Vandana Shiva is a philosopher, environmental activist, eco feminist and author of several books. Shiva, currently based in Delhi, is author of over 300 papers in leading scientific and technical journals. Shiva participated in the nonviolent Chipko movement during the 1970s. The movement, some of whose main participants were women, adopted the approach of forming human circles around trees to prevent their felling. She is one of the leaders of the International Forum on Globalization and a figure of the global solidarity movement known as the alter-globalization movement.
Vandana Shiva has fought for, changes in the practice and paradigms of agriculture and food. Intellectual property rights, biodiversity, biotechnology, bioethics, genetic engineering are among the fields where Shiva has contributed intellectually and through activist campaigns. She has assisted grassroots organizations of the Green movement in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Ireland, Switzerland, and Austria with campaigns against genetic engineering. In 1982, she founded the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology, which led to the creation of Navdanya. Her book, "Staying Alive" helped redefine perceptions of third world women. Shiva has also served as an adviser to governments in India and abroad as well as non governmental organisations, including the International Forum on Globalization, the Women's Environment & Development Organization and the Third World Network.
Vandana Shiva participated in the Stock Exchange of Visions project in 2007.
She is a councilor of the World Future Council
For 20 years now, Dr Vijaya Venkat, founder of the Health Awareness Centre in Mumbai, has been urging people to take health in their own hands and in the process contribute to the welfare of Planet Earth. Her radical views on nutrition, backed by four decades of research on the subject, embody a deeper philosophy that ensures food a pivotal role in ensuring sound health for the individual, the community and the earth. Through her workshops and awareness programmes, she seeks to inspire people to embrace the simple fundamentals that govern health and well-being. While outspoken in her criticism of the food and medical industries that brazenly promote vested interests with scant regard to any altruistic objectives, she whole-heartedly advocates business enterprises rooted in principles that support and protect the community. Her Health Awareness Centre also supplies organic food lunches for individual health requirements and runs an organic farm on earth care principles at Vangni, near Mumbai.
Saraswathi Balgam is the Founding Director of Rhythm & Hues India, a multiple Academy Award® winning studio that specializes in computer animation and visual effects for major Hollywood Feature Films. At the age of 11, Saraswathi was introduced to the magical world of Animation by her father and since then she has tapped into this passion and has been involved in various roles both in Bollywood as well as Hollywood. She has been instrumental in not only building one of the top Visual FX studios in the world in Mumbai and Hyderabad, but has also helped to promote the nascent Indian industry as a serious contender in the global animation and VFX market. To also add that she was very instrumental in designing 2 beautiful offices for Rhythm and Hues Mumbai-Hyderabad. She is very involved in the creative process and as well as Production Management. Saraswathi holds a masters degree in People and Personnel Management. She is currently focusing on building a core creative team which will focus on making Visual FX and Animated films for the Indian markets. Saraswathi is also the President of ASIFA India, a non profit organization, whose goal is to bring together the animation community in India and establish a platform of open sharing and learning for both professionals and budding students. Furthermore, she is the President of Women In Animation in India, another non profit organization that is trying to address how women in their own special way can make a difference by leveraging the art of animation in our communities along side Asifa India.
On a personal note Saraswathi loves to travel in the Himalayas and enjoys understanding "Avdaita Vedanta"
Shanti Harijan today works with Magic Bus Centre for Learning & Development as their Senior Community Co-ordinator and she has been working with the community of Rhea Road area near the docks of Mumbai for the past 20 years, mobilizing various NGO's to come and work in those areas to develop the future of children, women and girls. She single-handedly initiated 30 balwadis across the area and then partnered with NGO's to work towards brightening up the dark future of children in the surrounding areas and communities. Today Shanti is an amazing force behind motivating many parents and their girls in taking up education and sports to positvely change their future.
Prathima is the Founder of the Urbanism think tank “The Urban Vision” which was instituted to inspire next generation urbanization. The Urban Vision focuses on solutions driven research ; advocates best practices in policy and design; facilitates public dialogue on policy choices. She also hosts “The Visionary” show. Prathima is an architect, critic, writer and a TV Journalist. She has been a contributing columnist on architecture, urban development and design with India’s Leading News daily – The Times of India. She has also worked in the Television media and has been a correspondent with France24 – a 24 hour global TV news channel and TF1 where she did news reports and several documentaries on Indian economy, Developmental and Cultural issues. She has also written for the opinion pages of the International Herald Tribune , The Wall Street Journal and has reviewed for the Architecture Record. She has authored a monograph on the works of one of India’s leading architects. She has previously consulted on urban design & urban policy related subjects with architecture and large development firms. She is among the 40 Global Honourees of 2009 in CONSIUSA’s “Young Leaders Program” which is a group of emerging leaders under the age of 40, who have distinguished themselves and have demonstrated leadership qualities and potential in various careers (e.g. business, government, academia, media). Prathima holds a bachelors degree in Architecture.