Avinash Vashistha is the Chairman and Geography Managing Director for Accenture in India. In this role, he is responsible for all Accenture activities in India and for the strategic direction, growth and development of the company’s business in this geography.
Before joining Accenture in January 2011, Avinash was chairman and CEO of Tholons, a global strategic advisory firm for outsourcing, research, investment and education serving Fortune 500 and Global 1000 clients. Earlier in his career, he founded neoIT, an offshore advisory firm, and prior to that, led Nortel’s pioneering outsourcing efforts in India, UK and US.
He started his career with AT&T Bell Labs, USA, is a known thought leader in the industry and co-authored the book "The Offshore Nation".
His experience spans developing and executing strategies for services globalization, skills development and employability across countries in Latin America, Asia, Europe and North America.
Avinash is also an Executive Council member of NASSCOM.
Avinash holds an engineering degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, a master’s in Computer Science from the University of Alberta and an MBA from Arizona.
Matthew was posted to India at the age of 29, as the COO for Cox & Kings. In 1999, Matthew initiated Magic Bus, working with children dwelling on the street outside his office. Having played international rugby for India, he used this as his platform to engage these young men and he started a rugby team called ‘Magic Bus’. The epiphany was the impact on these boys through sport and he resigned from his job in 2001 to work full-time for Magic Bus. Matthew is the CEO of Magic Bus in India, US, Germany and UK, which employs 700 staff and 8000 community mentors delivering to 250,000 children each week. He is also a co-founder of cleartrip.com
Michael was born and raised in a kibbutz in Israel. He has more than 15 years of experience working in ICT, community and rural development projects in India, Indonesia, Cambodia, Nepal, and Israel. Michael worked in the non-profit and for-profit sectors with start-up grassroots organizations, advocacy groups, large international NGOs and commercial enterprises working in developing countries.
Michael worked and lived in Dharamsala between 1998 and 2002 and returned to India in the beginning of 2007 to join a rural connectivity initiative that was one of the main drivers for the creation of RBB. He is also the CEO of AirJaldi.Org, a non-profit organization dedicated to R&D and capacity building work in the field of Wireless networks. Michael holds a B.Sc. in Ag. Econ. from the Hebrew U., Jerusalem, Israel, an MA in Development Studies from the Institute of Social Studies, the Hague, the Netherlands, and an MA in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA.
Michael is based in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India. He is Director, Strategy and Operations of Rural Broadband Pvt. Ltd. and the CEO of AirJaldi Research and Innovation, an India-based nonprofit.
She is a fitness person; does whatever it takes to keep her swinging; golf, horse riding, walking, trekking, gyming, yoga, dancing! She loves connecting people with one another. She has a Bachelors degree in English Literature with a diploma in journalism. She is a recycle buff..hates to throw stuff. Can spend hours repairing a tear, restoring old blankets or shawls, transforming old sheets into kitchen towels, converting place mats and into foot mats. She has a vivid memory for faces, not names. For her, ‘things to do’ get slapped on refrigerators; note pads and pens sit at various points in the house; especially bedside. She is also a trained beautician and used to run a beauty salon for a number of years. She was also in the taxi & trucking trade. She is careful to be kind to those who call her with corporate offers; she listens, and then jovially tells that she is not interested. If life hadn't dealt her right, anyone of them could have been her child.
Shanu is pursuing Ph.D. in design at IIT Kanpur. She’s an architect & is extremely passionate about her work. Shanu won the GE Innovation award for her innovation in wheelchair for disabled people, called ‘Vardaan’. It is a result of her determination to see the innovation not just earn her marks but also find some utility. Innovation gives her a lot of satisfaction. It is her dream to see some child go to school, college or even office in our wheelchair as no place is without barriers.
