Founder & Chairman
Founder and Chairman of Central Square Foundation (CSF) and a Founding Member of Ashoka University. Prior to this, he worked for twenty years in the investment management business and ran one of India's leading private equity funds, ChrysCapital. In June 2012, he left his full-time role at Chrys Capital to start CSF to pursue evidence driven and innovation led system reform in school education. Ashoka University is a not for profit university that aims to offer an Ivy League-quality undergraduate programme in India, based on the US liberal education system.
Ashok advises CSF on its investment, ecosystem, research and advocacy efforts.
He currently works as a independent Strategic Consultant assisting a wide range of industries including , Technology and Outsourcing,IT services, Financial Services, Data Analytics, Consumer Durables, QSR / Food and the Power sectors. Prior to this, Ashok was President and Country Head for San Francisco-headquartered Global Vantedge and earlier an Associate COO at Wipro Spectramind. With over 30 years of experience, Ashok has demonstrated leadership ability to start up, manage, turn around, and act as a ‘hands on’ Strategic Consultant to turn around and deliver results in companies in both high growth and stress environments.
Ashok has a MBA (PGDBM) from XLRI, Jamshedpur and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Delhi University. He was ranked first and awarded the Gold Medal at XLRI Jamshedpur.
Girindre Beeharry, director, Global Education Learning Strategy, leads the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s efforts to produce global public goods (data, evidence, innovation) that can inform local education policy reform in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Girindre previously served as director of BMGF’s India Country Office, overseeing the Foundation’s work in health, sanitation, financial inclusion, and agriculture, in service of India’s most vulnerable communities. Before that, he was the director of strategy of BMGF’s Global Health division, and worked to ensure that life-saving technologies would be accessed by the people for whom they were developed. Prior to joining BMGF in 2005, Girindre worked in business development for immunization at Becton, Dickinson, and Co. He also worked as a senior health economist in the Latin America and Caribbean Region at the World Bank from 1997 to 2002.
Girindre read Economics at the universities of Paris and Oxford. He has worked in Latin America, Asia, and Africa since 1994.
Gulzar Natarajan joined the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) in 1999. He is currently on leave, working with a London-based international development organisation, Global Innovation Fund. He has previously held leadership positions as Municipal Commissioner of Vijayawada, Chairman and Managing Director of Eastern Power Distribution Company of Andhra Pradesh, the District Collector of Hyderabad, the Vice Chairman and Managing Director of the Infrastructure Corporation of the Andhra Pradesh state, and in the Government of India. He holds a Bachelor’s in Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai, and a Master’s in International Development (MPA- ID) from Harvard Kennedy School.
Luis Crouch is the Chief Technical Offìcer of RTI's International Development Group. Luis is an education economist (agricultural economist by training, PhD Berkeley 1981--education being a post-PhD interest). He has specialized in policy, decentralized finance (e.g., funding formulas) and decentralization, political economy of reform, education statistics and projections. Dr. Crouch also served as head of the Global Good Practices Team at the World Bank's Global Partnership for Education Secretariat.
He has worked closely with governments advising on reform processes, including South Africa's funding reforms and more recently Egypt's decentralization reforms. He has worked on or studied some 20 countries in all regions of the world, but with a focus on Latin America, Southern and Eastern Africa, and Indonesia.
His more recent work is in early grade reading and Early Childhood Development, as key entry-points to improving quality. He has worked in more than 25 countries in a 30-year career in development, and is the author of reports, technical papers, and books. Luis studied Agricultural Economics at the University of Berkeley.
Sri Rajan is chairman of Bain & Company, India. He is an active contributor to the firm's Customer Strategy & Marketing, Private Equity, Industrial Goods & Services and Telecommunications, Media and Technology (TMT) practices.
He has over 20 years of management consulting experience in India and the United States. Sri is an active investor in the startup ecosystem in India and is on the board of Delhivery. He is also on the Advisory Boards of various social organizations, including Akshaya Patra.
Sri earned his MBA from the Wharton School of Business, where he was a Palmer Scholar. He graduated with a post-graduate degree in management from IIM, Calcutta.
