The Heart and the Head
In the seventh episode of Giving Done Right season two, CEP’s Phil and Grace talk with Rohini Nilekani, philanthropist and Giving Pledge signatory. Rohini discusses trust-based philanthropy, the effects of the pandemic in India, and what it means to create a family legacy through philanthropy.
Rohini Nilekani is the Chairperson of Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies and Co-founder and Director of EkStep, a non-profit education platform. She is also the Founder and Former Chairperson of Arghyam, a foundation she set up in 2001 for sustainable water and sanitation, which funds initiatives all across India. From 2004 to 2014, she was Founder-Chairperson and chief funder of Pratham Books, a non-profit children’s publisher that reached millions of children during her tenure.
A former journalist, Rohini has written for many leading publications such as Times of India, India Today, Mint, etc. Penguin Books India published her first book, a medical thriller called Stillborn, and her second nonfiction book, ‘Uncommon Ground,’ based on her eponymous TV show. In 2017, she was inducted as Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is member of the Board of Science Gallery Bengaluru and the Advisory Board of the Well Being Project from 2019.
In 2017, she, together with her husband Nandan Nilekani, signed the Giving Pledge, which commits half their wealth to philanthropic causes.
Executive Producer: Sarah Martin
Audio engineer: Kevin O’Connell
Additional editing: Isabel Hibbard
Music: “FasterFasterBrighter” and “Kid Kodi” by Blue Dot Sessions
Artwork: Jay Kustka
Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies
Ashoka University’s Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy
The Impact of COVID-19 on India’s Nonprofit Organisations: A Snapshot Report