Vandhana Ramesh is a Project Associate with the MSME & Entrepreneurship vertical at LEAD. Currently, she is engaged with providing technical assistance to the World Bank Persons with Disabilities (RIGHTS) project in Tamil Nadu.
Before arriving at LEAD, Vandhana explored themes related to healthcare, labour and criminal justice as a part of Project Statecraft, a youth-led think tank.
Vandhana holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Stella Maris College, University of Madras. Deeply interested in widening the lens through which economies are examined, she is passionate about intersectional, pluralistic and non-traditional approaches to policy making.
When not working, Vandhana can be found catching up on compelling history reads and edge-of-your-seat investigative podcasts.
Dibyajyoti Basak is a Research Associate with the Financial Inclusion vertical at LEAD.
Dibyajyoti holds a Master’s degree in Development Studies from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai and a Bachelor’s degree in English Honours from Jadavpur University, Kolkata. Prior to joining LEAD, he worked with the Indian Political Action Committee.
Dibyajyoti is deeply interested in weaving his way through the different layers of public policy research and data science. He is keen to cultivate the interdisciplinary knowledge required to solve complex development issues.
A passionate Manchester United supporter, Dibyajyoti is happiest when he is working his way through grand strategy video games and intriguing fantasy novels.
Sumiran Ardhapure is a Research Associate with the Financial Inclusion vertical at LEAD.
Prior to joining LEAD, Sumiran worked as a research assistant at the Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics on a project measuring the impact of chronic stress on economic decision making.
Sumiran holds a Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Warwick and a Bachelor’s degree in the same subject from Fergusson College, Pune.
He enjoys deconstructing inequality and its various interconnections, particularly its combined implications on economic-decision making and poverty. In his spare time, Sumiran whips up homemade recipes, reads for pleasure, makes art and plays the occasional football.
Vysakh D. Satheesh is a Research Associate with the Financial Inclusion vertical at LEAD.
He has previously worked on projects investigating group dynamics and social preferences among School Management Committee members in Delhi and later unpacked the policy landscape for Menstrual Hygiene Management in India.
Vysakh holds a Master’s degree in Economics from Ashoka University, during which time he completed a capstone thesis on the disparities in entry and exit and mobility among MSME entrepreneurs across caste groups. Vysakh enjoys blending a range of contemporary perspectives tied to micro-developmental economics in his work, such as discrimination, intersectionality, education and labour.
Vysakh employs books, movies and music as his tools of escapism. He’s a passionate fantasy and sci-fi reader but is usually just looking for a good story beautifully told. A certified cat-dad, Vysakh spends his free time planning his next travel adventure while indulging in local delicacies.
Sampurna Basu is a Research Associate with the Financial Inclusion vertical at LEAD.
Prior to joining LEAD, Sampurna worked as a pro bono consultant and assisted with research work on development priorities for the Early-Stage Evaluation of the Human Capital Index at the Independent Evaluation Group, World Bank.
Sampurna has a Master’s degree in Public Policy from George Washington University and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata. Her research interests revolve around pressing questions surrounding women’s participation and work-family policies across contexts. On the weekends, you can catch Sampurna curled up in a cosy corner with a pile of pre-loved books and movies.
Varun Hariharan is a Research Associate with the MSME & Entrepreneurship vertical at LEAD.
Varun holds a Master’s degree in Economics and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Math, from New York University. His college thesis analysed the effect of economic resilience on recovery after the onslaught of hurricanes in the United States.
Prior to working in LEAD, Varun was involved with the social impact investment scene in New York and public policy research initiatives such as The Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) at the University of Pennsylvania. Varun’s research interests include dissecting the historical impact of economic policies on marginalised communities. An avid bibliophile, Varun likes to unwind by rewatching the Sopranos.
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