Program Advisors

Our Program Advisors include:

  • Dr. Bhavik Bakshi,
    Ohio State University, USA and TERI University, India.

    Bhavik R. Bakshi is a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Research Director of the Center for Resilience at The Ohio State University. Over the last decade, he has held visiting and full-time appointments at various institutions in India. His research is developing scientifically rigorous methods for improving the sustainability and efficiency of technological activities. This includes new methods for analyzing the life cycle of existing and emerging technologies, ways of designing systems based on mimicking nature, and developing integrated models of industrial, ecological and economic systems for supporting corporate and government policies. A major focus of his research has been on understanding and including the role of ecosystem services in industrial activities. This multidisciplinary research overlaps with areas such as thermodynamics, applied statistics, ecology, economics, and complexity theory. Applications include nanotechnology, green chemistry, alternate fuels, and waste utilization. He has over 150 peer-reviewed publications, and a recent edited volume on “Thermodynamics and the Destruction of Resources.” His work has been recognized through awards from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the U.S. National Science Foundation, and several best paper awards at various conferences. Professor Bakshi has lectured extensively and taught executive education courses in topics related to corporate sustainability in the US and India. Prof. Bakshi received his Bachelor of Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Bombay, MS in Chemical Engineering Practice and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While in graduate school, he also completed a minor in Technology and Environmental Policy and conducted research at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.


  • Dr. L S Ganesh,
    Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India .

    Dr. L .S. Ganesh (LSG) is the Dean of Students at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras. He has an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) at Pilani, Rajasthan and a M. Tech and Ph. D degree from IIT, Madras. Since 1987, he worked in the Industrial Engineering and Management Faculty at IIT Madras. He served as the Head of the Department of Management Studies at IIT Madras from July 2004 till July 2008.
    LSG has supervised the research works of more than 25 masters-level and doctoral scholars, and more than 100 projects of post-graduate students. Three of his doctoral students have won International and national awards for their Theses in the areas of Technology Management and Knowledge Management respectively. One of his research students won the “Budding Innovator” award of the National Research and Development Council, Government of India.
    He is interested in basic research in the areas of Systems Modeling and Analysis, Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, and Forecasting, and applied research in the areas of Project, Technology, Knowledge, Operations, and Public Systems Management. Dr. Ganesh has served as the Secretary and Vice President of the Society of Operations Management, and as a Vice President of the Product Development Management Association. He served as a member of the Academic Advisory Council of the Project Management Institute (India) and of the Advisory Board of The Chennai Fund, an initiative of The indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) aimed at promoting new ventures by extending seed fund and business incubation support. He also serves as a member of the Governing/Academic Councils and Boards of Studies of several reputed educational Institutions. He has been invited to serve as a Director on the Boards of a few new companies engaged in novel business models. He coordinates the pioneering and unique MS (Entrepreneurship) programme of IIT Madras and until recently was the Professor-in-charge of the Cell for Technology Innovation, Development and Entrepreneurship Support (C-TIDES). He has served as an organizer, resource person and jury member in international business ideas/plans competitions organized separately in the areas of technology, social and biomedical entrepreneurship (named BreakThrough, Genesis, and Panacea respectively) by IIT Madras for undergraduate and post graduate students. He has served as a jury member in national-level business ideas/plans competitions organized by leading national institutions and public sector organizations, and also in the annual awards Committees of the CII, L-RAMP and MMA.
    Dr. Ganesh is an accomplished rock, blues and jazz vocalist and rhythm guitarist. In his student days, he won many prizes in music competitions, debates and sports. Dr. Ganesh loves work, meditation, philosophy, music and dreaming.


  • Mr. Mehmood Khan,
    Rasuli Kanwar Khan Trust, India.

