Interviews

We believe that everyone has the capacity to contribute to the society in a positive manner and all they need is a little inspiration. These snippets from interesting conversations with academicians, activists and other luminaries, who have worked on the ground to bring about a positive change in the society, will provide the much needed push. We talk to them about their experiences, motivations, problems they faced and so on. These will inspire the reader to use their skills and knowledge for the betterment of the society.

Attention needs to be paid on protecting coastal zones and forests, rather than sacrificing them for mining- Harini Nagendra, Professor of Sustainability, Azim Premji University. (Part-II)

We all know that small steps can make a big difference. What are some of the lesser- known initiatives that people can take to maintain the ecological balance and deal with climate change on an individual level? The biggest step is to form communities. Whether working for lake restoration, waste clean-ups, composting, environmental campaigns or anything else, the power of the collective is tremendous. Different people have different interests and strengths – some are good naturalists and can communicate this

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People and Governments do not think of sustainability or ecology as being an urban problem- Harini Nagendra, Professor of Sustainability, Azim Premji University. (Part-I)

Can you please elaborate upon ‘intersection of natural and social sciences’? Understanding urban sustainability requires the intersection of natural and social sciences. For instance, to clean up and restore polluted lakes or rivers – we need to understand ecology and hydrology. But we also need to understand how people relate to water bodies, whether these are grazers, fishers, or IT workers – and make sure that restoration addresses all their needs. This requires an understanding of social sciences and how

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Privacy is a very constitutional issue and just making it a transactional data protection kind of issue is not the best way to go- Abhayraj Naik, Azim Premji University, Bengaluru. (Part-II)

With this technological advancement in modern era e.g. cloud computing, AI, Cybersecurity etc. Do you think our government is well prepared to stand out from the crowd? In my imagination, technology and environment are quite connected as well. There is common issue of meta level for e.g., the issue of risk, the issue of democratic control over policies and decision making. Speaking specifically, even the idea of impact assessment which has moved from environmental thinking to technology thinking. So, now

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Industrialization, business and related aspects of rapid urbanization are the major causes of environmental degradation- Abhayraj Naik, Azim Premji University, Bengaluru. (Part-I)

Sir, you have been working as an environmentalist for more than a decade. What made your interest grow in this subject? And also tell us something about your organization “Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)”. My organization “ICA” is a new non-profit organization, started about 5-6 months back and is based in Bangalore. It focuses on transformative system change and response to the climate crisis. Now coming to your first part, even when I was a school student, I was quite

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‘Poor’ quality produce may not always be ‘bad’.- Richa Kumar, Associate Professor, IIT-Delhi. (Part-2)

Link to the first part of the article: https://theblueletters.com/index.php/2020/11/02/if-the-mandi-is-gone-there-is-no-buyer-of-last-resort-left-anymore-richa-kumar-associate-professor-iit-delhi/ Why is a buyer of last resort important and how does their existence impact the agronomy or agroecology ? Corporate buyers are typically more concerned with the quality of produce they buy and in private marketplaces there are strict rules regarding quality—anything below a certain grade is rejected. It is only private traders (both outside and inside the mandi) who buy such produce and improve its quality before re-selling it, or

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If the mandi is gone, there is no buyer of last resort left anymore- Richa Kumar, Associate Professor, IIT-Delhi. (Part-1)

When we talk of the economy, we think of stock markets and corporate but agriculture is rarely the first thing on our mind despite the fact that agriculture still plays a major role. How this perception affects our agrarian policies and reforms which are many a times alleged to be more consumer friendly than farmer friendly? We all eat and that is an intimate connection we have with agriculture and the land. Unfortunately, most of us don’t get to see

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