The middle Road
The middle Road is a platform enabling social change and impact in the social and development sector, along with art and wellbeing. The platform features leading social change enablers, business and social leaders, policymakers within the social ecosystem. The website of the platform https://themiddleroad.org/
Sunday Oct 30, 2022
Sunday Oct 30, 2022
Nishant Malhotra is the Solo Founder of The middle Road platform a thought leader online learning platform enabling social change and impact globally. The startup fuses Media and Edtech to spread affordable education through comprehensive publications, articles, online courses, podcasts and much more. Refer to the site here.Nishant Malhotra’s Discussion with Surabhi Yadav, Sajhe Sapne, Founder & CEO The middle Road, a thought leadership and online learning platform enabling social change and impactIn this episode from The middle Road, I chat primarily with Surabhi Yadav, Founder & CEO of Sajhe Sapne, a nonprofit that’s empowering rural women through quality education and catalysing livelihood for the underserved section of the society.Q). Hello, Surabhi I thank you for chatting with me about your work. You have had a tremendous journey both personally and professionally. You went to IIT, Delhi, one of the best engineering colleges in India for your under and a post-graduate degree in engineering. You also did a master's in development practice from the University of California, Berkeley, US. Today as Founder & CEO of Sajhe Sapne, your organization is empowering rural women in India through quality education. An overwhelming majority of India’s rural population works in the unorganized sector. Kindly share your journey highlighting the motivation in setting up your nonprofit.Q). You have a flagship program in Management and Rural Development where you train, skill, and provide jobs to rural women between the age of 18-24 years. Please speak about this ground-breaking residential program that is enabling social change and impact within the Indian ecosystem. Q). Surabhi - 65 percent of the Indian population resides in the rural area with a literacy rate of 73.5 percent as of 2021. 1However, the quality of education is not good. The Indian government has initiatives example Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya, Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, and Digital Initiatives that facilitate education for women. How do you think these policies are bettering your organization's mission and vision? What are the qualitative insights you would like to share that you encounter in your effort to educate rural women? Describe roadblocks and impediments and the steps you take to overcome these challenges. For full list of questions, refer to The middle Road podcast section
Saturday Jun 18, 2022
Saturday Jun 18, 2022
Listen to Nishant Malhotra's chat with Bhargav Sri Prakash. A brief about Bhargav Sri Prakash. Bhargav is an alum of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and is passionate about using technology to solve complex problems governing society. He is the recipient of the world’s first digital vaccine patent. He is the Founder & CEO of Friendslearn, a biotech and medical technology company and pioneer of neuropsychology-based digital vaccines to prevent lifestyle diseases. He has worked in collaborative roles in research with leading global research and think tank institutes. Refer to the questions below. Nishant Malhotra: Bhargav thanks for joining The middle Road for an informative conversation with regards to your work at Friendslearn. You received the patent for the world’s first digital vaccine. The digital vaccine uses technology to nudge people towards positive behaviour using a tool called neurocognitive training. Tell the audience about this wonderful invention. The vaccine was developed as part of Carnegie Mellon University’s digital vaccine project. Richard King Mellon Foundation awarded the grant for the digital vaccine project. Share the journey that brought you to the Carnegie Mellon University project. How impactful is your vaccine for adults? It’s easy to modulate the behaviour of children through games and neurocognitive training but tell us what kind of results have you achieved in altering the behaviour pattern for adults for the better. Cass Sunstein and Richard Thaler have written about how nudging can be used in public policy for societal good. Although nudging is used for productive behaviour, Facebook has come under universal criticism for its adverse cognitive practices on Facebook customers. How do you think the cognitive field is going to evolve for the better as we advance? o How will practitioners of cognitive science respond to the growing concern from the society? Share an Aha Aha experience with the audience. I thank you and wish you the very best in your journey ahead
