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Our Team

Amol Umbarje, Master’s in Social Work (Urban and Rural Community Development)
Senior Coordinator
Amol has graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and MSW in Urban and Rural Community Development with experience in the field of Social Development. He has been working with Sustainability Initiatives as Programme coordinator since 2015 and helps in helps in implementing projects and activities. Amol is responsible for coordinating and managing awareness & outreach events, training programmes and public seminars in
promoting awareness in various groups about sustainable development and green buildings.He looks after media management and communication for the trust, networking activities, administrative work and promotional activities for the organization through social media, awareness, outreach and capacity building events. Amol has successfully organized many Conferences, seminars, events and awareness programmes for capacity building and awareness related to sustainable architecture, urban and environmental planning, etc. for Sustainability Initiatives. Amol is also expertise in Preparing Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Impact Assessment and Corporate Environment Responsibility report.


Anagha Paranjape–Purohit, B.Arch, M. Planning (Environmental Planning)
Anagha is an architect – environmental planner with more than 12 years of professional experience in the field of Architecture, Sustainable Design and Urban-Environmental Planning and is a Director (Partner) at VK:e environmental, Pune. A Graduate of Pune University and Arizona State University, Anagha has multinational experience in countries like USA, India and Sweden. Anagha is also an academician and teaches post graduate programs in Architecture, Energy and Environment. She also conducts training on diverse themes such as Green Buildings, Environmental Impact Assessments, Urban Air Quality Management Solid Waste Management, Green Productivity and Sustainable Architecture. She is a member of various Boards and Committees at national and local level in the areas of Green Buildings, Urban Planning and Energy Efficient Buildings. Anagha is an empaneled expert with Bureau of Energy Efficiency, is a GRIHA Trainer and IGBC Evaluator. Additionally, she is involved in the Development Plan for the city of Pune and framing of environmentally sensitive Development Control Rules for the city. Through Sustainability Initiatives, Anagha is active in creating white papers on Indian cities, policies and frameworks that are used for influencing and making urban policy in India. She serves on various National and State level committees on Sustainability issues, Environmental Planning and Green Buildings. She writes a blog ( which focuses on urban issues faced in Indian cities.


Anuja Deo-Gokhale, B.Arch., M. Planning
Anuja graduated as an architect from Pune in 2005 and completed her Masters in urban and regional planning from CEPT university, Ahmedabad in 2007. She has an experience of working mainly in the field of real estate in addition to architectural and teaching fields. She has worked with Knight Frank India, an International property consultant. Her profile of work includes majorly preparation of development option studies, feasibility studies for real estate and infrastructure projects in and out of Pune. Presently she is working with VK:a architecture and Sustainability Initiatives on projects and research on urban planning related issues.


Apoorva Kulkarni, B.Com., MBA (Marketing)
Apoorva has over 12 years of multifaceted experience from working as a Marketing Executive for Wigan and Leigh College, UK to currently as the Head of Operations for VK:a architecture and its sister concerns VK:e environmental and VK:i interiors. Human Resources, MIS- Quality Control and Marketing have been her domain areas. She has worked in the UK for 6 years; which provided her substantial exposure to the British culture and way of business. She has worked very closely with the local government and its departments such as Environmental and Planning department during her stay in the UK.  She has been instrumental in formulating the ISO 9001- 2008 system of VK:a and has been representing the organisation as the Management Representative for the past 3 years. Apoorva is currently focused on Marketing activities for the organisation in order to enhance the image of the Group as a strong one-stop consultancy consortium which have carved a special place in the field of built environment. Her interests in Sustainable Design and Environmental Planning can be seen through her enthusiastic involvement in VK:e environmental where she is also a Partner. She contributes to Sustainability Initiatives through managing public relations and initiating various awareness programmes and outreach events.


Dwaipayan Chakravarty, B. Arch., M.Arch. (Urban Design)
Dwaipayan is an Architect and Urban Designer based in Pune, Maharashtra. After completing his M.Arch (Urban Design) from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi in 2005, he had been working as a Senior Architect in some prominent firms of Pune, after a memorable stint with Council of Architecture’s academic unit – NIASA. Later, after 5 years as the Senior Masterplanner at Associated Space Designers Pvt. Ltd., masterplanning large acreage special townships like Nanded City, Life Republic and Oxford Oasis Golf City, he moved on to VK:a Architecture as an Associate, where he looks after a large number of interesting Architectural and Urban Design projects, including Townships. He has taught Urban Design at some prominent schools of architecture in Pune, and remains in touch with teaching and academics. Dwaipayan both specialises and is deeply interested in urbanism, urban design & planning, real estate dynamics, relationship between city & society, architectural education, architectural journalism and technology, and writes frequently on these subjects in various online & print magazines and blogs.


Hrishikesh Kulkarni, B.Arch., M.A. (Environment and Energy)
Hrishikesh Kulkarni is a Director (Partner) at VK:e environmental and VK:a architecture in Pune. He has specific focus on Building Physics & Micro-climate Simulations for built environment projects.  Hrishikesh completed his Diploma in Architecture at the Academy of Architecture, Mumbai and MA Environment & Energy at the Architectural Association (AA), London. He specializes in Performative Architecture, Energy Efficient designs, Human comfort studies and Built Environment simulations. He is a Qualified Assessor of BREEAM, UK (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment). He has lectured at the London Metropolitan University and for the post-graduate programme at the BNCA, Pune and also presented at many seminars and conferences on the subject. Hrishi was instrumental in forming the International Environmental Policy for IKEA, in UK, the world’s biggest furniture company. He was also involved in performative design simulations for master-plan projects in India. In 2007, Hrishi and David Rhodes formed OPEN Arch Ltd. in UK and worked on energy efficient housing and public buildings.  Hrishi is an active member of professional bodies, such as Council of Architecture (CA), Indian Institute of Architects (IIA), Architects, Engineers & Surveyors Association (AESA) and Indian Green Building Council (IGBC). With his involvement he advocates better policies at the government level for changes in rules and regulations.


