Hassan Virji is the Emeritus Executive Director of START International, Inc., a non-governmental organization operating as the Global Change System for Analysis, Research and Training, that he established in 1992. His expertise is in building systems-level capacities in global change to foster resilient and sustainable societies. He is a graduate of the Universities of Daressalaam, Nairobi and Madison-Wisconsin. He worked at the University of Nairobi and the University of Wisconsin, and was a Senior Fellow at the Wissenschaft Kolleg in Berlin. During 1983-1988 he was Associate Director of the Climate Dynamics Program of the US National Science Foundation; during 1989-1990, Deputy Executive Director of the International Geosphere- Biosphere Programme, and Executive Secretary of the US Inter-agency Subcommittee on Global Change Research (1991-1992) where he was involved in setting up the US Global Change Research Program. Dr. Virji is a National Associate Member of the National Research Council of the National Academies of the USA. He is a member of the Governing Board of CRDF Global of USA, and previously was on the Boards of International Centers of excellence located at CSIR/South Africa, Academia Sinica/Taipei, Education, Learning, and Research for Humanitarian Assistance/UK, and the Manila Observatory of the Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. During 2014 he was a Visiting Professor at Kyoto University, an Adjunct Professor in Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center and Geography at the University of Maryland, College Park during 2016-2018, a Visiting Professor at Kyoto during 2014, and at Keio, and Hiroshima Universities in Japan during 2019, and currently is a member of the External Evaluation Committee of the International Leadership Development Program of Hiroshima University. He is a member of the editorial boards of “Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability”, “Advances in Climate Change Research”, “Climate, Disasters, and Development” and “Progress in Disaster Science”.
Dr. Paul Shrivastava is Chief Sustainability Officer of Penn State University. He is also Director of Sustainability Institute, and Professor of Management at the Smeal College of Business. Prior to this he served as the first Executive Director of Future Earth global research platform.
Paul is an academic entrepreneur. He was part of the team that founded Hindustan Computer Ltd., one of India’s largest computer companies. He founded the non-profit Industrial Crisis Institute, Inc. New York. He founded the journal Organization and Environment, (published by Sage Publications). He was founding President and CEO of eSocrates, Inc., a knowledge management software company, and the founding Chair of the Organizations and the Natural Environment Division of the Academy of Management.
Paul’s research uses science and arts to develop transdisciplinary solutions to sustainability challenges. His current focus is on implementation of Sustainable Development Goals. He is working with colleagues at Penn State, at Future Earth and at the United Nations to develop programs for implementing SDGs, and monitoring and measuring their progress. He believes that infusing sustainability across research, teaching, community and student engagement at Penn State University’s 23 campuses can help us implement sustainability across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Paul received his Ph. D. from the University of Pittsburgh. He has published 17 books and over 100 articles in refereed and scholarly journals. He has served on the editorial boards of numerous leading management education journals. His work was recognized with a Fulbright Senior Scholar Award and IIM Calcutta Distinguished Alumni Award.