I’m applying for attending the Learning Societies Unconfernce to be held near Mumbai between 28 Feb and 04 Mar 2012. The 3 questions they asked me, and my responses.


Please describe yourself and your own learning/unlearning journey in a short personal note (up to 500 words) which can be shared with the larger group. *

My internet social profiles say: “Entrepreneur/ Drupal, Open Source evangelist/ Green activist/ Pilgrim/ In pursuit of a purposeful life”.

I’ve been an entrepreneur for most of my working life. Have mastered the art of *delaying gratification* (even though it is beginning to hurt the financial planning for the family a bit), i’ve learnt to *live fairly frugally*. Actually, i’ve always had an intuitive pull towards frugal and sustainable living; about sharing and co-ownership; towards spiritual values. This pull led to a search for the divine fairly early on in my life, leading first to a crisis/depression, eventually resulting in a *search* for health, wellness, and a *deep seeking*. I still do not know what i am seeking; what i am after – so end up calling myself a *pilgrim, in pursuit of a purposeful life*.

Yet i know where to look – sustainable farming, renewable energy, meditation, Gandhi, writing of life, travelling, photography, advocacy, a bit of coaching, employee-owned companies, and entrepreneurship.


What kind of learning communities and learning experiments have you been trying co-create? *

“Beyond Tech” is an initiative i’ve seeded at Srijan to help bring diversity and breadth to people. http://www.srijan.in/beyond-tech. This year my goal is to startup two more projects:

a) invest in a large piece of land in the mountains alongwith Navin Pangti – with the objective of forming a base for experimentation with *BioChar* for increased organic agriculture productivity, for regenerating degraded forests around using “seedball sowing”, and eventually creating a sustainable local economy with an element of eco-tourism.

b) create an e-commerce property to bring give market access for natural and wellness products to self-help groups and social communities around the country

What questions, topics, workshops, proposals, projects, invitations, etc. related to unfolding learning societies would you like to contribute and further explore in this unconference? *

The two projects listed above. BioChar is of keen interest to me given its tremendous benefits in increasing agricultural produce naturally, and its tremendous potential in acting as a *carbon sink*. As an example, 1 ton of BioChar = 3 tonnes of CO2.