Jessica Seddon
Dr Jessica Seddon is a Senior Fellow at the IIT Madras Centre for Technology and Policy and the Founder of Okapi, an India-based research and consulting group focused on institutional design for complex goals in changing times. Her research and consulting focus on design and evaluation of informational interventions, including investments in generating and/ or managing information, formation of metrics, and policy and regulation toward information technology. Her work cuts across sectors - from infrastructure to air quality to healthcare - to enable innovative approaches to achieving collective purpose. Dr Seddon has advised a number of state and national government initiatives in India, most recently the Prime Minister’s National Transport Development Policy Committee and the High Powered Expert Committee on Urban Infrastructure. She is on the advisory boards of the Wilderhill Global Clean Energy Index (NEX), as well as Indian startups Prakti Design Labs and career discovery service Vidyartha.

Dr Seddon has published book chapters and articles on infrastructure, Indian political economy, IT and governance, environmental regulation and other institutional design topics in international academic and policy venues including Cambridge University Press, Journal of Development Economics, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Foreign Affairs and Harvard Business Review. Her work has been supported by, the International Development Research Centre, Stanford University, University of California San Diego, and the ICICI Foundation among others. 

Prior to founding Okapi, Dr Seddon served as Head of Research at the Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Director of the Centre for Development Finance and Professor at the Institute for Financial and Management Research in Chennai. She was also a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow with the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Dr Seddon has held research positions as Assistant Professor, Political Economy, at UC San Diego, and in the Chief Economist’s Offices of the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank. She earned her Ph.D. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business and her B.A. from Harvard University. 

Articles By Jessica Seddon
Building a new house, returning to an original foundation
Posted On: 05 Nov 2014

Most commentators in the Planning Commission debate believe that the new body should be some form of national think-tank focusing on the technical function of formulating an economy-wide strategic vision. In this article, Seddon and Srinivasan argue that the choice of strategic vision is political as well as technical, and make a case for a strengthened Inter-State Council to succeed the Commission and perform both roles.
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