It’s not every day that someone who is concerned about environment or protecting an endangered species actually takes an initiative to make a considerable difference. But we talk about the exceptions and that’s what Krithi Karath has been.
A Ph.D in Environmental Science and Policy from Duke University, she has always been broadly interested in human-environment interactions, particularly focusing on protected areas and their relationship with people and biodiversity.
“My parents, Dr. Parthibha and Dr. Ullas Karanth provided me a wonderful childhood and supported my interests (towards wildlife). As a child, I spent a lot of time tagging along with my father to see wildlife and visit wildlife conservation zones in India” says Krithi.
Today, Krithi works on the human dimensions of conservation. Since 2001, she has conducted various researches in India that encompass a broad range of issues examining human dimensions of wildlife conservation and has also conducted macro-level studies assessing patterns of mammal extinctions in India, impacts of wildlife tourism in reserves, sociological consequences of voluntary resettlement and, more recently, on understanding ecological and social dimensions of human-wildlife conflicts and land use change.
She has published over 18 scientific articles in international peer-reviewed journals and has edited a special issue on India for the Journal Biological Conservation. She has even received grants and awards from the National Science Foundation, Society for Conservation Biology as well as Yale, Duke, Columbia, Carnegie Mellon and University of Cambridge. Her work has been featured in National Geographic, all major Indian newspapers, and several blogs. Recently, Krithi was chosen for the National Geographic Society’s 10,000th grant for research on wildlife.
According to her, wildlife conservation is of extreme importance in today’s scenario. She says,
India, especially, is growing rapidly. Although economic growth and development are much needed, it must not come at the loss of our conserved areas and wildlife. We have just 4% of the country under protected areas and a lot of our biodiversity is in our parks.
According to her, the way forward should be by improving the current parks and protecting other areas where wildlife persists. All is not yet lost, and we can do a lot to conserve our diverse wildlife and prevent any more extinction.
It was truly a great inspiration for us to interact with Krithi and we write this article with the sheer hope that more and more people will walk on a path led by her, towards a greener and sustainable future.
Author: Mansi Bagga
Mansi Bagga is an MBA student, pursuing a course in Communication Management. She is a highly enthusiastic person, always willing to learn more and do more. She is an Indian by origin and a Thai citizen by virtue. She can be reached at [email protected].
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