Associate, Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, University of Melbourne
P. Simran Sethi is a journalist, strategist and educator committed to an expansion of social and environmental engagement that includes voices from rural and urban communities. Simran is currently an associate at the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute (MSSI) at the University of Melbourne in Australia, where she is conducting research on the loss of agricultural biodiversity in our food system. Simran is also the Queen’s College Sugden Fellow, and recently served as the Kelly Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at St. Catherine University, the largest women’s college in the United States. Simran works with NGOs on social media and story development, and is a senior communications advisor to the Center for Environmental Health in Oakland, USA, and sustainability advisor to the Adahan group in Istanbul, Turkey.
Named one of the top ten “eco-heroes” of the planet by the UK’s Independent, and lauded as the “environmental messenger” by Vanity Fair and an “environmental woman of impact” by Variety, Simran has contributed numerous segments to CNBC, PBS, MSNBC, The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Today Show. She has been featured on ABC radio and television in Australia, Vatican Radio in Italy and NPR in the United States. Simran was the national environmental correspondent for NBC News, the anchor/writer of Sundance Channel’s first dedicated environmental programming and the host of the EMMY award-winning PBS documentary A School in the Woods. Simran is currently the host/digital contributor to the PBS series QUEST: The Science of Sustainability.
Simran is the contributing author of Ethical Markets: Growing the Green Economy, winner of the bronze 2008 Axiom Award for Best Business Ethics Book. She has written about sustainability for The Huffington Post, Metropolis Magazine, Mother Earth News, Oprah.com and the Guggenheim Museum. She is the founder and curator of the beta website Metamorphose, an interdisciplinary exploration of the personal and cultural dimensions of transformation. Simran is currently working on a book focused on the loss of biodiversity in food, commissioned by HarperCollins Publishers.
Simran has presented at institutions ranging from the Commonwealth Club to M.I.T.; keynoted conferences including the 140 Character Conference and the North American Association For Environmental Education conference; and moderated panels for the White House sustainability symposium GreenGov and Clinton Global Initiative University.
Simran has served, since 2008, as an associate fellow at the Asia Society. Simran was also a fellow in the Poynter Institute’s Sense-Making project, a Ford Foundation-funded program studying the integration of new media and democratic values. Simran holds an M.B.A. in sustainable business from the Presidio Graduate School and graduated cum laude with a B.A. in sociology and women’s studies from Smith College. She is the 2009 recipient of the Smith College Medal, awarded to alumnae demonstrating extraordinary professional achievements and outstanding service to their communities, the 2010 recipient of the American College Personnel Association Champion of Sustainability award for leadership on sustainability in academe, and the 2011 winner of the National Education Association Mobile Project Award.