clear sense of direction and introduced sound principles of systems and processes that have been primarily responsible for the incredible growth of the organisation impacting thousands of people suffering from drinking water distress. He is a full time voluntary social worker and development specialist involved in numerous philanthropic organisations. He is also the Founder member and Managing Trustee of Jal Marudhara Foundation, an organisation involved in creating availability of safe water and rural livelihoods. He is the Managing Trustee of Khetri Trust and Trustee of Jal Biradari, a national level water advocacy platform. He is member of the Rajiv Gandhi Water Mission, Member of the Steering Committee of the European Union State Partnership Water Program and many other Government Committees on Water Resource Management.
M N Rajeevan
Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), India
Dr M N Rajeevan is a Meteorologist who has held important positions at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology-Pune, National Atmospheric Research Laboratory-Tirupati, Indian Meteorological Department-Pune, and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research-Mumbai, before his appointment as Secretary in the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Government of India, in 2015. He had served as a Scientist-G and Adviser to the Ministry before his current appointment. He has contributed significantly to the development of many application tools and prediction models for societal applications like long-range prediction models, gridded climate data sets and many other climate application products for regional climate services. He has also developed advanced statistical prediction models for operational long range forecasts of monsoon seasonal rainfall, and high resolution climate data sets like the high resolution gridded rainfall and temperature data sets, among other contributions. Dr Rajeevan is a fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences, the Indian National Science Academy and the National Science Academy of India. He is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics as well as a High-level Adviser on Climate Services and Expert Member of the Research Board of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). He is the Chairman of the Board of Governors of Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Thiruvananthapuram, and the Chairman of the Council of Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System (RIMES) for Africa and Asia, Bangkok. He has guided many research students in the University of Pune, Andhra University and S. V. University, Tirupati, and had over 118 peer-reviewed publications to his name.
Rajiv Pratap Rudy
Member of Parliament, Former Union Minister (Skill Development and Entrepreneurship) and Former Chair, Parliamentary Standing Committee on Water Resources, India
Rajiv Pratap Rudy started his career as a student union representative, becoming an eminent political leader in India. He has served as the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs in Shri Narendra Modi’s government. In Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government, he was the Minister of State for Commerce and Industry and later, the Minister of State with Independent Charge of Civil Aviation in 2003. He is currently serving his 4th term in the Lok Sabha and was previously also elected twice to the Rajya Sabha from the state of Bihar. He was elected as a State Legislator from Bihar at the age of 27 in the 1990s. He has served in various organizational roles, including the National General Secretary and the National Spokesperson of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), in his political career spanning nearly three decades. As a student union leader, he was the President, Students Union, Government College, Chandigarh, 1982, and General Secretary, Panjab University Students Union, 1984. He was elected as the youngest member of Bihar Legislative Assembly in 1990. Professionally an academician, a teacher of economics, he was a Lecturer in Economics in A.N. College, Patna (under Magadh, University), Bihar and has also had a stint as a Legal Counsel, apart from a deep association with the field of Aviation. During his tenure in the Civil Aviation Ministry between 2003 and 2004, he had witnessed comprehensive reforms and their footprints can be observed even today. Modernization of Indian Airports, launch of Low Cost Airlines, ATF tax reduction, abolition of IATT, revising the charter policy etc., were some the major milestones. He is credited as the only Parliamentarian in the world Captaining Airbus-320 Jets, flying with one of the largest airlines in India and he figures in the Limca book of World records. He also has the distinction of being one of the few civilians to have flown Sukhoi 30-MKI fighter aircraft, Grippen, and Rafale fighter. He makes special efforts to develop the District of Saran in Bihar as a model district by way of Industrial investment, infrastructure and raising resources and creating employment opportunities for the posterity and fulfilling their aspirations. He is also credited with having the largest GPS monitored Ambulance services numbering 65 in Chapra Parliamentary Constituency with a centralized toll free control room.
