Brief Biography

Karuna Kumar is a cross disciplinary leader with a body of work spread across three industries – Media, Private Sector and International Development, in diverse geographies from the US and UK to Asia and the Pacific. She is currently leading the mandate of Future of Work, preparing governments across Asia and the Pacific for disruption in the context of the fourth industrial revolution and driving Youth Employment in the region, working closely with governments, businesses and inter-agency networks.

Prior to working for UNDP, she was serving the young people’s agenda for UNICEF, Regional Office for South Asia, developing and curating, strategically driven portfolio of youth empowerment projects. Karuna has previously worked extensively for the private sector, aligning some of the most renowned corporate brands with social purpose and social impact. Her body of work at Nestlé was instrumental in aligning the corporate brand with the social purpose of improving the secondary school dropout rates for adolescent girls in India.

She started her career as a financial journalist, and has reported on the Political Economy, Corporate, FinTech, International Development and Economic Policy, interviewing a wide range of stakeholders from governments to industry, civil society to academia.

Karuna is an alumna of Columbia University in the City of New York; University of Westminster in London and Delhi University in India. She is also a former Thomson Reuters fellow and is a World Bank Group certified Future of Work advocate.

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