Who is Anantha Krishnan ?

Anantha krishnan has over 40 years of experience in international development work, including over 15 years  with the UN in in Nairobi Kenya ( UNEP and UN Habitat) engaged in  urban youth empowerment initiatives, policy and research, advocacy, program management as well as development and implementation of projects. Currently holding the position of  Secretary General of Urban Economy Forum, looking at the ways and means to strengthen the economies of cities and towns, supporting the implementation  of Sustainable Development Goals at the City level and to deliver services including in the housing and health sectors. Contributed (2014-18) to addressing energy poverty issues among the internally displaced and conflict affected populations in the North East of Nigeria with the introduction of clean cooking stoves initiative led by a Nigerian NGO, ICEED. In 2019, completed consultancy assignments for the World Bank in Nigeria, working on the implementation of the Multisectoral Crisis Recovery Project (MCRP) in Nigeria to support peacebuilding and reconstruction in the Boko Haram insurgency affected areas in the North East of the country.  In 2016, participated on behalf of UN-Habitat in conducting a Recovery and Peacebuilding Assessment, a joint UN/EU/World Bank/ Nigerian Government initiative in the North East of Nigeria. Other relevant work includes a consultancy assignment for the Norwegian Government on studying the impact of urbanization on women’s empowerment. Also completed a strategy document for UNIDO on youth employment and entrepreneurship. A position paper was developed by him   for UN-Habitat on Urban Basic Services. He has also conducted housing market studies in Myanmar, Mozambique and Tanzania. .  

Has been associated with organizations in China and the UN in setting up a Youth entrepreneurship Award. He was also the editor of the Chinese/English bilingual magazine, UNITY.

Over the past decade Ananthakrishnan has focused on innovative programs furthering the agenda of local governance, children, youth and gender equity, and has managed a portfolio of such programming for UN-HABITAT headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, totaling approximately US $2 million annually.  In his capacity as Chief of the Partners and Youth Branch of UN-HABITAT, he helped the agency become the leader within the United Nations system in recognizing and tapping into the positive potential of youth and working for a rights based approach to children and youth issues in urban areas. He was instrumental in setting up and managing a fund for urban youth, to benefit youth initiatives at the local level.

In Norway, he has worked at the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Local Government and the Ministry of Environment. Other organisations that he has worked in Norway include the International Peace Research Institute (PRIO),  Forum for Environment and development and the Anti-racist Centre and NORAD, the Norwegian agency for international development. In addition to his current stay in Cuba, he has lived and worked in Tanzania, India, Kenya, Nigeria and the UK. He is on the board of several organisations including FLEDGE, Glocal Forum and ICEED

He is a Norwegian national of Indian origin with strong African connections. Holds master’s degrees in civil engineering (IIT) and Social Studies (Bradford) and post graduate qualification in International Management. Has written several articles and papers.