Governance & Management

Dedicated experts with a proven record of success

CHDI provides a platform for academics and experts in the public and private sectors from Nepal, South Asia and around the world to conduct high quality research, offer policy recommendations, and provide guidance on implementation risks and challenges on a full range of topics in education, training and skilling, and human development. CHDI is a part of the Institute for Integrated Development Studies (



The Center for Human Development and Innovation is established within the Institute of Integrated Development Systems (IIDS) at Kathmandu University (KU). Learn more about CHDI Senior Management. 


Bishnu D. Pant | Executive Director, Institute for Integrated Development Studies, Kathmandu, Nepal

A Ph.D. holder in Applied Statistics from the Indian Statistical Institute, Dr. Pantbegan his professional career at the Agricultural Projects Services where he worked from 1977 to 1984. He served in the National Planning Commission as a Statistics Advisor for about 18 months until the end of 1985. In early 1986, Dr. Pant joined the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP) in Bangkok as the Chief of the Statistical Information Services Section, where he worked for ten years. In 1996, he moved to the Asian Development Bank in Manila and worked in various senior positions including as the Director of Development Indicators Policy Research Division at the Economics and Research Department. After taking retirement from the ADB in July 2008 he worked as Professor at the South Asian Institute of Management until he joined the Institute for Integrated Development Studies (IIDS) in June 2010. An applied statistician with over 30 years of national and international experience, Dr. Pant has extensive management and leadership experience. He has managed statistical offices in international agencies, devised statistical programs for less advanced countries, undertaken evidence-based policy research and data analysis.


Arun R. Joshi | Founder- Director, Center for Human Development and Innovation, Kathmandu, Nepal and Washington D.C., USA

Until recently, Dr. Joshi worked as a Lead Education Specialist in the Education Global Practice at the World Bank. His experience spans policy reform and program development in a diverse range of countries in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia. He has taught education sector policy analysis at George Washington University. He has a master’s degree in international education policy and a doctorate in human development from Harvard University. After 25 years of his service with the World Bank, he took an early retirement and is currently is heading the Center for Human Development and Innovation as its Founder-Director. 


Marito Garcia | Director, Partnerships and Innovation, CHDI, Washington D.C. 

Marito is currently a Fellow at the Darden Business School, Darden Center for Global Initiatives (DCGI) at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA. He is co-founder of Italpinas Development Corporation, and education technology company Marunex (USA). Marito was a senior staff at the World Bank, Washington DC and served as Sector Manager for Education in the Latin America and the Caribbean Region, and Lead Economist. He managed an education program portfolio totalling $2.8-billion spanning 32 countries. Marito has over 20 years experience, in human development, eLearning and innovations in education technology, conditional cash transfers, and skills and workforce development across 55 countries. 

Marito is author several books (available in and peer reviewed journal articles on consumption economics, conditional cash transfers, early childhood development, consumer economics, education, labor and workforce development.  

Marito has a PhD in Development Studies at the Erasmus University  Rotterdam’s Institute of Social Studies, the Netherlands and Executive Program at the Harvard Business School.


Fellows & Interns

The education and human development challenges facing Nepal require highly innovative solutions. Our Fellows are experts who are willing to engage as a team on important projects and/ or contribute to CHDI priority themes online and through blogging. Our Interns are competitively selected young university students and recent graduates who show promise in research and policy analysis in the education and human development sectors. Most Interns will work alongside Fellows on priority projects and themes. We encourage Master’s degree candidates and recent graduates in relevant disciplines to apply as interns to work with our teams on various ongoing projects. Internships can be between 6 months to a year. If you are interested, click here, and we will contact you within 3-4 weeks.

CHDI is also pleased to announce its partnership with the George Washington School of Education and Human Development, Washington, D.C. which offers selected Master's students a supervised internship at CHDI, Kathmandu, Nepal on topics mutually agreed among the selected students, the Department of International Education at GW, and CHDI.


Ganga Gautam | Associate Professor of English - Tribhuvan University Echidna Global Scholar - Brookings Institution

Mr. Ganga Ram Gautam, an Associate Professor at Tribhuvan University in Nepal, trains English teachers at all levels. His main responsibilities include teaching, supervising research and evaluating student work. As a Member of the Subject Committee, he contributes to the revision and dissemination of B. Ed. and M. Ed. curricula in English Education throughout Nepal. Mr. Gautam also designs training packages and prepares trainers for the teacher education program of the Ministry of Education. Ganga is the President of the Nepal English Language Teachers’ Association, which he co-founded in 1992. He organizes national and international conferences and capacity building workshops for the NELTA trainers. In this role, he often collaborates with the Ministry of Education, the US Embassy, the British Council and other national and international ELT associations. Ganga designs training packages and prepares trainers for the teacher education program of the Ministry of Education.


International Advisory Board

The International Advisory Board, will be responsible for providing overall technical guidance on CHDI's operations and products, and advising the Center on the overall direction of research and development. It will also provide guidance on new directions and innovations by drawing on global experience and innovations, and identifying areas for collaboration and partnerships in the region and around the world.