    Mehmood Khan has over 34 years of experience at Unilever in various international positions with postings in India, The Netherlands, Singapore and United Kingdom. He retired as the Global Leader of Innovation Process from Unilever London in 2009. He has travelled to over 70 countries in 5 continents.He has an undergraduate degree in BSc (Hons) Agriculture and a Post Graduate Diploma from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Ahmedabad.He has worked on development related issues at IIM-A, Bharatiya Agro Industries Foundation and Punjab Cooperatives. He is the Founder President of the IIM Network in Europe.
    Mehmood Khan is the Managing Trustee of Rasuli Kanwar Khan Trust Nai Nangla, which is transforming lives in rural Mewat. Sanobar, his wife, partners with him on all the development related initiatives. He is a natural leader with a demonstrated track record of leading people and communities. He was nominated as Person of the Year by Forbes India.
    His key areas of interest include education, water, employment generation, governance, globalization, innovation and sustainability.


  • Dr. Ted London,
    William Davidson Institute, University of Michigan, USA .

    Ted London is a Senior Research Fellow at the William Davidson Institute and a member of the faculty at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. An internationally recognized expert on the intersection of business strategy and poverty alleviation, London focuses his research on designing enterprise strategies and poverty-alleviation approaches for low-income markets, developing capabilities for new market entry, building cross-sector collaborations, and assessing the poverty-reduction outcomes of business ventures.His numerous articles, chapters, reports and teaching cases emphasize creating new knowledge with actionable implications. His 2009 article in the Harvard Business Review,“Making Better Investments at the Base of the Pyramid,” has helped launch a new perspective on working with the world’s poor to enhance mutual value creation. His 2011 book with Stuart Hart, “Next Generation Business Strategies for the Base of the Pyramid,” provides fresh insights on building scalable, profitable ventures that can truly help alleviate poverty.
    Over the past two decades, London has also directed or advised dozens of leadership teams in the corporate, non-profit, and development sectors on designing and implementing on-the-ground business strategies in low-income markets. He serves on the advisory boards for a variety of organizations and worked with dozens of partners including Acumen Fund, Aspen Institute, CARE, CEMEX, Coca-Cola, Department for International Development (DFID), DuPont, Gates Foundation, GE Healthcare, GTZ, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Microsoft, Pfizer, Rockefeller Foundation, SC Johnson, Unilever, UNDP, and USAID. In addition, London continues to share his latest thinking as a keynote speaker in venues around the world.
    Before coming to the University of Michigan, London served on the faculty at the University of North Carolina, where he also received his Ph.D. in strategic management. Prior to that, he held senior management positions in private, non-profit, and development sectors on three continents.


  • Dr. Ravi Nair,
    Engineers India, Ltd (Ret), Mumbai, India.

    Dr. Ravi Nair has over 35 years of experience in the industry and academics. He specializes in the fields of strategy and marketing and has worked in diverse fields like academics, consultancy, marketing, project management and research & development (new service/product launches).Ravi has completed his doctorate from UBS, Chandigarh in the field of supply chain management in fertilizer distribution, management degree from the prestigious Faculty of Management Studies, Delhi University and chemical engineering from IIT Delhi.
    Ravi has had a varied experience working in various capacities in the corporate sector, and in academics. He spent around 25 years in Engineers India (a leading Govt.of india owned entity in project management consultancy) where he held positions in the fields of project management, marketing and strategy. During his tenure in Engineers India, he worked in several industries inter-alia Environmental, Oil & Gas, Fertilizers, Metallurgy and Heavy Engineering. Further, in 2005 when he took up the course in Doctorate, Ravi started teaching Strategy and Marketing in colleges based out of Chandigarh, Hyderabad and Bangalore. He has also worked with a Financial Services firm for a duration of one and a half years, where he was Director R&D responsible for new product launches and educating new investors in wealth management.


  • Priya Naik

    Samhita, Mumbai, India.

    Priya Naik is the CEO at Samhita Social Ventures. Samhita evolved from Priya’s work with the Nadathur family’s social initiatives in the areas of nature conservation, art, education for differently-abled children, and livelihood generation through microenterprise.

    Prior to working with Nadathur’s family office, Priya co-founded The Spark Group, an education company that delivered affordable education to low income communities. At Spark, Priya helped define strategy, created the business plan and was also instrumental in raising funds from IFMR Trust.

