Deputy Director, South Asia Hub
Dr Smriti Basnett’s concern for society and environment fuels her desire to bring about the changes she wants to see around her. Smriti believes that change can be most effectively wrought by interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches. She works tirelessly to this end through the Future Earth Program at Divecha Centre for Climate Change (DCCC) located in the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. Smriti manages and directs programs for South Asia, pushing for the espousal of the Sustainable Development Goals in national and regional policies. She is currently working to establish Working Groups and Committees on Food Security, Water Security, Clean Air and Health in South Asia for Future Earth. Smriti started her career as a Junior Research Fellow in the Sikkim Glacier Commission from DST-Sikkim, continued her research at ISRO, SAC, Ahmedabad and DCCC, IISc, Bangalore between 2007 and 2016. After her PhD on ‘Glacier and Snow Studies in Sikkim Himalaya’, she worked with Sikkim University and local communities. She led many glacier expeditions, developed the university curriculum and helped establish DST's Centre of excellence on water resources, cryosphere and climate change at Sikkim University. While monitoring glaciers in North Sikkim, Smriti spent a lot of time working with the local communities, conducting science and art awareness programs in various urban and rural schools, documenting narratives on yak herding and trying her hand at the local traditional farming practices. She is a Co-leader in the UNESCO Project, ‘Himalayan Glaciers and Risks to Local Communities’, and conducts training, workshops and capacity development activities in Bhutan, Nepal and Sikkim. Smriti volunteers to work with the rural schools in North Sikkim and also to work with the Indian Himalayan Integrated Mountain Initiative (IMI). Smriti was a Berkner fellow and represented South Asia at the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and an ICIMOD fellow at the HUC-IHCAP glacier training and expedition (2017). Smriti likes skiing, paragliding, hiking, table tennis and running.