Paranjoy Guha Thakurta
Paranjoy Guha Thakurta is an independent journalist and an educator. His work experience, spanning more than 35 years, cuts across different media: print, radio, television and documentary cinema. He is a writer, speaker, anchor, interviewer, teacher and commentator in three languages: English, Bengali and Hindi. His main areas of interest are the working of the political economy and the media in India and the world, on which he has authored/co-authored books and directed/produced documentary films. He lectures on these subjects to general audiences and also trains aspiring – and working -- media professionals. He participates frequently in and organizes seminars/conferences, is a regular contributor to newspapers, magazines and websites and is featured on television channels and radio programmes as an anchor as well as an analyst and commentator.
Narendra co-leads MSLGroup India's social media practice. In his current role he helps build and execute social media marketing programs for some of the world's biggest brands. Previously, he has spent 9 years as a journalist in both print and TV. A programmer since the 90s, he has combined his love for communication and technology for as long back as he can remember.
Jessica Mayberry founded Video Volunteers in September, 2003, after spending a year training rural Indian women in filmmaking as a Fellow of the American India Foundation. A videojournalist impressed with the rapid spread of inexpensive cameras around the developing world, Jessica believes that video technology can empower the poor (women especially) to find voice. She has extensive experience on the ground in India training communities in video production, and has since evolved Video Volunteers to emphasize capacity building, sustainability and community ownership. Prior to that Jessica worked in television in New York at Court TV, the Fox News Channel, and CNN. Video Volunteers has won numerous awards: An Echoing Green Fellowship, TED Fellowship, the Stern Business School Business Plan competition, the Knight Foundation’s News Challenge, a Tech Award, and Development Gateway Award Shortlist. It is this year a finalist for the King Baudouin (of Belgium) International Development Prize. Jessica has spoken about Video Volunteers’ work in numerous settings, including Stanford Business School, the NYU and Berkeley Journalism Schools, and Oxford and Canterbury Universities in the UK. She serves on the board of Free the Children, the world’s largest organization of "Children Helping Children" and on the Advisory Council of Counterpart International. She received her BA in Modern History and Modern Languages from Oxford University in 1999.
Ashwin Mohan renounced violence in 2010 after two decades of surviving real life violence and tournament kickboxing and grappling. The lessons Ashwin learned were simple. Avoid violence but if you can't, evade it. If evasion fails, de-escalate it and if that fails stun your threat and run. By practicing fighting we are only laying the foundations for a fight. By practicing avoidance, evasion, de-escalation and stunning we are transforming our internal violence into lasting inner and outer peace. Ashwin's company Walk in Peace is involved in the wide distribution of this training called 'peaceful kickboxing' on a permanent basis in urban and rural India."
Kuhu Kochar is a young communication design professional. Having graduated from the National Institute of Fashion Technology, Delhi, she has been the brain behind many a successful campaigns. Driven by the belief that 'Design creates change' recently, Kochar started her own company Paper Cuts, which offers integrated solutions for clients' diverse design needs. Describing it as a 'one stop shop', Kochar is in the process of mastering all the aspects that go into making a brand that does what it needs to, without the waste of frills and trims. At TEDx Jaipur, Kuhu will be talking about the ever growing, irksome epidemic of 'too much information', and the immediate need to address this overload through design interventions. Kochar believes that even if it is not possible to stop all the excess information, the least designers and presenters owe to society is to streamline it.
Born in Jaipur, India, Prateek grew up playing the guitar and training vocally in Indian classical music. His influences are eclectic and range from Elliot Smith and Nick Drake to Jimi Hendrix and Pearl Jam. His musical ability enables him to play the ukelele, drums, bass and harmonica. Having spent years practicing and navigating vastly different musical genres during his time spent studying in New York, he arrived at a sense of direction after attending a jazz workshop in Prague where he began fusing different styles to each his own unique sound. A sound which is evidently distinct when one listens to his acoustic blend of pop rock and poetic folk. His heartfelt lyrics are an insight into the human condition and delve from life's everyday thoughts and experiences, while his tunes and deep rhythms wrap the words gently into song.