Dr. Rama Mani
Senior Research Associate, Centre for International Studies, University of Oxford; Director, Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect: Southern Cultural Perspectives.
Dr. Rama Mani is an expert in international peace and security, a poet, and a performing artist. She is a Senior Research Associate at the University of Oxford’s Centre for International Studies. She is a Councilor of the World Future Council, a body of 50 distinguished world leaders committed to preserving the rights of future generations. With Prof. Jean Houston and Dr. Scilla Elworthy, Rama is the Co-Founder of ‘Rising Women, Rising World’, a global initiative of women leaders whose aim is to ‘co-create a world that works for all’. She serves on the Jury of the ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’ or the Right Livelihood Award.
Dr. Mani is an Associate Fellow and former Director of the Global Peace and Security Course at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, equipping national and international policy makers to respond to new security challenges. Rama was earlier Executive Director of the International Centre for Ethnic Studies, Sri Lanka’s pre-eminent policy and research centre addressing conflict, peace, and human rights. She served as Oxfam GB’s Africa Strategy Manager, based in Addis Ababa and Kampala, working with decision makers, humanitarians and grassroots communities across Africa’s warzones to develop innovative policy responses to war economies and complex humanitarian crises. She was the Senior External Relations Officer to the Commission on Global Governance. She helped shape its seminal report, Our Global Neighbourhood (OUP, 1995) and launch it globally on the 50th anniversary year of the United Nations.
Based on her 25 years of experience in peacebuilding, governance and strategic leadership at both policy and grassroots level, Rama developed ‘Theatre of Transformation’ as an innovative vehicle to address critical global crises. Since 2014, she has offered over 50 tailor-made performances, keynotes, seminars and courses in partnership with international, humanitarian, cultural and academic institutions around the world, to catalyse collective and creative solutions to today’s crises. All her programmes also raise funds for the peace and solidarity missions she undertakes in countries in conflict, and the innovative humanitarian projects she supports directly.
Rama offers innovative seminars and courses for leaders, policy makers, students and grassroots activists, incorporating this transformative approach. She teaches policy makers and practitioners at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, as an Associate Fellow. She is on the Faculty of the new M.A. in Transitional Justice at the Geneva Academy for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, at the Graduate Institute and University of Geneva. She also teaches at St. Gallen University, Switzerland, and is invited to teach at diverse universities and institutes, and in countries in conflict and transition around the world.
Since 1992, Rama has partnered with and advised several United Nations agencies, departments and programmes. She serves on several international boards including the Advisory Board of NATO Defence College, and UNESCO-CISH International Centre for Human Sciences (Lebanon). She was formerly the Vice Chair of the Academic Council of the United Nations System (ACUNS), and on the Board of Directors of the Foundation for the Future. She authored “Beyond Retribution: Seeking Justice in the Shadows of War” (Polity/Blackwell: 2002/2007) and co-edited “Responsibility to Protect: Cultural Perspectives from the Global South” (Routledge: 2011).
In 2013, Rama received the Peter Becker Peace Prize in Germany for the combined impact of her scholarship and peace activism. Rama has a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Cambridge, UK, an M.A. in International Affairs from Johns Hopkins University, USA, and a B.A. in Political Science and French Literature from Bryn Mawr College, USA. Rama grew up in India and graduated from Cathedral School, Bombay. Rama lives in France, near Geneva, Switzerland, and is a French national and overseas citizen of India.
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“Rama Mani, Founder, Theatre of Transformation Co-Founder, Rising Women Rising World” – The European Business Review