Dr Hemant R Ojha (Chair) – Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Canberra, Australia
Dr received an Undergraduate in forestry, two Master’s in economics and natural resources management, and a PhD in environmental policy and governance. He has devoted his career to design and deliver integrated environmental solutions to some of the pressing problems of our time such as deforestation, climate vulnerability, watershed degradation and poverty, by undertaking applied research, social and environmental assessments, design thinking and deliberative planning, and policy analysis and engagement. His work spans multiple environmental sub-sectors, including forestry, biodiversity, water management, agriculture, and climate change. He has worked in diverse contexts and various regions, including parts of Australia, Asia, and Africa. He has worked on the ground (e.g. doing forest biodiversity monitoring, socio-environmental assessments, and community engagement), at national policy domains (e.g. sitting in the Government policy task forces), and at the global community (e.g. participating in global expert panels and publishing research in scientific journals). He is one of the key thought leader and action researchers innovating Nepal’s community forestry system which is now widely recognised as a global innovation in sustainability transition. He has published five books from Routledge, Cambridge, and other well-respected publishers. On ‘research into use domains’, He have been invited as an expert to contribute, design and evaluate programs funded by major Australiana and international environment and development agencies, including: Australian ACIAR, DFAT, the UK DFID, Norwegian NORAD, USAID, and Canadian IDRC. He am an editor of Elsevier Journal Forest Policy and Economics, and have served as a scientific reviewer for over 20 international journals published by Elsevier, Cambridge, and Springer.
Prof David Seddon (Member), former professor of University of East Anglia, UKand Director of Critical Faculty, a UK based international consultancy.
Prof David Seddon has worked for over 40 years as a researcher, writer and consultant in the developing world, mainly in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. He has worked for the World Bank, ILO, IFAD, UNRISD, DFID, DANIDA, USAID, SATA and also for Christian Aid, OXFAM, Action Aid, One World International, War on Want, Danchurchaid and the Lutheran World Federation. Formerly Professor of Politics & Sociology in the School of Development Studies at the University of East Anglia (UEA), he has also been Managing Director of the Overseas Development Group (a non-profit consultancy organisation) at UEA and, until recently, Principal of South London College. He is currently Director of Critical Faculty, an independent consultancy specialising in global issues and risk analysis, and a senior research associate at the Commonwealth Studies Policy Unit. A long-standing member of the Labour Party, he has recently joined the Greens.
Prof Brian Purdey (Member), former professor of University of Sunshine Coast, Australia
Prof Purdey has BE, MBA and PhD. He is an innovative thought leader, researcher, author and presenter in strategic management. He has significant industry experience in business strategic planning and change management. He has highly developed interpersonal and communication skills. His approach to teaching and learning is heavily influenced by my significant experience both in business and through living and teaching overseas. This approach is one of mentoring and apprenticeship, seeing my role as a leader facilitating the transmission and building of knowledge for individuals and groups, framing it to serve practical or useful purposes. This demands proceeding in stages from the simpler to the more complex while simultaneously translating from the more complex to understandable, most often involving a blend of western and eastern perspectives.
Dr Dinesh Paudel (Member), faculty member, Appalachian State University
Dinesh Paudel is an Assistant Professor in the Sustainable Development Department at Appalachian State University. Before coming to Appalachian, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Geography at Dartmouth College where he taught courses on Environment and Development, Geographies of Protest and Revolution, and Gender and Development. He received his PhD in Geography from the University of Minnesota in 2012 where he studied the historical connections between international development programs and the rise of Maoist uprisings in Nepal. Broadly, he is interested in understanding how development discourses originate and travel, and how they articulate with economic, ecological and political processes at multiple scales. One of his current research projects focuses in exploring the inherent relationships and complex entanglements between the rising Asian economies, growing environmental degradations and rapidly expanding rebellious politics in South Asia.
Dr Chandra Pandey, Kathmandu University
Dr. Pandey is a member of faculty in the Department of Development Studies, Kathmandu University. He has over 15 years of working experience in South Asia, particularly in Nepal, India and Bangladesh. He has an extensive working experience in the fields of institution and governance, community based disaster management, environmental crisis and management including climate change and water, and capacity/resilience building. He has also extensive experience in action and traditional research methods, designs and analysis, institutional analysis, participatory planning, deliberative stakeholder engagement, community development, project management, and partnership development with various tiers of government institutions, think tank organizations, NGOs and universities. He has worked on several projects that have focused on the crosscutting themes of disaster management, reconstruction, environment, climate adaptation, water policy, and resilience building of community, capacity building of national and local government institutions, and sustainable development. His core research interests are at the center of institution and goverance and sustainable development inclusive of community based disaster management and institutional challenges and opportunities in the domains of environmental affairs, climate adapatation, transboundary water, water security, social justice, disaster, reconstruction and resilience building. His track record of high quality publication is significant. His books include Environmental Security in the Asia-Pacific; Why REDD will Fail etc. He has also published several research articles in a number of leading international peer-reviewed journals including the journal Global Environmental Politics. His recent book chapter is on ‘The 2015 Nepal Earthquake: From Rescue to Reconstruction. He also supervises Masters, MPhil and PhD students in the areas of his expertise.
Dr Basundhara Bhattarai, Institute for Studies and Development Worldwide (IFSD), Sydney, Australia
Dr Bhattarai is an internationally recognised specialist on gender and development. She considers gender justice across a range of international development sectors – including natural resources management, rural livelihoods, urban poverty, agriculture and food security, disaster risk reduction, water security and resilience building, small and community-based enterprises, infrastructure development, and health and development. Her gender works span research, development practice, training, program monitoring and evaluation, policy analysis, and women empowerment. She has served as a specialist/consultant for a number of national organisations in Australia and development agencies internationally, including DFAT, USAID, DFID, IFAD, and IDRC. She is a senior gender and development consultant at IFSD Sydney, and is actively contributing to University of Queensland’s professional training program on gender, development and humanitarian assistance. She has served as a senior researcher for a project on climate change, urbanisation and water security in India and Nepal in collaboration with the Canadian IDRC. She has also served as Gender Specialist at International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD). Her research has been well recognised in the academia and used in graduate seminars in some US Universities. She recently completed a major assignment for United Nations FAO on a global review of forestry sector from SDG Goal 5 (Gender) lens and developed recommendations for FAO. She is also an actively sought-after counsellor of gender based domestic violence among Asian diasporic communities in Australia.