Vijay Mahanjan is the founder of BASIX Social Enterprise Group. He got educated at Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (1970-75); Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (1979-81) and  Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, USA (1988-89).  He co-founded PRADAN in 1983, Sa-dhan in 1998 and APMAS in 2000. He has co-authored a book “The Forgotten Sector” on the rural non-farm sector and written over 50 articles on rural livelihoods, development and micro-finance. He has been a member of Committee on Financial Inclusion,  Microfinance Equity and Development Fund and is also in the Board of CGAP, the global microfinance apex.  He was selected as “Outstanding Social Entrepreneur” by the Schwab Foundation of the World Economic Forum, Davos, 2003.

Dr. Sankar Datta has around three decades of development sector experience, was founder & Past Dean of The Livelihood School (now the Institute of Livelihood Research and Training), Hyderabad and Director, Indian Grameen Services, Hyderabad. He has completed his Post Graduation in Rural Management from Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) and Doctorate in Agriculture Economics from Sardar Patel University, Gujarat. He worked with Madhya Pradesh State Co-operative Oilseeds Grower’s Federation (OILFED), PRADAN and IIM-Ahmadabad, before joining the faculty of IRMA for five years. Dr. Datta has been involved in extending professional services for rural development activities, specially focusing on livelihood promotion, working with micro-enterprises for over two decades. He has designed and delivered courses on livelihood promotion, institution building and value chains. He worked as Professor at Ajim Premji University Bangalore. Dr. Datta was a member of the Planning Commission Task Group responsible for drafting rural employment section of the 12th Five Year Plan.

Dr. S S Tabrez Nasar has over three decades of experience in international development. He has a Ph.D in Life Sciences and having spent his initial years in teaching, he moved on to an international NGO, the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR) with headquarters in the Philippines. There he was involved in a variety of projects and programs ranging from Aquaculture to Agriculture and Natural Resources Management to developing and implementing international, national and grassroots training courses and managing ‘communications and publications’. After serving IIRR for over a decade, he joined an Inter-Governmental Organization – the Bay of Bengal Programme Inter-Governmental Organisation (BOBP-IGO) where he served for over two years. He then moved on as an Advisor to the Ministry of Planning and Finance, Government of Timor Leste. Tabrez came back to India and extended support to development organizations as a consultant before moving on to Basix as the Head of Operations and HR (Eastern India) for Bhartiya Samruddhi Finance Ltd. He later moved on to Basix Consulting and Training Services Ltd. Among other things, he also heads the Basix Academy for Livelihood and Micro-enterprise Promotion (B-A-LAMP) which has conducted over 130 program benefiting more than 3,000 professionals from across the globe. His interest lie in training, capacity building, livelihood promotion, write-shops and entrepreneurship promotion.

He was Chairs of the Steering Committee of a Regional Training Network (RTN) of IFAD supported program on ‘Promoting Pro-poor Value Chain and Market system Development’ in seven countries – India, China, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Viet Nam, Lao, Cambodia and the Philippines.

Dr. Tabrez has been engaged with programs in India, the Philippines, Lao PDR, Cambodia, Viet Nam, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh, Thailand, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Mozambique other than being exposed to several short-term activities (including consultancies) in over a dozen countries across the globe.

Dr. Somnath Ghosh is an Industrial Relations, HR, Organization Design and Institutional Development specialist. As an academic administrator, he has chaired the graduate programme in management, the doctoral programme, behavioral application group, and research and publication. As Dean (Academics), he designed the collegiate and sentient system, attracted outstanding faculty to work in a small town like Kashipur, mentored them, and designed and implemented faculty development initiatives. All these enabled IIM Kashipur to figure in 16th place in NIRF ranking within three years.He retired as Professor & Founding Dean (Academics) from Indian Institute of Management Kashipur. Prior to that he was Professor and Chair of the doctoral program at MDI, Gurgaon. He has also held regular faculty positions at IIM Lucknow, Bangalore and Indore; International Management Institute, New Delhi and Administrative Staff College of India, Hyderabad.

Concurrently, for the past two decades he has been closely associated with the development sector as researcher, consultant and board member. He was a consultant to The World Bank on three different occasions; Lead Consultant to Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Government of India; British Government’s Department of International Development (DFID), and to Public Health Foundation of India on such diverse issues as R&R of project affected people, livelihoods, and public health. While he was at IIM Kashipur, he was involved in a multi-year World Bank funded and monitored assignment related to Uttar Pradesh Health Systems Strengthening Project. And just recently, he was engaged by Johns Hopkins University to advise the restructuring of the Directorate of Medical Health of Govt. of Uttar Pradesh. It was this association with the development sector that led him to establish the Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Development at IIM Kashipur which was able to garner ample research funding.

He is currently Senior Visiting Fellow, Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies, New Delhi. He has authored over 90 articles, chapters, reports and cases.