Yamini Aiyar is the President and Chief Executive of CPR. Her research interests are in the field of social policy and development. Yamini founded the Accountability Initiative at CPR. The Accountability Initiative has produced significant research in the areas of governance, state capacity and social policy. Yamini’s own research on social accountability, elementary education, decentralisation and administrative reforms has received both academic and popular recognition.
Yamini Aiyar is a TED fellow and a founding member of the International Experts Panel of the Open Government Partnership. She has also been a member of the World Economic Forum’s global council on good governance. Previously, she has worked with the World Bank’s Water and Sanitation Program and Rural Development unit in Delhi, where she focused on action research aimed at strengthening mechanisms for citizen engagement in local government. Additionally, she was a member of the decentralisation team at the World Bank that provided policy support to strengthen Panchayati Raj (local governance) in India.
She is an Alumna of the London School of Economics, St. Edmund's college Cambridge University, and St Stephen’s College, Delhi University.
Bikkrama is a Managing Director at Central Square Foundation’s and co-leads CSF’s strategy, operations and external partnerships. Further he leads CSF’s work across Policy Advocacy & Communications, Ed-tech, Private school sector, Public governance, Research and M&E and Early Childhood Education.
Previously he led CSF’s work on governance and school systems focusing on issues related to assessment, state engagement and policy research. He also helped build organisation’s portfolio and approach in early childhood education and in School to Work Transition.
He joined CSF with training in economics, business and education. Prior to joining CSF, Bikkrama, a Teach For India (2011) Fellow, worked for two years as an elementary school teacher in a municipal school in Delhi. He has also worked as a management consultant with Accenture in India on a variety of projects related to change management, performance improvement, cost reduction and supply chain.
Bikkrama is an MBA from INSEAD and holds an undergraduate degree in Economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Shaveta is Managing Director at Central Square Foundation. Shaveta has been part of the founding team at CSF, and co-leads CSF's strategy, operations and strategic partnerships. She leads CSF’s work on FLN (Foundational Literacy & Numeracy) across State engagement & Classroom Instruction, Grant-making, and also oversees CSF’s organizational development.
Shaveta has previously led CSF's work on human capital and institutional structures in Education- across teachers, school leaders, academic institutions and structures.
She brings to the team almost two decades of professional experience in management and education. Her corporate background includes work at The Boston Consulting Group and Citibank. She has also been a visiting faculty member in the Human Resources and Organizational Behavior disciplines at business schools. Her primary areas of interest are systems adoption at scale and leadership & organizational behavior, and she is certified in the psychometric tools MBTI, FIRO-B and FIRO-Business.
Shaveta earned her bachelor’s degree in Economics from Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi and holds an MBA in Management from IIM, Bangalore.
Gouri leads the Foundation’s work in the area of Education Technology.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Gouri was part of the early leadership team at the National Skill Development Corporation, a PPP created with the objective of funding private sector initiatives in the skill development space. At the Corporation, Gouri worked on identifying opportunities for investments, developing the research base for skills and conceptualising and implementing state level projects. Prior to the NSDC, Gouri was a Project Leader with the Boston Consulting Group and did extensive work in the Financial Services domain across areas of strategy, operations and transformation.
Gouri is a rank holder Chartered Accountant and a MBA from IIM Bangalore.
Rahul leads the governance work at the Central Square Foundation.
Prior to joining CSF he was at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and before that at NITI Aayog, the Indian government's policy think tank. In both institutions he worked on identifying ways to improve governance in India. He has previously carried out research on economic and social sector policy at Brookings India and the Indian School of Business, and also worked in the corporate sector in consulting and marketing roles.
He has an MBA from IIM Calcutta and a Master's in Economics from the University of British Columbia.
Saurabh leads CSF's work on DIKSHA and on ICAP (India Content Accelerator Program)
Saurabh has rich experience in the education space building EnglishLeap, an online English learning application , which was used by more than two million users and was one of the top edicarion applications on the Google Play Store. Prior to leading EnglishLeap, Saurabh worked in analytics and worked across continents with Fortune 500 clients.
He holds a bachelor's degree in Commerce from Shriram College of Commerce, University of Delhi and a MBA from IIM Lucknow.