Khin Maung Lwin
Advisor, National Water Resources Committee and Former Director, Central Health Education Bureau, Ministry of Health, Myanmar
Dr Khin Maung Lwin served as a government staff member from 1975 till 2010 and retired as a Director of Central Health Education Bureau, Ministry of Health, Myanmar. After retirement, he continues teaching postgraduate students in the University of Public Health as an Honorary Professor and Advisor for Public Health Domain for the Ministry of Health and Sports. He attended the Institute of Medicine and University of Foreign Languages for his degree courses. His training was taken at the Central Institute of Political Sciences and Central Institute of Public Services in Myanmar and Faculty of Public Health, Mahidhol University of Bangkok, Thailand, and the Central Health Education Bureau of Indonesia. He is a founding member of Green Economy and Green Growth Association (not for profit) since 2011 and a Board Member of ASEAN Institute of Green Economy up till now. He supported the Asian Development Bank and French Government’s AFD-funded Urban Development Activities in Myanmar from 2011 till 2017 as a National Consultant. From 2013, he was appointed as an advisor for the National Water Resources Committee chaired by the Vice-president of the Government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar until the year 2020. He was elected as a Global Steering Committee Member representing the South-East Asia and East-Asia Region of Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) based in Geneva, Switzerland, affiliated to UNOPS, from 2011 until 2018. He is also serving as a WASH Ambassador for WSSCC in Myanmar. He started his career as a writer/journalist in 1968. He has published 13 books and many communication materials related to Health and Environment. He received “Tun Foundation Literary Award'' in 2008 for the book “Healthy Ageing” and “Science Literary Award'' for the book “The Needy Water Law in Myanmar'' in 2019. “Snail Fever: A Water-based Disease in Myanmar'' and “Health of the Rivers'' are his latest books published in 2019. He is a founder of the “New Vision Community Development Organization (not for profit)” with a team of community developers and youth organizers in 2018. He is a co-author of the book “Knowing the Salween River: Resource Politics of a Contested Trans-Boundary River”, printed by Springer Open, which was launched in Bangkok on 7 September, 2019.
Board Member of Center for Economic and Social Development, Myanmar
Dr Ohnmar Khaing holds an Associate’s Degree (Agricultural development and rural planning) from Cornell University, a Master’s Degree (Plant Protection – Entomology) from Yezin Agricultural University and a Ph.D. of Philosophy (Tropical Agriculture) from Kasetsart University. She has worked for the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)/ Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) as a Program Manager (November 2015-April 2018) in Myanmar. She has 24 years of professional experience in food security, agricultural development and rural livelihoods, with a special focus on science-policy interface; project design, development and management; capacity-building and raising of public awareness. She spent over 6 years (July 2009-August 2015) for the Food Security Working Group (FSWG) Myanmar, working on the development of food security strategy and its implementation with concerned partners, including the impacts of climate change and response measures. Dr. Khaing has previously worked for the World Food Program (WFP) as an Agricultural Specialist (June 2006-May 2008). She was Senior Research Officer, Department of Agricultural Research, Myanmar (November 2003 – December 2005); Senior Researcher, Royal Thai Agricultural Research Department (May – October 2003); and Supervisor, Agricultural Extension Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, Myanmar (1994 – 2003). She was awarded a Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship and spent a year (June 2008-June 2009) at Cornell University, NY.
U Tin Maung Aye Htoo
Deputy Director General, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation, Myanmar
Mr U Tin Maung Aye Htoo has had an illustrious career in the water resources utilization, and management streams in Myanmar functioning in multiple roles across many years the prime of which is the august role of the deputy director general. With vast experience covering dry regions and pump irrigation models, Mr. Maung began a significant portion of his career with a UNICEF funded rural irrigation project. As Deputy Director General of the Irrigation and Water Utilization Management Department, he worked on critical areas such as construction of Pump Irrigation Projects, exploration of Groundwater in feasible areas, implementation of Gravity Flow Water Supply System in hilly regions and capacity building tasks for the improvement of the knowledge skill of the staff.