Saturday Apr 30, 2022
Saturday Apr 30, 2022
In this special episode, Nishant Malhotra, Solo Founder of The middle Road platform and for-profit social impact startup Middle Road OPC Pvt Ltd, chats about various product offerings. The discussion is about various Online Courses offered by the thought leader platform The middle Road (www.themiddleroad.org) especially in impact evaluation, sustainable finance, economics etc. The middle Road platform recently moved into a subscription based model, listen to the various online courses, learn about Insights the flagship publication of the startup, guest feature, global bytes and much more.The middle Road (www.themiddleroad.org) is a SAAS-based global thought leader platform – that synergizes Media with EdTech to spread affordable quality higher education and thought leadership globally within the parlance of the social impact sector. Inspired by the seventeen sustainable development goals, The middle Road's mission is to make a holistic change within society. The startup promotes finance & economics, sustainable development, art, culture, and well-being supported by well-rounded and comprehensive online learning initiatives. Known for its intense and educative reads, insightful and informative podcasts, webinars and videos, and comprehensive online courses, the company is a refreshing change from any of its peers, youthful yet measured, enlightening yet lively, creative yet simplistic, thought-provoking, multifaceted, and instructional. Check out www.themiddleroad.org. Insights are educational reads with about 2000 to 4000 research focussed scholarly reads many times with embedded videos on topics related to the mission of The middle Road. These publications are integrated through podcasts and online courses to educate the audience on topics example developmental economics, sustainable finance, impact evaluation etc. There is a guest feature wherein guest authors can publish on the platform. Global bytes are terse posts that talk about the latest form the development sector or add on to the learning within the mission of The middle Road.
Saturday Apr 16, 2022
Saturday Apr 16, 2022
Hello Everyone, very happy to introduce Paola Cyment, a senior project manager at Women in Migration Network, a nonprofit that promotes women’s human rights for all migration and development policy. Paola wears many hats professionally and has worked across many organizations and profiles within the international development sector. She is presently based in Buenos Aires, Argentina and has a master’s in international affairs from the School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University. In today’s splendid discussion, I chat with Paola on many issues governing society including women's rights. Its good to watch the video interview along with the podcast, so you can visually watch the dashboard of the research work. You Tube link here. Hello, Paola great to have you for a podcast with The middle Road. Paola, you work in a fascinating country, Argentina. I am a diehard fan of Diego Maradona, Messi, and Argentina’s soccer team. Delighted to feature someone from the Argentina on The middle Road platform. Paola, kindly discuss your present work at the Women in Migration Network. You are an advocate of women's human rights. Do share your views both globally and in Argentina on how women's rights are evolving. Are they getting better? The situation for migrants has been very bad. Algeria expelled over 17,000 migrants last year mostly Sub-Saharan African, between January and October 10 last year, including hundreds of women and children and some registered asylum seekers. This continued even during COVID-19 lockdown, included violations of women’s dignity. 1 Women trafficking is increasing, according to human rights watch at alarming levels in some countries globally. On the other hand, Armenia ratified the Council of Europe’s Convention on Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (“Lanzarote Convention”). 1
Sunday Apr 10, 2022
Sunday Apr 10, 2022
The middle Road is proud to feature and showcase the Theory of Change Certification Course on the thought leader platform. This is a highly curated feature designed to promote the work of selected actors within the global social impact arena whose work lies within the mission of The middle Road. Nishant Malhotra, Sole Founder & CEO of the venture, reached out to Dr. Helene Clark to highlight the Theory of Change certification course offered by her nonprofit Center For Theory of Change. Refer to the podcast with Helene on Theory of Change.
