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Ajita Tiwari Padhi

Company/NGO Name:

Indian Network on Ethics and Climate Change (INECC)

Researcher, Tata Institute of Social sciences (TISS), Mumbai

Region, Country:

New Delhi/ Mumbai, India

1. What is the mission of your company/NGO?

INECC strives to bring ‘Peoples’ Voices in Policy Choices’. It endeavors to facilitate the voice of the marginalized majority from specific local ecosystem contexts to be considered for a policy decision. INECC works with a mission to address climate justice issues, promotes values of environmental ethics in sustainable development discourses and actions with a variety of stakeholders – students, teachers, government officials, corporates, and CSOs.


2. What is the most innovative or environmentally/socially impactful project/practice your company/NGO has implemented?

Members of the network have been involved with several innovative and impactful projects. Our work to promote climate-friendly technologies especially biosand water filters and ‘smokeless stoves’, hydrams and gravity flow need special mention as these have created impacts at the Micro level leading to the overall wellbeing of the Adivasi community where such projects have been implemented. One of our partner, Laya, is implementing an Improved Cook-stove Project under the Gold Standard Community-Focused Micro Scale Scheme which has been financed through carbon revenues. (https://cdm.unfccc.int/public)


3. How have those projects positively impacted the local community and/ or your country?

Such small-scale projects go a long way in bringing about dual benefits of carbon reduction and real development. These have particularly helped women of these areas by reducing the drudgery involved in either fetching fuelwood or water from the local streams. Hydrams are being used not only for local irrigation needs of households but supplementing drinking water needs too. Such projects which are small, locally adapted and owned make these project sustainable unlike large and modern projects like RO technologies for drinking and stoves initiatives that have failed.

Such projects demonstrate that real development is possible with reduction of emissions.


4. Please share any new projects you will be implementing in the near future.

  • We are developing a package of practices for resilience building among the marginalized communities across ecosystems.
  • We are also looking to develop a framework for sustainable production and consumption across ecosystem communities in India.
  • Developing curriculums for climate education


5. What are your top 3 career accomplishments?

I quit my corporate job, more than a decade ago to work with a grassroots NGO in the tribal region in India.

To me accomplishments have been when I played a role in bringing light to people! Especially to communities who were perpetually in the dark; empowering youth and women with information and action on climate change and sustainable development. For me, accomplishments have been when actions are taken post my interventions. For eg: a school (Loreto Convent, Delhi) goes ahead and puts a solar rooftop in the school building, increase green cover with local species; when children talk about carbon audits and footprints. We work at the micro level and my accomplishments are micro too!
6. What inspired you to choose your career path?

Coming from a tribal region myself, I was deeply affected by the deprivations that I saw around me. After my professional degree and subsequently working with a corporate for a few months; I realized that my calling lay elsewhere. That is when I realized that I wanted to be with the local communities and together work towards building their futures.

7. Personally—Why do you care about sustainability? What is your story?

I do care about sustainability. First, as a parent of a nine-year-old daughter and second as a citizen of this country. Living in Delhi was like living in a ‘smokehouse’ with serious levels of air quality pollution. Living in Mumbai is like living in through deluges, unending traffic, water scarcity, mounds of waste and slums. Further, my work as a researcher at TISS, Mumbai looking at the vulnerability of particularly vulnerable groups in India (PVTG) points out to questions on sustainable development ‘for all’. These problems are fundamentally rooted in the inequitable and unsustainable development trajectory that we have adopted and my concern for sustainability emerges from my own lived experience.


8. What is/are the biggest environmental or social challenge(s) facing your country today?

The environmental crisis of today is environmental degradation together with the climate crisis. The social challenges facing India lies in addressing ‘equity’ and justice in the process of development.


9. What is the most positive action your country has taken to positively impact its environment or social well-being?

The Government of India’s target to boost Renewable energy is quite ambitious and therefore can be termed as the most positive action (RE target of 175 GW by 2022 ) IF IMPLEMENTED CORRECTLY.


The following partner websites can be visited.

INECC partners:

INECC core group comprises of 12 partners from across 5 ecosystems as mentioned below. However, INECC  also collaborates on common agendas with partners from across other states like Assam, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Uttrakhand and Chhattisgarh. INECC draws its strength from each of its partners and attempts to forge synergies and cooperation specifically around issues of Climate change and Sustainable Development.

Name of the partner and website  Location Ecosystem Interest areas
Laya Resource Center



Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh


Forest ecosystems  Human Rights, Social Justice, Alternative Health, Education, livelihoods, Skilling, Women and Youth Empowerment, Governance


Institute for Community Organisation Research (ICOR)



Mumbai, Maharashtra


Urban  Empirical research, Developing models of monitoring and evaluating studies, Training in research and social analytical skills
Environics Trust



New Delhi


Himalayan Participative research, enterprise development, community-based action

Bhubaneshwar, Orissa


Coastal  Action Research



Bangalore, Karnataka


Semi Arids Climate Neutral Village, adaptation and governance
Council of Professional Social Workers



Bhubaneshwar, Orissa Semi Arids   Climate Resilient Agriculture,  Disaster Management, Education, Environment, Forestry, Health, Human Rights
Samuchit Enviro Tech Pvt Ltd, India



Pune, Maharashtra


Urban  Climate-proof Technology development and implementation, action research, Education
South Central India Network for Development Alternatives



Yelagiri Hills, Tamil Nadu


Semi Arids and coastal Human Rights, Social Justice, Gender Equity and Envt. Protection
Community Aid Alliance,



Bangalore, Karnataka


Urban and Semi Arids  Community based energy options, Sustainable livelihoods, Alternate health care
Pipal Tree




Bangalore, Karnataka


Semi Arids Social Justice, Food sovereignty, Sustainable development
Integrated Rural Development of Weaker Sections in India, Semiliguda


Semiliguda, Orissa Community empowerment and Climate Justice
Centre for Education and Documentation


Mumbai, Maharashtra Urban Environment, communication and documentation