Managing Director, Mandalay Technology, Advisory Board Member, CVT Coordinating Board Member, GEGG and AIGE, Myanmar
Dr. Zaw Naing is the Managing Director of Mandalay Technology in Myanmar and has a number of professional affiliations. He is a Registered Engineer at the ASEAN Federation of Engineering Organizations (AFEO) and Associate Fellow, ASEAN Academy of Engineering and Technology. He is a Consultant for the Global Information and Communication Technology Department, World Bank, Washington DC, USA, and a member of the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and the Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD). He is a visiting fellow at the Center for Global Change and Earth Observation (CGCEO) and Center for Advanced Studies on International Development (CASID). He is a Joint-Secretary of the Myanmar Computer Professionals Association (MCPA) and Vice President of the Myanmar Business Executives (MBE) Association. He is Joint-Auditor of Myanmar Oil and Gas Services Society (MOGSS) and he is also a member of the Industrial Development Task Force, MES, and of the Myanmar Earthquake Committee. Dr. Naing is the National Team Leader of the Integrated Water Resources Management Study for the National Water Resources Committee of Myanmar and a Collaborator on Urbanization and Sustainability under Global Change and Transitional Economies: Synthesis from Southeast, East and North Asia (SENA). He is the Country Coordinator for Myanmar at the Asian Science Camp. He is a Board Member of the Green Economy Green Growth (GEGG), Coordinating Board Member of the ASEAN Institute of Green Economy (AIGE) and Coordinator of National and Regional TVET Conferences and Exhibition. He is also the Founder and General Secretary of Zanaka Education Foundation, and Vice President of the Infrastructure Working Group of Myanmar Business Forum (Jointly Organized by ADB and UMFCCI). He is a National Consultant for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, National Export Strategy (2020-2025), International Trade Center (ITC) in Myanmar. Dr. Naing completed his B.E. in Electronics from Yangon Institute of Technology and his M.B.A. from Yangon Institute of Economics. He was a Humphrey Fellow at the Michigan State University, U.S.A in 2008-09 and completed his Ph.D., from the National Institute of Development Administration, Thailand, in 2018.
Director General, Institute for Social and Environmental Transition, Nepal
Mr Ajaya Dixit, currently the Executive Director of the Institute for Social and Environmental Transition (ISET – Nepal), Kathmandu, has an MSc in Engineering from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK. He completed his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering from Regional Engineering College, Orissa, India. Previously, Mr Dixit held positions at Institute of Engineering, Kathmandu, and Nepal Water for Health, among others. He has published extensively in prestigious journals such as the Economic and Political Weekly, the most recent of which are publications about Climate Change Vulnerabilities and Ecosystem-based Adaptation. His research interests include Water economics, Irrigation, Hydro-electricity and related engineering and Energy; Dams and reservoirs, Disaster risk management, Mainstreaming climate resilience, Climate change adaptation and Climate change vulnerability among others.
Chief Executive Officer, Ullens Education Foundation
Arnico Panday became CEO of Ullens Education Foundation in February 2020 after serving the Foundation as a Trustee since 2018. Prista and Arnico’s two children attend Ullens School. Born to a Swiss mother and a Nepali father, Arnico grew up in Zürich, Sindhupalchok and Lalitpur. He earned a Bachelor’s degree with highest honors in Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard University, a Masters in Land Resources from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a Doctor of Science in Atmospheric Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Arnico was a postdoctoral researcher at MIT and the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University. He then served on the faculty of the University of Virginia before moving back to Nepal. Until January 2020 he was Regional Programme Manager of the Atmosphere Programme at ICIMOD, where he built up and led a team working on research, mitigation and policy of air pollution and climate change in Nepal and the region. Arnico has served on the Steering Committee of UN’s Climate and Clean Air Coalition, on several Government of Nepal task forces, and on the Expert Working Group of the GoN’s Sagarmatha Sambaad. He is on the Governing Council of Future Earth South Asia, on the Advisory Group of a program at the Japan-based Institute for Global Environmental Strategies Japan, and on the Advisory Board of Nepal Economic Forum. He is a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Integrated Development Studies (IIDS), and continues to supervise PhD students and publish research. Arnico is very passionate about improving the quality of education in Nepal. He led the transition at Ullens to online instruction during the Covid-19 pandemic, and looks forward to designing and building Foundation’s future college in Nala, starting other programs in higher education, and building partnerships with like-minded schools across Nepal. Arnico enjoys hiking, mountain biking, swimming, and photography.”