Thursday Feb 03, 2022
Thursday Feb 03, 2022
Welcome to another scintillating podcast with The middle Road, a global social impact platform. In today’s episode Nishant Malhotra, Sole Founder of The middle Road platform chats with Simranpreet Singh Oberoi, Co-Founder of an equitable educational driven nonprofit enabling social change and impact at the grassroots level within the Indian ecosystem. The middle Road is a thought leader startup, that fuses Media and EdTech for a measurable impact. The venture features research-driven publications & articles, online courses, videos & podcasts in a community-led model across diverse themes and topics. Simranpreet Singh Oberoi great to e-meet you for a video podcast to discuss your work and career transition within the development sector. Today’s discussion’s prime purpose is to share with the audience your story in enabling social change and impact within the primary public education system in the Punjab region in India through Sanjhi Sikhiya. Sanjhi Sikhiya is a platform that supports diverse development initiatives across Punjab. Sanjhi Sikhiya’s flagship initiative Punjab Youth Leaders Program (PYLP), a two-year leadership program aims to build a cadre of young leaders across Punjab to innovate and create systemic and sustainable solutions that address the pressing issues of Punjab. Q). Simran, how did your experience at various places and your education at Ashoka University prepare for your work at Sanjhi Sikhiya Foundation? I also had a chat with Anu Prasad here who played a fundamental role in setting up Ashoka University. Q). You worked in diverse roles at various foundations including the present CSR work at Genpact. How did it enable and facilitate a transition as a cofounder of your present non-profit? Let’s begin with your Genpact experience and as a chief project officer at Shoshit Samadhan Kendra (SSK), what were your observations and learnings in schooling for children in the underserved Musahar community. You wore multiple hats in this profile. Share your story. Q). How did the idea of invigorating and educating the youth in the rural region of Punjab occur to you? The Indian primary education system needs an overhauling. 15% of the students in grade 8 could not read grade 2 text. India spent 3.8% of its GDP on education in 2019 compared to a Global average of 4.8% according to UNDP Human Development Report 2019. The figure for Nepal was 5.1%, US 5%, Finland 7.1% for 2019. Finland is a world leader in inventiveness in K12 education. Q): At present you are in 850 schools and plan to reach all the 12,000 primary schools in Punjab by 2025. What strategies are you looking to scale up your operation in terms of partnerships, community driven models etc. for a common social good? A more detailed version refer to The middle Road under Podcast section.
Monday Jan 17, 2022
Monday Jan 17, 2022
Today, I (Nishant Malhotra - Sole Founder of The middle Road thought leader platform) will be covering a brief overview of the Biodiversity Ecosystem. In this educational video/podcast, you will know the origins of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the risks facing the global environment landscape, and the social and economic importance of nature-based systems. It's prudent to know about the Strategic Plan for biodiversity from 2011 to 2020 with a peek at the Global Status of Aichi Biodiversity Goals. The module focuses on the financial tools & metrics to achieve biodiversity goals with a brief overview of Sustainable Finance as an enabler. For the educational video and publication refer to the link here.
Thursday Jan 13, 2022
Thursday Jan 13, 2022
Hello, A very warm welcome to a very insightful and informative podcast from The middle Road platform. This is Nishant Malhotra, your host discussing a special social impact story on Biodiversity. In today's educational podcast, I will share an overview of the biodiversity sector, why the persevering biodiversity sector is key to a more equitable future, its impact on the society observed through the financial sector, sustainable finance, tools, metrics used to measure the impact of human interaction and policies on nature conservation and restoration. Recently, The middle Road became a member of the European Union Business @ Biodiversity platform, a global thought-leading platform enabling social change and impact within the biodiversity-ecosystem. The middle Road is a thought leadership terminal blending Media and EdTech for a more sustainable and equitable future. Key sources of references are Finance for Biodiversity Guide on biodiversity measurement approaches, Positive Impact Finance for Business & Biodiversity, EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 among others. I thank you for listening to this session on biodiversity. More will be posted on The middle Road platform so keep checking the site. Cheers, see you around. This is Nishant Malhotra, Sole Founder of The middle Road platform a global leader in enabling social change and impact for a better tomorrow. Have a good one.
