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Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity

Ishrat is a development professional who has more than a decade of experience in social impact and institution-building through policy, governance, and administrative reforms. She has led large-scale multi-million projects and developed institutional mechanisms within Government Departments to ensure effective collaborations across sectors.

She is currently the South Asia Lead for, which is part of the World Economic Forum’s efforts to accelerate nature-based solutions and was set up to support the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030. In her role Ishrat focuses on forest conservation and restoration keeping indigenous communities at centre.

Previously, she worked on educational inequalities with a focus on government schools in India which cater to the largest number of school-going children in the world coming from some of the most marginalised communities. She has focused on the effective implementation of the Right to Education Act of 2009 and also on bridging the gap between the government and CSOs to provide support in designing contextualised curriculum, capacity building, and last-mile delivery.

In her 12 years of professional journey she has worked in six States of India and has given her services in Primary Education Department, Higher and Technical Education Department and Tribal Development Department at the State level and has also contributed to the revamping of Employment exchange offices into Model Career centres through her assignment with Ministry of Labour and Employment, Govt. of India. Her time in Tribal Development Department of Government of Maharashtra as consultant and Executive Director of Department’s Think Tank exposed her to Forest Rights Act, 2006 which she continued to explore during her Masters at LSE.

Ishrat holds a BSc in Life Sciences from Delhi University, MA in Elementary Education from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, and MSc in Inequalities and Social Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science. 

People’s participation and dissent gives me hope that we will come through difficult situations. This disaster has brought out the best in people. It has united us on many fronts, and tremendous stories of collaboration and solidarity are coming from every part of the country. People are fighting for their rights. In the past two years, this country has seen some of the biggest-ever people-led movements, ranging from the fight to protect citizenship to the rights of farmers to live with dignity and the rights of indigenous people to protect and inhabit the forests.

Ishrat Jahan


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