Namrata Dhamankar-Jadhav, B.Arch., Masters in Environmental Design
Namrata brings with her academic as well as professional knowledge of the environmental design practices. She pursued this agenda by gaining her master’s degree in Environmental Design from Cardiff University, UK. Currently she is a partner at Sprout; a green design consultancy based in Pune and has worked with leading organization like ARUP in the past. Namrata is a faculty at the post graduate department at BNCA and a visiting faculty at Symbiosis’s Institute of Management where she is teaching simulation as a tool for energy efficiency, climate responsive design and building physics. Her personal interest lies in climate responsive architecture & energy efficient buildings. In the past Namrata has also been on the committees involved in creating a vision and concept proposal for Innovations Park in Mumbai under Science and Technology Park & framing recommendations for Tree Policy under Pune Tree Watch. Namrata has also been the Program Coordinator for Youth for Policy and Dialogue (YPD), working on policy making and research of various activities for climate change mitigation. She is also a certified GRIHA Trainer. Namrata was recently awarded a scholarship in Leadership & Management under the Goldman Sach’s 10,000 Women Entrepreneur Program held in association with SIIB and ISB, Hyderabad.


Nikhil Mijar, B.Arch., M. Planning
Nikhil is an Architect and an Urban Infrastructure Planner. After his graduation he pursued his masters from CEPT University, Ahmedabad where he developed a keen interest in working for city level initiatives and was inclined towards the Transportation sector. He later worked extensively on Public Transport of Pune city. He was an integral part of Pune Comprehensive Mobilty Plan, Pune BRTS and currently is working on developing Pune Urban Street Design Guidelines. His interest and expertise in bus based transport system took him to places around the world and 30 cities in India for which he prepared feasibility reports. He also worked on SEZ planning and policy. He has a varied experience of working as an Architect, Urban Planner, Project Co-ordinator and also as a Lecturer. He is a guest faculty in CIRT, Pune. His multiple skills brought him to work in VK group where he looks after Strategy Planning and Business Development for the firm. His focus lies on developing the firms expertise in non-residential sectors , venturing in planning and urban design jobs and working on new construction technologies. Currently he is involved with SI for developing a very innovative and necessary concept of PMPML Bus Route Maps on all Bus Stops in the city.


Poorva Keskar, B.Arch., M.Arch.
Poorva is an architect, environmental designer, educator and an author of numerous articles and research papers on the practice of Environmental Design and Management and is a Director (Partner) at VK:e environmental, Pune. A Graduate from Pune University. With an extensive professional experience of 22 years, she has worked on diverse projects of varying scales and complexities. Poorva spear-headed the structuring of syllabus for Masters program in Environment Architecture at the University of Pune and also headed this Masters Program at BNCA, till 2012. She has been invited by reputed organizations to conduct seminars and workshops in the field of Climate Responsive Architecture, Green Building and Carbon Neutral Buildings. She was among the first few to get qualified as LEED AP and GRIHA Evaluator and Trainer in India. She is a member of the General Body of ADaRSH and also has been instrumental in creating the framework of incentives for GRIHA registered projects for Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation-GRIHA model. Poorva has served as an Environment and Energy expert on various Boards and Committees at local and National level. Poorva is also the Principal-in-Charge at Brick School of Architecture, Pune.


Pranati Shroff-Munot, B.Arch.
With a desire to bridge the gap between builders and architects, after graduating, Ar. Pranati Shroff began her career at the Pune based construction and real estate company – ‘Shroff Group’. As Associate Director and head of the Project and Execution Team at Shroff Group, her role is to upgrade on-site skills, quality control and quality enhancement. She also has to her credit number of eco – interiors with her interior design firm “Space Design”. She pursued her passion in environment by pursuing a course on environmental studies from the Ecological Society of India. A qualified LEED AP and GRIHA trainer, she is a partner at Sprout – a green building consultancy firm. She has been associated with various organizations through holding workshops, conducting conferences and thereby bringing awareness amongst the society about the green movement. She was part of a 15 member delegation chosen by the Swedish Embassy to represent India at Sweden, in October and December 2012. She was subsequently awarded a Diploma in Management by the Swedish Institute, an acclaimed program of the Swedish Government.

Ankit GauravMsc. Environment Science
Asst. Program Manager

Ankit has experience in working with many Corporates, Small & Medium Enterprises, International Organizations, Academia and Non- profits. He is multilingual, creative, curious and solution-oriented professional passionate by sustainability. Ankit is having more than 6 years of working experience and expertise in Environment Conservation, CSR, Project Management, Climate Change, Carbon trading, Community Developments, Renewable
Energy, Waste Management and Water Management. Ankit joins Sustainability Initiatives on January 2020 as an Assistant Programme Manager and responsible for project implementation, writing proposals, researching & outlining annual programme, consultation with experts, organizing events and activities, etc. He also proven his knowledge and expertise in fundraising and team management with successful results. With his fair efforts and team balancing qualities, he developed many community developments projects.

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