Monday Jan 03, 2022
Monday Jan 03, 2022
This is a special feature on 2021, kickstarts the first podcast on Social Impact Update from The middle Road. Do refer to the add on educational publication following this podcast. This is going to be a regular feature from The middle Road. First a bit about The middle Road platform. Inspired by the seventeen sustainable development goals, and keeping the model simple yet elegant, The middle Road’s mission is to make a holistic change within the world. The startup promotes themes on sustainable development, art, culture, well-being supported by well-rounded and comprehensive online learning initiatives. Despite being a one-person company, The middle Road platform has a global audience with readers and learners from across the globe. Known for its intense and educative reads, insightful and informative podcasts, webinars and videos, and educational online courses, the company is a global thought leader in social impact. The startup is a refreshing change from any of its peers, youthful yet measured, enlightening yet fun, creative yet simplistic, thought-provoking, multifaceted and, instructional. Within a short period, the startup has interviewed leading social enablers across continents, posted research focussed futuristic publications on topics related to the social and development sector artistically leading the way. This read captures some significant news from 2021, especially the reads covered on The middle Road platform. GRAPH DATA SOURCE UNESCO | THE MIDDLE ROAD Note: GERD figures are in PPP$ (constant 2005 prices). Many of the underlying data are estimated by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics for developing countries, in particular. Furthermore, in a substantial number of developing countries data do not cover all sectors of the economy. GRAPH: SOURCE CLIMATE BONDS INITIATIVE : THE MIDDLE ROAD Asian Development Bank estimates that Asia and the Pacific will need to invest $1.7 trillion per year to support climate and sustainable development goals. Enel, a European multinational is a pioneer in issuing SDG-linked bonds, with coupon payments linked to sustainable development goals. Enel established a Sustainability-Linked Financing Framework to aid issuance of Sustainability-Linked Financing instruments for its Euro Commercial Program. The financing instrument targets Sustainable Development Goal 7 on Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG 7). These bonds have a step-up coupon feature i.e. they have to pay a penalty for missing the key performance indicator mapped to coupon payment. Refer to publications and articles on Sustainable Finance on www.themiddleroad.org to get in-depth knowledge on Sustainable Bonds. If Denmark is a champion of implementing best sustainable practices example promoting cycling as a mode of transport, then Singapore’s 2030 Green Plan is an inspiration for thought leadership within the sustainable development sector. The middle Road envisions Singapore’s 2030 Green Plan to a bell weather effort comparable to the Finland’s or better Nordic countries holistic foray in bettering K-12 education globally. The little Asian dynamo, Singapore plans to invest 50 percent more (200 hectares) of land for nature parks as part of its biodiversity drive. The fact that every household will live within 10 minutes of walk to a park, has numerous positive externalities example healthier life, lower healthcare costs, better wellbeing, more productivity at work, etc. The country is increasingly deploying circular economy solutions and by 2030, expects to reduce waste to landfills by 30 percent. Many ground-breaking initiatives like expanding the cycling network to 1320 km and raising the share of public transportation to 75 percent by 2030 can serve as a beacon for other countries in implementing and understanding impact evaluation to foster a greener tomorrow. Listen Notes # COP26 The 2021 UN Climate Change Conference; Conference of Parties known as COP26 took place in Glasgow this year. The conference committed to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels understanding the impact of climate change would be much lower at these levels compared to the 2 °C agreed under Paris Agreement. At the summit, leaders from more than 120 countries representing about 90 percent of the world’s forest pledged to halt and reverse deforestation by 2030. The $100 billion climate finance contribution pledged every year at COP9 held at Copenhagen summit, Denmark is puny when compared to the $5.2 trillion post-tax energy subsidies roughly (0.37 percent of Global GDP in 2017) based on IMF estimates. The coming together of more than 500 global financial services firms to commit $130 trillion roughly 40 percent of the world’s financial assets for climate change aligned with the Paris agreement and limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius helps to override the financial gap discussed earlier in implementing sustainable development goals per year. COP26 emphasized collaboration and the importance of civic societies in limiting loss due to climate change and promoting the Paris agreement through various actors’ example indigenous