Srilatha Batliwala is Director, Knowledge Building and Feminist Leadership with CREA, an international feminist organisation based in Delhi that works on gender, sexuality and rights. Her life’s work has bridged the worlds of theory and practice, and is widely known for her work in building grassroots women’s movements, and for her writings on women’s empowerment, women’s movements and feminist leadership. She is currently engaged mainly in building the capacity of young women activists around the world, and in creating accessible knowledge products that provide conceptual clarity on critical issues for activists. She serves on the Boards of several international and Indian organisations, and as an advisor to several others. She works internationally but is based in Bangalore, India.
Geetha is the Founder-Director of the Srishti School of Art Design and Technology and its sister institution, the Mallya Aditi International School. She has dedicated her life to finding and establishing new models of educational institutions that are creative, synergistic and original in their approach to learning. An administrator, researcher, teacher and facilitator, she has pioneered many courses and projects that examine a wide variety of needs, social and educational. Geetha is the author and principal investigator of Project Vision, an international research initiative that is looking at the development of appropriate instructional strategies and technology-related tools that foster creative cognitive architectures in young children from urban poor communities.
Gopa Kumar Thampi is Director, Economic Governance at The Asia Foundation, Sri Lanka. He has served as Consultant and Governance Advisor in about 20 countries across Africa, Central Asia, East Asia, South Asia, West Asia, and Eastern Europe with development partners, state institutions, public agencies, and civil society organizations focusing on issues of governance and government reform, public accountability, and capacity building. Gopa Kumar Thampi was instrumental in setting up the Global and South Asia hubs of the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability (ANSA), funded by the World Bank Group and based out of the Institute of Governance Studies, BRAC University in Dhaka in 2009 and was the CEO of both hubs until 2011. He was also the former Head of the Asia Desk at the Transparency International Secretariat in Berlin and the Executive Director of the Public Affairs Centre in Bangalore, India. He has a Ph.D in Entrepreneurial Studies, a PG Diploma in Journalism & Communication and an MA in Economics.
Padma M. Sarangapani is Professor of Education, and Chairperson of the Centre for Education, Innovation and Action Research, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. Her areas of research interest include teacher education and elementary education curriculum and pedagogy. She has a PhD in Education from Delhi University and was recipient of the Fulbright predoctoral fellowship (1994-95),the Indira Gandhi Memorial Fellowship (1999-2001) and the Commonwealth Academic Fellowship (2014). She was involved in the development of the B.El.Ed. Programme Delhi University and the MA Education (Elementary) programme now offered by the TISS, Mumbai. She worked as research assistant of the Yashpal Committee (Learning without Burden) and member of the steering committee of the National Curriculum Framework 2005, and member of the National Council of Teacher Education (2013-2015). She has been involved in field action projects and collaboration with state governments. The District Quality Education Project in Karnataka (2002-2007) and currently is project director of the Connected Learning Initiative (CLIx) (2015-ongoing clix.tiss.edu) involving use of technology in high school science and mathematics education and teacher professional development in partnership with the Tata Trusts and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, Cambridge, MA. She has a number of publications in peer reviewed journals, newspapers and magazines. Her publications include Constructing School Knowledge (2003, SAGE) and School Education in India: Markets, State and Quality (2017, Taylor and Francis).
Anita Ratnam is Executive Director, Samvada a Bangalore-based organisation that is dedicated to building youth leadership through its youth resource centres and community college. Anita has been with Samvada for the past 25 years, and has over the years, constantly focused on reinventing the organisation's work so that it stays relevant, nimble and responsive to the changing needs of young people in Indian society. From writing academic papers to columns for newspapers, to conducting discussions with young girls on the politics of marriage in Bangalore colleges, to writing short stories and research reports alongside innovative proposals and reports, Anita has worn multiple hats - that of a scholar, writer, trainer, activist and mentor.
Gayatri Menon is a faculty member of Azim Premji University, whose work focuses on the political economy of development. She has taught at the graduate and post-graduate levels for several years, first at Cornell University and subsequently at Franklin and Marshall College, offering courses in political sociology and on theories, politics and practices of development. She also has extensive experience in the NGO sector, having worked on rural livelihoods and indebtedness in Maharashtra, on agricultural practices and politics in Garhwal, on land tenure and housing rights with a global network of women’s groups, and has served on the board of Aangan Trust for over ten years.
Associate Members of ITfC
Solomon Jayaprakash is Founder and CEO, India Drivers Network (mGAADI). Previously, he was the Country head of Ashoka in India. Solomon also founded MAYA, a Karnataka-based development organisation in 1989 which focused on eradication of child labour, working with communities across slums and low-income areas of Bangalore Urban & Rural districts. In MAYA he worked with public school reforms and early child care using citizen action to change the quality of schools in two states in India and still scaling to reach thousands of schools. He also setup two for-profit enterprises, one is Maya Organic, which works with artisans to develop and market high quality products around the world and another company LabourNet that has a network of urban informal sector workers together using Internet and communications technology to track workers and help them find jobs.
Upendranadh is currently working as Governance thematic lead and project manager with ActionAid Myanmar at Yangon. Previously he was with the international secretariat of ActionAid working as Governance program coordinator. He has over 20 years of field and policy experience in development sector with INGOs focusing on issues of social policy, democratic governance, participatory approaches.
Vijay Bhaskar is an Associate Professor at the Madras Institute for Development Studies, Chennai. While he works broadly on regional political economy of development, his specific research interests include labour processes and labour relations, rural-urban linkages in terms of land and labour markets, and power and governance in value chains.