B Siddarthan is the Director of WRI’s Major Emerging Economies Initiative (MEEI) a new, exciting initiative within the Climate and Energy Program. Siddarthan brings with him more than 20 years of experience, in which, he had spent close to 13 years in bilateral development agencies.
Siddarthan joined WRI after serving as Senior Adviser for Climate Change and Energy Policy in the Climate Change and Energy Unit of UK FCO- DFID-DECC in New Delhi, India where he provided strategic advice, sharp analysis on India’s domestic climate policy and drivers and offered practical recommendations on the ways and means to enhance better understanding between India and UK/EU on international climate change policy issues including UNFCCC negotiations. Siddarthan was also the lead on in promoting low carbon high growth/prosperity work in India which had substantial focus on promoting UK efforts in business engagement on climate change and on exploring options for potential India-UK collaboration on low carbon development policies. He played an active role in facilitating the second India-UK Structured Dialogue on Climate Change and was the lead adviser for some of UK’s strategic interventions supported through the Strategic Program Fund, including the Carbon Disclosure Project-India.
Prior to this, Siddarthan was Senior Adviser- Environment and Climate Change in the Royal Norwegian Embassy/NORAD in Delhi for close to 6 years, where he was instrumental in setting up the Indo-Norwegian Joint Working Group on Environment with climate change as an important pillar of cooperation between the two countries. He played lead role in developing Norad’s environment and climate change strategies in India, helped identify strategic areas of cooperation and provided strategic inputs on climate change to the Indo-Norwegian Joint Commission (co-chaired at the Ministerial level). Siddarthan also designed, developed and rolled out a new Indo- Norwegian Institutional Cooperation Program on Environment and Climate Change (covering areas of climate change, biodiversity, forests and climate change interface, industrial pollution remediation, agriculture and climate change and so on) and in less than two years, helped build a portfolio of 10 research and field projects.
Apart from his advisory roles, Siddarthan also has enormous experience in managing large, diverse and complex and programs and projects funded by DFID, NORAD and UK FCO in the areas of environment, climate change and natural resource management, implemented by national, sub-national governments, research institutions and NGOs including a vast range of projects under the Indo Norwegian Institutional Cooperation Program, Indo Norwegian Environment Program and DFID funded watershed and livelihood programs.
Before joining DFID, Siddarthan worked in WWF India where he was the part of the core team that advised the Secretary General on program planning and coordination which included advice on ways and means to enhance the quality of project proposals, monitoring and evaluation, reporting and strengthening relationship with the international donors. His career began in the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi where was active in research in the areas of rural development and appropriate technologies for 5 years.
Siddarthan is an engineer by education and is married to Shanthi, a senior level banker. They have a son Aditya who is 12 years now.