Sustainability Science Program

Santosh Kesavan

Santosh Kesavan

Santosh KesavanMr. Santosh Kesavan
Sustainability Science Program
Kennedy School of Government
Mailbox 81
Harvard University
79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138 USA
Office: 502 Rubenstein Building
Tel:
Email: santosh_kesavan@hks.harvard.edu
Group affiliation: Giorgio Ruffolo Research Fellow in Sustainability Science
Based in India

Santosh Kesavan is a Giorgio Ruffolo Research Fellow in the Sustainability Science Program. He is a telecommunications professional interested in the application of emerging technologies to solving inter-disciplinary challenges in urban service delivery, environmental sustainability, and digital inclusion. His research focuses on the implementation and analysis of innovation systems to create low carbon pathways in the urban transportation sector. Santosh is contributing to collaborative work with the Initiative on Public-Private Partnerships to Promote Sustainable Development in India led by Professor Rohini Pande. He started his career as a scientist in a systems analysis laboratory of Government of India where he contributed to the development of an indigenous GIS system for conducting cross-country trafficability studies, with terrain visualization and satellite image integration. He is a recipient of the J.C.Bose prize from the Indian government for the best student scientist (1992). Over the last twelve years, he has held a variety of positions in program management, research and development, technology marketing and business development at Tejas Networks, VT Aepco, Safenet and Philips. Between 2006 and 2008, he was the principal investigator for two public transit safety and surveillance projects that were supported by advanced technology grants from the National Institute of Justice and US Federal Transit Administration. Santosh is the 2010 winner of National Geographic Channel’s “Innovation for India” award in the Environmental Edge category and a 2011 national finalist in Qualcomm’s QPrize competition. He received a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Maryland (2005), a Masters of Engineering from the Indian Institute of Science (1998), and a Bachelor of Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (1990). His faculty host is Rohini Pande.

Design and evaluation of a public-private partnership scheme to promote sustainable transportation in India
On-road vehicles account for over 40% of global oil consumption and 77% of carbon-dioxide emissions from the world’s transportation sector. Growing urbanization and rise in economic prosperity in developing countries is resulting in a significant transition to private vehicles that have higher energy and pollution intensities. As a result, policymakers in India have introduced new regulations that can augment the share of public transportation, but with limited success. Current initiatives have not adequately mobilized private sector participation in the implementation of low carbon transport policies, products and services. In this research, a new public-private partnership scheme based on existing corporate loyalty programs to incentivize the use of mass transit services is formulated. Evidence is collected to analyze its impact in promoting sustainable transport. The scheme is designed and launched in the city of Bangalore and its effectiveness analyzed using randomized evaluation techniques.

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