Donata Mary Rodrigues

Lead – Practice | dmary at iihs dot ac dot in


2017    MBA, Accounting and Finance Pondicherry University Puducherry, India
2008    Diploma in Accounting and Auditing University of Madras Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2007    MA, Sustainable Development Staffordshire University Staffordshire, United Kingdom
2001    MA, Public Administration University of Madras Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

                                     1992    BSc, Zoology Stella Maris College, Madras University Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India


Countries: India, United Kingdom, Switzerland
States: Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka
Cities: Chennai, Tirunelveli, Bangalore, Vijayawada, Coimbatore, Rajahmundry, Kadapa, Tirupati, Zurich
Languages: English, Tamil, Telugu

Donata Mary Rodrigues is an experienced professional with over 25 years of expertise in social development, gender equality and sanitation initiatives. During her 22-year tenure at an international foundation, she demonstrated unwavering commitment to sustainable agriculture, land access and upliftment of marginalised communities, especially Dalits and Adivasis. Through active advocacy, lobbying with state governments and collaborations with partner organisations, Donata significantly advanced social inclusion and gender equality objectives. She improved programme quality, standardised implementation approaches and championed the adoption of best practices. She played a key role in introducing computerised financial management and ERP among NGO partners in India. Her training initiatives extended to self-help groups, farmers’ groups and farmer producer organisations, covering areas like group dynamics, documentation, bookkeeping, organic farming, bio-pesticides, entrepreneurship and business plan development.


In 2021, Donata transitioned to a new role as Senior Consultant at the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS). Currently serving as Lead, Practice, and Senior Specialist in the Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme (TNUSSP), she spearheads efforts to enhance gender and social inclusion in urban sanitation, prioritising the wellbeing of the urban poor and sanitation workers. In addition to her responsibilities, she also leads the Sanitation Situation Assessment in Kannagi Nagar, further showcasing her commitment to evaluating and addressing sanitation challenges in urban areas. Donata’s diverse contributions continue to drive positive change, showcasing her unwavering commitment to advancing inclusive and sustainable urban sanitation practices.

Other Writing

  • Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme (TNUSSP)
  • Improving Sanitation Facilities in Chennai