Team

Payal Arora (Founder) is a Professor and Chair in Technology, Values, and Global Media Cultures at Erasmus University Rotterdam. Her expertise lies in user experience among low-income communities worldwide and inclusive design, and comes with more than two decades of fieldwork experience in such contexts. She is the author of a number of award winning books including the “The Next Billion Users” with Harvard Press. Forbes named her the “next billion champion” and the right kind of person to reform tech. Several international media outlets have covered her work including the BBC, The Economist, Quartz, Tech Crunch, The Boston Globe, F.A.Z, The Nation and CBC. She has spoken at and/or consulted on tech innovation in the Global South for diverse organizations such as Google, Spotify, Adobe, IDEO, KPMG, GE, UNHCR, and HP and has given more than 300 talks in 67 countries including TEDx talks on innovation and digital futures. She has degrees from Harvard University and Columbia University in international policy and language, literacy and technology respectively. She has held Fellow positions at Bellagio Rockefeller, GE, ZEMKI, ITSRio, MICA, and NYU and sits on many boards including Columbia University’s Earth Institute, Soteryx, Makeosity, UNESCO, and World Women Global Council in New York. She is Irish, American, and Indian and calls Amsterdam her home.

Usha Raman (Founder) is a Professor in the Department of Communication, where her teaching and research interests focus on digital culture, feminist media studies, civic engagement and media pedagogy. Before moving into academia, she worked for several years as a freelance journalist and health communication practitioner. Her PhD, from the University of Georgia, explored the role of new communication technologies in the formation of scientific communities. She has over 30 research papers and book chapters and is author of Writing for Media (Oxford University Press, 2009). She has consulted with UNICEF-India on several health communication projects and is currently an honorary professorial fellow of The George Institute for Global Health. In 2013, she was the recipient of an International Collaborative Research Grant from the University of Sydney, Australia and in 2016, she was a Fulbright Faculty Fellow at the Comparative Media Studies program at MIT, where she engaged closely with the Center for Civic Media at the MIT Media Lab. In November 2019 she was a visiting fellow at the ZeMKI Centre for Media, Communication and Information Research at the University of Bremen, Germany. She edits Teacher Plus, a monthly magazine for school teachers, and is a columnist for The Hindu, one of India’s largest newspapers. Usha is Vice-President of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR)


Affiliates

Sai Amulya Komarraju
(IDRC Researcher)
Pallavi Bansal
(IDRC Researcher)
Chinar Mehta
(IDRC Researcher)
Siddharth Peter de Souza
(IDRC Researcher)
Daniela Jaramillo-Dent
(IDRC Media Coordinator/Director)
Ezgi Aktuğ
(Digital Campaign Manager)
Mar-Dec
Shweta Mahendra Chandrashekhar
(IDRC Researcher)
Manisha Pathak-Shelat
(Advisor)
Upasana Bhattacharjee
(Junior Fellow)
Soumita Basu
(IDRC Fellow)
Sharmi Surianarain
(IDRC Fellow)
Laura Herman
(Fellow)
Paula Wittenburg
(Intern)
Sept-Dec 2021
René König
(IDRC Project manager/ Media Editor)
Jan 2020-Dec 2021
Mohammad Sahid Ullah
(IDRC Senior Researcher)
Jan 2020-Dec 2021
Rawshon Akhter
(IDRC Junior Researcher)
Jan 2020-Dec 2021
Linnea Holter Thompson
(IDRC Junior Researcher)
2018-2019
Brinda Gupta
(IDRC Intern)
April-May 2021
Samarth Gupta
(Intern)
July-Dec 2020
Gargi
(Digital Creativity
Assistant Researcher)
Kiran Bhatia
(Digital Creativity
Lead Researcher)
Trupti
(Masterclass
Influencer)
Stuti Dalal
(Digital Creativity Assistant
Researcher)
Mohit
(Digital Creativity
Videographer)
Shruti Singhal
(Event Organizer/Editor)
Siddhi Gupta
(Designer/Researcher)
Zothan Mawii
(Researcher)
Daniel Greene
(Researcher)