    Priya’s interest in social entrepreneurship began when she worked as a Researcher at the Poverty Action Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, USA. At MIT, Priya was part of two student-led start-ups – Aerovax, a company that created safe, inhalable aerosol vaccines that could be delivered without the use of needles and Kalpataru, a company that delivered innovative, low-cost technology to increase the efficiency of microfinance institutions. Kalpataru’s pilot was tested with the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh and was presented to Nobel laureate, Dr Muhammad Yunus. Both social enterprises won several awards at MIT.
    Priya has worked as a consultant with the International Finance Corporation in Africa. She started her career in Accounting at Arthur Andersen in Mumbai.
    Priya has a Masters. in Economics from Yale University, USA, a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA and a Masters in Commerce from Mumbai University where she stood first in the entire graduating class.


  • Prof. Nic Retsinas,
    Harvard Business School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

    Nicolas P. Retsinas is a Senior Lecturer in Real Estate at the Harvard Business School where he teaches courses in housing finance and real estate in frontier markets. Mr. Retsinas is also Director Emeritus of Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, a collaborative venture of the Graduate School of Design and the Harvard Kennedy School, and a Lecturer in Housing Studies at the Graduate School of Design.Prior to his Harvard appointment, Retsinas served as Assistant Secretary for Housing-Federal Housing Commissioner at the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development and as Director of the Office of Thrift Supervision. Mr. Retsinas also served on the Board of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Housing Finance Board and the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation. He received a Meritorious Service Award from the US Treasury Department in 1997. He also received the Excellence in Public Service Award from the Rental Housing Association in 1998 and the Housing Leadership Award from the National Low Income Housing Coalition in 2001. He is in the National Housing Hall of Fame and was named one of the most influential people in real estate by the National Association of Realtors, in home building by BUILDER magazine, and in multifamily housing by Multi-Housing News. In 2008, he was inducted into the Affordable Housing Hall of Fame and in 2009 was named by BUILDER magazine as one of the top 30 innovators in the home building industry in the past 30 years. In 2010, Bloomberg Business Week named him one of the 50 most powerful people in real estate. In 2011, Inman News named him as one of the 100 most influential real estate leaders and the National Housing Conference named him Person of the Year.
    Mr. Retsinas also served the State of Rhode Island as the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation from 1987 to 1993. He received his master’s degree in city planning from Harvard University and his AB in economics from New York University. In 2008, he received an honorary Doctorate in Public Service from Rhode Island College. Mr. Retsinas serves on the Board of Trustees for Enterprise Community Partners, and is on the Board of Directors of Community Development Trust, Inc., Freddie Mac, and the Center for Responsible Lending. He is a past Chair of the Board of Directors of Habitat for Humanity International.Mr. Retsinas has lectured and written extensively on housing, community development and banking issues. He has co-edited Low-Income Homeownership: Examining the Unexamined Goal (2002), Building Assets, Building Credit: Creating Wealth in Low-Income Communities (2005), Revisiting Rental Housing: Policies, Programs, and Priorities (2008), Borrowing to Live: Consumer and Mortgage Credit Revisited (2008) and Moving Forward: The Future of Consumer Credit and Mortgage Finance (2011). He has also co-authored Opportunity and Progress: A Bipartisan Platform for National Housing Policy (2004) and Our Communities, Our Homes: Pathways to Housing and Homeownership in America’s Cities and States (2007). He is a Fellow at the National Academy for Public Administration.


  • Dr. Pramodita Sharma,
    Professor, University of Vermont and Babson College, USA.