  • Dr. Swarnim Wagle, Former Vice-Chairman, National Planning Commission, Nepal: Swarnim Wagle is the former Vice-Chair and Member of the National Planning Commission of Nepal, headed by the Prime Minister. He also served as the Senior Economist in the World Bank’s International Trade Unit. He has more than 12 years of experience in international organizations, and has policy research interests in trade, investment and public finance. He served as a Policy Specialist at UNDP in New York where he co-authored the 2013 Human Development Report, "The Rise of the South." Between 2002 and 2007, he co-led the UNDP Asia Trade Initiative, a research and advisory project on trade and WTO negotiations covering more than 20 countries. Swarnim holds a PhD in economics from the Australian National University and an MPA in International Development from Harvard University.


  • Dr. Robert A. LeVine, Professor Emeritus of Education and Human Development, Harvard University, USA: Robert LeVine's research concerns cultural aspects of parenthood and child development in African, Asian, Latin American, and other societies. His most recent research is on the influence of maternal schooling on reproduction and child health care in Nepal. He is examining how women's literacy positively affects their health and that of their children, as well as contributing to children's emerging literacy.Born in New York City, Dr. LeVine was educated at the University of Chicago (BA in 1951, MA 1953). He took his PhD in Social Anthropology from Harvard in 1958. He returned for psychoanalytic training to Chicago, where he earned a Certificate from the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis in 1971.


  • Dr. Firas Raad, Country Manager, World Bank, Kuwait: Firas Raad, a Jordanian National, is the World bank Country Manager in Kuwait. Raad joined the World Bank in 2002 as a Senior Health Policy Specialist. More recently, he was working in the Health, Nutrition and Population (HNP) Global Practice. He has extensive health policy experience in various countries in the Middle East and North Africa region. Prior to 2009, Raad focused on implementing health sector reforms in Lebanon, Palestine and Egypt. He also served as the World Bank Human Development Coordinator for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.  


  • Nepal Education Development Partners Group Chair (TBC)


  • Nancy Birdsall, Past President, Center for Global Development, USA: Nancy Birdsall is president emeritus and a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development, a policy-oriented research institution that opened its doors in Washington, DC in October 2001. Prior to launching the center, Birdsall served for three years as senior associate and director of the Economic Reform Project at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Her work at Carnegie focused on issues of globalization and inequality, as well as on the reform of the international financial institutions.


  • Dr. Nicholas Burnett, Senior Fellow, Results for Development, USA: Nicholas Burnett is a senior fellow at Results for Development (R4D), a Special Professor of International Education at Nottingham University, chair of the Board of UNESCO’s International Institute for Educational Planning, and on the NORRAG Consultative Committee, the Advisory Board of the Global Business School Network and the Board of Americans for UNESCO.


  • Dr. Amit Dar, Director of Operations, Human Development, World Bank, USA: An economist by training, Amit has worked extensively on education, labor markets, skills development, and social protection, as well as results-based financing.  He has held various positions in South Asia and in the Social Protection Anchor Unit, his most recent assignment being Director of the Education Global Practice. Amit holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Brown University.


  • Prof. Todd Rose, Associate Professor, Harvard University, USA (TBC): Todd Rose is the director of the Mind, Brain, & Education Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he also leads the Laboratory for the Science of the Individual. His work is focused at the intersection of the science of individuality and the practice of personalization in education. He is also the co-founder of The Center for Individual Opportunity, a non-profit organization that promotes the principles of individuality in work, school, and society. Todd is the author of The End of Average.


  • Mr. Rajesh Rajani, Founder, Twaweza, Tanzania (TBC): Rakesh Rajani Rakesh Rajani is a Tanzanian and global civil society leader. He has established and led many key social initiatives in the evolution of education in Tanzania and East Africa starting in 1991, familiar to many people in Tanzania, especially as a vocal advocate for young people through education and recently, open government and ICT. In addition he helped set up and served as the first chairman of Policy Forum, a network of over 100 NGOs in Tanzania involved in helping 'policies work for people'. Rajani is considered a thought leader for much International Development work, particularly related to child rights, education, democracy and open government in East Africa and globally.


  • Dr. Sajitha Bashir, Practice Manager, Education Global Practice, World Bank, USA: Dr. Sajitha Bashir is Education Sector Manager for Eastern and Southern Africa region of the World Bank. She has over 15 years of operational and research experience with the World Bank, national and state governments in India and other donor agencies.  Within the World Bank, she has worked in Africa, South Asia and Latin America, where her priorities have been leading policy dialogue, strategy development and designing and guiding education sector reform programs within the broader framework of fiscal and governance reforms.  She has extensive experience in preparing and implementing projects at all levels of education.  Prior to joining the World Bank, she worked as Chief Consultant for Research and Evaluation with the Government of India’s national primary education program. She has a Ph.D. in economics from the London School of Economics and has published extensively.


  • Prof. Michael Koenig, Associate Dean, Jones School of Business, Rice University, USA: Michael Koenig joined the business school as associate dean for innovation initiatives and executive director of executive education. His innovation position is a new role at Rice Business and will bring technology and transformative business education together, both internally and externally. His role in executive education will drive program and business model innovation with a focus on continuing to build a technology-enhanced portfolio of net revenue generating programs with local, national and global impact and stature.