Indicus Foundation is a highly regarded change-maker. It was set up in 2011 and builds on the heritage of Indicus Analytics known globally as India’s premier research and analytics firm. Indicus seeks to catalyse change towards a more inclusive and sustainable world. It does so by building common spaces of well-informed dialogue and conducting a range of activities aimed at a three-pronged approach of better monitoring, greater knowledge, and improved awareness. This is done through newsletters, workshops, analytical reports, and different forms of digital and monitoring technologies. Indicus is led by Dr. Laveesh Bhandari and brings together highly respected academics, policymakers, thought-leaders, and managers through its deep global networks.

Dr. Laveesh Bhandari is an empirical economist, environment evangelist, and entrepreneur and focuses his attention almost exclusively on solutions towards improving the environment. He is currently the President of Indicus Foundation and leads its Environment and Sustainable Livelihoods initiative.

Laveesh has rich published research output to his credit pertaining to sustainable livelihoods, industrial, economic and social reforms in India, economic geography, and financial inclusion.

He received his Ph.D. in economics from Boston University for which he was awarded the Best thesis in International Economics. He has taught economics at Boston University and IIT Delhi, has been the managing editor of the Journal of Emerging Market Finance, and worked at the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), New Delhi. He has built, seeded and exited from three companies in the research, analytics, and digital domain.

HONORARY ADVISORS


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Ajay Chibber


Dr. Ajay Chibber is the Chief Economic Advisor of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), supervising its economic policy research. He has been a visiting scholar of Elliot School of International Affairs, Washington DC and a distinguished professor of National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, New Delhi. He holds a PhD from Stanford University. Dr. Chibber worked with the World Bank from 1983 till 2008. He was also the Director-General, Independent Evaluation Office, Government of India. Chhibber has published widely, including five books on economic development and many articles in international journals and in major newspapers.


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Anumita Roychowdhury


Anumita Roychowdhury is the Executive Director – Research and Advocacy and the head of the air pollution and clean transportation programme at the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE). She has been deeply involved in building the public campaign, Right to Clean Air at CSE. The campaign is aimed at improving the decision-making process related to air quality planning and mobility management, and raise public awareness in India. Anumita is also a strong campaigner for public health and has researched and published widely on these subjects, including the series in Citizens Report on the State of India’s Environment. Her co-authored book, ‘Slow Murder: The deadly story of vehicular pollution in India’ catalysed the clean air campaign in CSE.


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Monika Halan


Monika Halan is a trusted personal finance writer, speaker and author who helps families get their money decisions right. She is the author of the bestselling book " Let’s Talk Money ". She is an MA in Economics from the Delhi School of Economics and in Journalism Studies from University of Wales. She has worked across media organisations and run four successful TV series. She is a regular speaker on financial literacy, regulation, inclusion and consumer issues in retail finance. She was an advisor to the Swarup Committee, a member on the Bose Committee, a member on the Task Force of the Financial Redressal Agency and is a member on the SEBI Mutual Fund Committee. She is the author of three published academic papers in the field of household finance. Halan is based in New Delhi and was a Yale World Fellow in 2011.


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Nitin Desai


Dr. Nitin Desai is a distinguished economist and sustainable development advocate. Currently, he is the Chairman of the Governing Council at The Energy and Resource Institute (TERI). Dr. Desai was a part of the Planning Commission (1973-88) and served as the Chief Economic Advisor and Secretary in the Ministry of Finance (1988-90). He was also the Senior Economic Advisor for the World Commission on Environment and Development (the Brundtland Commission). He was the Under-Secretary General for Economic and Social Affairs in the UN. He oversaw the creation of the Commission on Sustainable Development in the UN, and was the first Under Secretary General for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development.


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R Gopalan


R. Gopalan has experience in both government and business sphere. He served in various capacities in the ministry of Finance and Ministry of Commerce. He contributed to the creation of various schemes like Swabhiman for Financial Inclusion, Swavalamban for Insurance for people from the unorganized sector, Central Registry for deduplication of documents of property purchase and establishment of Infra Debt Fund. He was part of government teams in trade negotiations in WTO and FTAs. In Tamil Nadu, he was Chairman of Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation Ltd and TIDEL Park Ltd. Post-retirement, R. Gopalan is serving on the boards of automotive, power, and finance companies. He chairs an Asset Reconstruction Company and Zee Entertainment Enterprises.


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Rakesh Mohan


Dr. Rakesh Mohan is one of the most revered Indian economists and the former Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India. He is the Vice Chairperson of Indian Institute of Human Settlements, before which he held positions of Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Non-Executive Director of Nestle India. He has been an advisor to many ministries in the Government of India and his report under the Rakesh Mohan Committee on Infrastructure is still considered a landmark document in the evolution of thinking on economic policy issues. He earned his PhD in Economics from Princeton University and has to his credit three books on urban economics and development and numerous other articles.


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Ravina Raj Kohli


Prior to being a leading environment activist, Ravina was the President of Star News India, Country Head of Channel 9 and Senior Vice President at Sony Entertainment Television. Being a strong crusader for clean air in India, she founded MyRightToBreathe (MRTB), a concerned citizen’s network. As its chief spokesperson, she represented this movement at the World Health Organisation’s global conference on Air Pollution and Health. Ravina currently leads MRTB’s work on amplifying the digital presence of a common citizen’s voice against air pollution and environmental apathy. The movement facilitates behaviour change through school-based programmes, provides evidence for policy making and implementation of solutions at the grassroots that will help improve overall environmental health in India.


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SUMITA KALE


Dr. Sumita Kale is a financial and macro-economist. She works extensively on financial inclusion, leading the Indicus Centre for Financial Inclusion since 2011. She has numerous research publications and opeds in major newspapers. Sumita has an MPhil in Economics of Developing Countries from the University of Cambridge and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Pune. She has worked at various reputed institutions such as Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics, National Insurance Academy, and the Department of Economics, University of Pune. Sumita also has a keen interest in urban environmental issues.


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V. Anantha Nageswaran


Dr. V. Anantha Nageswaran is a writer, author, teacher and consultant. He has taught a Graduate Course in Macroeconomics and exchange rates at the Singapore Management University Wealth Management and Applied Finance programmes between 2014 and 2021. Also, teaches or taught at the Essec Business School Campus in Singapore, the SP Jain Centre for Management in Singapore, the Indian Institutes of Management in Bengaluru and in Indore, Meghnad Desai Academy of Economics and the IFMR Graduate School of Business at Krea University.

He is an Honorary Senior Advisor to the International Financial Services Authority of India. He served in the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India for two years from 2019 to 2021. He is on the Board of a few companies of the TVS Group.

He has co-authored four books:

  1. The Rise of Finance – Causes, Consequences and Cures
  2. Derivatives
  3. Can India Grow?
  4. The Economics of Derivatives

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