people and local people for effective implementation of the climate change agenda. Podbean | Spotify | Apple # Science & Technology In 2021, the United States and China landed a rover on MARS, a fantastic achievement in the realms of space exploration. Space travel got a boost this year with space exploration by Virgin, SpaceX, and Blue Origin. UNESCO is a leading publication that discusses the interaction of science, its transition towards a greener, digitally connected society and public policy? In the last few years, the world has made critical progress as digitalization and technology penetrate our lives. But has the technology created an inclusive society? How has gender parity been measured over these years? How are different countries measuring comparatively on the research and innovation parameters? Gender Equality is one key area where a lot of progress has been made in many countries covered. Globally, women have achieved parity (45–55%) at the bachelor’s and master’s levels of study and 44% at the Ph.D. level but the parity reduces as women pursue their careers. Women are also gaining in research as a profession; women researchers were one-third of all researchers in 2018, up from 28.4% in 2013. 2021 WILL ALSO GO DOWN IN HISTORY BOOKS, AS THE YEAR SCIENTISTS DISCOVERED THE FIRST MILLIPEDE IN THE WORLD HAVING 1306 LEGS IN AUSTRALIA. A SOFT YET SIGNIFICANT DISCOVERY. Did you know, according to the World Bank, 1 million out of the present 8 million animal and plant spices are facing extinction. + citation needed
Sunday Dec 12, 2021
Sunday Dec 12, 2021
Welcome to another smashing episode from The middle Road. In this episode, Nishant Malhotra welcomes Dr. Helene Clark for the thought leadership podcast series. In today’s podcast, Nishant chats with a leading global expert and social change maker within the International Development Sector. Dr. Helene Clark is the Founder and Director of ActKnowledge, and Board Chair of The Center for Theory of Change, a global thought leader in enabling social change and impact within the social impact sector. ActKnowledge is a social enterprise that connects social change practice with rigorous study of how and why initiatives work. ActKnowledge is the founder of Center For Theory of Change, a nonprofit focusing on outcome-driven intervention based strategic framework tool called Theory of Change (ToC). Theory of Change is a valuable tool to understand the impact of policies/interventions/programs (measures) connected to understand the outcomes linked to these measures. Download from Global Directories below Apple | Spotify | Listen Notes | TuneIn | Cast Box Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/episode/5TsdW6YUdbXbpQAphuVszQ Apple: https://podcasts.apple.com/in/podcast/the-middle-road/id1481049835 Listen Notes: https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/the-middle-road/episode-24-the-middle-road-cNKEO0Vxrot/ TuneIn: https://tunein.com/podcasts/Education-Podcasts/The-middle-Road-p1357483/?topicId=168391019 Cast Box: https://castbox.fm/episode/Episode-25%3A-The-middle-Road-interviews-Dr.-Helene-Clark-Founder-and-Director-of-ActKnowledge%2C-and--Board-Chair-of-The-Center-for-Theory-of-Change-id2208219-id450273781?country=gb Theory of Change Theory of Change is today ubiquitous within the international development sector to understand, analyze, plan and implement long-term change through backward mapping of interventions to define the sustainable outcome. Theory of Change technique/program logic can be implemented in any organization or within our lives to bring about a more holistic change for the better. The conversation focuses on the development and importance of the Theory of Change program logic within the international development sector. Helene breaks down the Theory of Change framework to explain the causal intervention-linked outcome-based methodology and shares a snapshot of its evolution. Helene, highlights key concepts in ToC, for example, the difference between outcome and output, backward mapping of interlinked interventions for the desired outcome etc. We discuss at length how ToC can be used in the educational institutes with real-time examples to foster a long-term strategic change including embedding the concept in the curriculum and about the prestigious Theory of Change certification. Dr. Helene, I thank you for taking time for a fabulous chat about your work. You are a leading authority on the Theory of Change (ToC) framework. Theory of Change is one of the most critical program logic for evaluating Impact Evaluation, made famous by the Aspen Roundtable for Community Change, ActKnowledge initiatives, publications and outreach on this topic. Helene, as the Founder and Director of ActKnowledge, and Board Chair of The Center for Theory of Change, do share the evolution of this multi-stakeholder community-driven outcome focused framework for measuring the impact of projects/ interventions especially from the early 90s. But first, for the benefit of the audience, since we would be speaking about interventions repeatedly, please explain in your parlance, how would you define interventions. Do elaborate on your definition of strategy. Theory of