Chair, Institute for Integrated Development, and Former Vice Chair, Planning Commission, Government of Nepal
Dr Waglé is the Chairman of the Institute for Integrated Development and the former Vice Chairman of the National Planning Commission (NPC) of the Government of Nepal. He served as Member of NPC twice between 2014 and 2017, and advised on the formulation of national policies and strategies. In the aftermath of the severe Nepal earthquake in 2015, Dr. Waglé co-led the Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) project and helped garner billions of dollars in pledges. He also led Nepal’s ministerial delegation to the landmark Third UN Conference on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa. Dr. Waglé has worked as an international development professional for more than 15 years on policy assignments in over 20 countries, most recently as senior economist at the World Bank in Washington, DC. He holds a PhD in economics from the Australian National University, an MPA in international development (MPA/ID) from Harvard University, and a BSc (econ) from the London School of Economics.
D. M. Athula H. Senaratne
Research Fellow and Head/Environmental Economics Policy Research, Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka
Dr Athula Senaratne is an Environmental Economist and has published on various themes including common property resources, sustainable agriculture, supply/demand analysis of fish, non-timber forest products (NTFP) and community-based aquaculture. His current research interests include climate adaptation, institutions and property rights, and environment and macroeconomic policy. He was previously engaged as a Research Officer (Department of Agriculture), an Agricultural Economist (Land Use Policy Planning Division), an Aquaculture Economist (National Aquaculture Development Authority), and as the Director-Competition Promotion (Consumers Affairs Authority). He jointly authored the Sinhala medium text book on ‘Natural Resource and Environmental Economics’, which is being used at undergraduate level teaching in Environmental Economics at universities in Sri Lanka. He is also on the Editorial Board of the Climate Change Magazine of Sri Lanka, published by the Climate Change Secretariat of the Ministry of Environment and Mahaweli Development. He served as the President of the Sri Lankan Agricultural Economics Association (SLAEA) in 2016.
Mahavidanage Jaanaki Gooneratne
Former Head/ Senior Deputy Director, Food Technology Section, Ministry of Science and Technology, Sri Lanka
Dr Jaanaki Gooneratne is a Food Scientist and Nutritionist, with many years of research experience at the Industrial Technology Institute (formally known as Ceylon Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research) under the Ministry of Science and Technology, Sri Lanka. She plays an advisory role on food applications/formulations, assists in developing food standards and helps in regulatory matters, providing guidance to both Government and Private sector organizations. She has closely worked with India, Japan, China and the United Kingdom, on food-related research projects that have added value to a number of local food commodities such as legumes, rice, millets, banana, coconut and bamboo. Her research interests also include raising the nutritional status of people, and she was an advisor to the Sri Lankan Government in its efforts to improve the nutritional status of preschool/school going children. Her passion has been towards sports nutrition, and she was the winner of a National Science and Technology Award for commercializing an isotonic lime-based product for sports men/women. Dr. Gooneratne obtained a PhD in Food Science and Nutrition from the University of Sri Jayawardenapura, with a major part of her research done in food laboratories in Sweden and the UK. She continues to share her research knowledge by teaching food science and nutrition to Masters students in two universities and provides guidance and training to students from many other universities. She is a Fulbright Senior Scholar and completed her post-doctoral studies at the John Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA. She also trains trainers on food safety in the UK and conducts training in many island-wide programs, particularly in the food industry. She has published a book titled “Food components in a healthy diet” meant for improving peoples’ food habits. As General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science, she was responsible for the popularization of science among teachers, students and society. She also held positions as President of the Nutrition Society of Sri Lanka and was a member of the Asian Nutrition Society. She has shared much of her knowledge on nutrition in several, popular radio and TV channels.
Director, National Plant Quarantine Service, Department of Agriculture, Ministry of Agriculture, Sri Lanka
Dr W.A.R.T. Wickramaarchchi is a senior bureaucrat in the agriculture system in Sri Lanka and is currently the Director of the National Plant Quarantine Service (NPQS) of the Department of Agriculture. He has more than 25 years of working experience in many areas of the country as well as in other South Asian countries such as Bangladesh and India by serving as Sri Lanka's official representative to SAARC Agriculture Office.