2013 MSc, Natural Resources Management, TERI University, Delhi
2010 BSc, Chemistry (Hons), Fergusson College, Pune University, Pune
Countries: India, Nepal
States: Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Kerela
Cities: Bengaluru, Kolkata, Delhi, Pune
Languages: English, Hindi, Bengali
Ritwika was supported by the Ruffords Small Grants Foundation to undertake her final dissertation research project guided by Dr Nath at the French Institute of Pondicherry. Her project was aimed at incentivising coffee farmers in the Western Ghats to transition from monoculture to shade coffee. The two-fold objective was part of a larger ongoing conservation project in the Western Ghats: to enhance farm and farmer resilience through sustained yield of high-quality coffee and promotion of native trees to encourage biodiversity conservation. Her other independent project at TERI was with WWF – India. She studied the political ecology of growing human-tiger conflict in five critical villages bordering the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve in West Bengal.
Over the last five years, she has worked with different institutions at the interface of science and policy. These include varying lengths of engagement with projects on differential impacts of and vulnerabilities to climate and other stressors in climate hotspots (Adaptation at Scale in Semi-arid Regions at IIHS); Climate fragility and resilience in the context of urbanisation and migration in tier-2 Indian cities (CapaCities funded by the Swiss Development Corporation at IIHS ); and other small and big projects interrogating urban environmental change and their social and institutional dimensions (supported by IDRC in PAC). She has worked on projects critically examining climate vulnerability and adaptation spectrum across rural, urban and peri-urban regions in different ecosystems; Deltas of Tamil Nadu and Sundarbans, Himalayan regions of Nepal and Semi-arid regions of South India. These involvements have shaped her interest in myriad visible and elusive ways people interact to shape lives and wellbeing of individuals and communities, institutions and governance in the geographies that host them.
At IIHS, apart from research support on a range of climate change and policy issues, she also assists in knowledge management, grant writing and teaching for different audiences.