A passionate environmental sustainability and conservation professional, Deepti has over 17 years of experience working in India & Canada in education, research, community engagement, fundraising, donor relations and project management. As a Social Innovation Lead at the Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning (CALP) at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, Deepti is currently responsible for leading social mobilization research, outreach and extension programs. This role provides her the opportunity to liaise with schools, youth, educators, municipal staff, NGOs, communities and other researchers and stakeholders on projects related to education and engagement on climate change, urban forestry, community energy, and health. Before joining CALP, Deepti was a Development Officer within the Development and Alumni Engagement portfolio at the University of British Columbia, where she was responsible for fundraising, community engagement & alumni relations. She also has project management experience, leading strategic educational initiatives at the World-Wide Fund for Nature – India (WWF-India) in New Delhi, in addition to promoting environmental and sustainability education and community outreach programs at prominent schools in India.
My project focuses on a multi-pronged socio-technical experiment to build capacity and mobilize youth and citizens on climate action.
1. Educators are struggling to find local, fun, interactive & digitally engaging resources to teach climate change and high school students are unaware of how they can contribute to climate solutions locally. By developing modules that focus on climate change, urban forestry, energy, transportation, green buildings & their co-relation at the local scale, we will not only build capacity among educators to teach climate change, but also among youth to be more aware, motivated and engaged on local climate action.
2. To engage citizens through grass-root community initiatives that have a successful track-record of engagement and impact.
The innovation here is to be strategic about engaging youth & citizens in the same micro-neighbourhoods simultaneously through parallel school-led & community-led initiatives – culminating in local projects that are visible and impactful e.g. a street retrofit program, or a community garden. This offers ‘smart’ ‘cool’ tools to build local capacity leading to potential ripple effects within the micro-neighbourhood.