Change concept came through a collaborative movement among multiple actors/entities. ASPEN, ActKnowledge, and other global actors/entities played a monumental role in designing the Theory of Change framework. How did these partnerships evolve over time? In your paper Theory of Change Technical Papers (Dr. Dana H. Taplin, Dr. Heléne Clark, Eoin Collins, and David C. Colby) and Basics, A Primer on Theory of Change, (Dr. Dana H. Taplin, Dr. Heléne Clark), you mention the importance of long-term goals and back mapping a series of interconnected interventions in the short, medium, and long term to achieve outcomes. This concept was revolutionary and counterintuitive to the prevailing thought of following forward-looking indicators to make a long-term change. Please, explain the process of enunciating a simple example to understand the idea better? * How does the qualitative framework of the Theory of Change facilitate a change in the outcome through casually linked interventions? Can you explain through a simple example? In the PACE Theory of Change: Discussion Paper Prepared by Zabi Rahat and Eoin Collins, highlights the importance of driving long-term outcome-driven change within the civic societies significantly through universities. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has identified ways in which universities can engage in sustainable development goals. 1 How and in what ways should universities use Theory of Change as a tool to implement a holistic mindset change among students. How can ToC engage sustainable development goals as part of the curriculum in educational institutes? Helene chat about your flagship course, the certification course in Theory of Change. How does the course educate people on the theory? How will the certification help in catalyzing a successful and effective career for people within the international development sector? Theory of Change is an important part of impact evaluation, to understand the impact of interventions in accelerating outcome change. Helene, as a leading expert on ToC, how do you think the Theory of Change will evolve not only within the global development sector but also in organizations and civic societies as a strategic tool in driving long-term change in the future. You think it's even more critical especially during the time of the pandemic Before we go to the last question, please share any message for professionals and students who want to make a career in social impact Finally, share with everyone any Aha moment that brings happiness to you. Helene, I deeply appreciate for sharing your thoughts and time as an expert on a strategic tool and technique for understanding, planning, and implementing a long-lasting change within our work and lives. Thank you and hope to keep in touch. Apple | Spotify | Google | Listen Notes | TuneIn | Cast Box References Theory of Change Technical Papers Theory of Change Basics, A Primer on Theory of Change: Helene Clark and Dana Taplin ActKnowledge Presents Theory of Change Online – YouTube video The Community Builder’s Approach to a practical guide to theory development Andrea A. Anderson, Ph.D PACE Theory of Change: Discussion Paper Prepared by Zabi Rahat and Eoin Collins
Friday Dec 03, 2021
Friday Dec 03, 2021
Nishant Malhotra is the Sole Founder of The middle Road platform and host of podcast series The middle Road. This the audio version of the video interview series - Illumo. Nishant Malhotra has an MBA from China Europe International Business School, Shanghai, China and from Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, (SIBM) Pune, India. nishant has a MPA from Ford School, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. A slight correction. Nishant mentions about impact measurement, the framework is SROI. SIBM is a leading business school in India. SIBM Team: "SIBM Pune is delighted to have hosted Mr. Nishant Malhotra, Founder and CEO, The Middle Road OPC Pvt Ltd. and our dear alumnus from the Batch of 2002 as a part of the video interview series - Illumo. 'Sustainable Finance' has emerged as the new buzz word but it has also unfurled new career paths for future corporate leaders. While the interview did revolve around the scope and trends related to Sustainable Finance, by leveraging his experience and knowledge, Mr. Malhotra also explained other topics such as Impact Investing, Green Bond Market Development, Partnership for Action on Green Economy and more. This was a wonderful opportunity to have learnt lessons from an industry leader in the field of finance. We are grateful to Mr. Nishant Malhotra for his time and guidance and will continue to have more such knowledgeable conversations as a part of the Illumo series." Highlighted section is message from the SIBM team.
The middle Road is a thought leader platform focusing on social impact. The startup is blending Media and EdTech to educate, and promote knowledge, ideas, and enable sustainable change through synergistic themes on finance & economics, science & technology, art & culture, and fitness & well-being.
As a thought leader, The middle Road synergizes all actors within the development sector for a measurable impact.
Image: Nishant Malhotra Host