    Dr. Pramodita Sharma (Dita) recently joined as the Sanders Professor for Family Business at the School of Business Administration, University of Vermont. Prior to this appointment, she was the CIBC Distinguished Professor of Family Business at the John Molson School of Business, Concordia University in Montreal.Dita is a visiting scholar at the Babson College where she serves as the Academic Director of the Global Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship Practices (STEP) project. Engaging over 175 scholars in 41 countries this global applied research initiative explores the entrepreneurial processes within business families and generates solutions that have immediate application for family leaders.
    Her research on the succession processes, governance, innovation, and the unique dynamics underlying family firms has been honored with several international awards including the NFIB Best Dissertation award from the Entrepreneurship division of the Academy of Management. Most recently, in 2011, she was honored with the prestigious Barbara Hollander award at the 25th anniversary conference of the Family Firm Institute.
    Supported by various private and government agencies, her research is well received both in academic and practitioner outlets. She is amongst the most frequently cited scholars in family business studies. In addition to two co-authored books, she has published about fifty scholarly articles and book chapterson family business studies. Her most recent co-authored (w. Frank Hoy) book on Entrepreneurial Family Firms is currently being used in family business courses around the world and has been translated into Mandarin and Greek.
    Sharma is active in leadership and advisory roles in a number of professionalassociations. She serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the Family Business Review (FBR) – the only SSCI listed journal devoted exclusively to exploration of the dynamics of family-controlled enterprise of all sizes run by founders or later generational leaders. FBR is a Top 20 Business journal. Dita is the co-founder of the Family Enterprise Research Conference. Now, in its eighth year, this annual conference attracts leading family business scholars from around the world.
    Sharma maintains close links with the business community. She is a frequent speaker at gatherings of family business leaders around the world. This interaction enables her to share insights from evidence based research with practitioners while ensuring that her research remains focused on issues of significant importance to the family business community. Experiences and close interactions with her own family’s enterprises help keep her professional work rooted into the realties and complex dynamics of these fascinating enterprises that dominate the economic and societal landscape around the world.


  • Vishnu Swaminathan,
    Ashoka, Bangalore, India.

    Vishnu Swaminathan is presently the Director of Housing for All program at Ashoka in India. He oversees the program, which is working on increasing the supply of affordable housing for low-income communities in India on market-based models. The program has reached 6 cities, catalyzing around 10,000 homes in a short period of 2 years. Before Ashoka, Vishnu co-founded and led two companies working on financial transactions and animation technology in Singapore for 8 years. After one of the companies was acquired he moved to India to head a leadership school based in Pune, where he led the school’s social effort by creating a independent Centre for Social Development and Governance.He started his career as a 3D and Film Special effects artist, later turning towards project management. He holds couple of patents from his ventures and has worked on a wide range of domains, technologies, projects, training and strategic business models. He lives with his family in Bangalore, India and enjoys photography.


  • Dr. Vinod Vyasulu,
    Indian Institute for Human Settlement, Bengaluru, India.

    Dr. Vinod Vyasulu is a research advisor for the Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore. Dr. Vyasulu has taught at the Universidad de las Americas in Mexico, the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, and XLRI Jamshedpur. While at the School of Business in the University of Florida, Gainesville, he was part of the Centre for Latin American Studies and earned a certificate in conjunction with the Ph.D in economics in Latin American studies.Dr. Vyasulu held the Reserve Bank of Chair Professorship in the Institute for Social and Economics Change. He has also been Director, Institute of Public Enterprise, Hyderabad and Economic Advise to the National Small Industries Corporation. He was co-convenor with Amulya Kumar N Reddy of the 4 volume set of Essays on Bangalore (1984).Dr. Vyasulu has taken up consulting assignments with various agencies on ongoing economic issues and development projects in the last 15 years. He has worked with ILO, World Bank, UNDP, various bilateral agencies, and public and private institutions in India.
    In 1998, Dr. Vyasulu set up the Centre for Budget and Policy Studies, Bangalore and was its Director till December 2010. He has taken part in programs of the Forum of Federations, Canada, and presented a paper at the 4th Global Conference in Delhi.
    Dr. Vyasulu is working on decentralized planning, focusing on district planning centers in order to locate data collection and estimation at the local level which will then inputs for local plans within the framework of large state plans.
    Dr. Vyasulu is a life-member of The Indian Econometric Society, The Indian Economic Association, The Indian Society of Labour Economics, The Indian Agricultural Economics Association, The Indian Association for Research in National Income and Wealth. The AP Economic Association, The Karnataka Economics Association, The Indian Institute of Public Administration and The Institute for Social and Economic Change.