T.V. Seshadri is group executive, GP&S Asia/Pacific for MasterCard Worldwide. He has held several management roles within MasterCard over the last 15 years in Singapore and India. Prior to joining MasterCard, Seshadri spent 11 years with Bank of America across India, Hong Kong, & Singapore.
Seshadri first joined the Project Inspire judging panel in 2014 and judged again in 2015. In preparation for the 2016 challenge, we asked Seshadri to look back at how far Project Inspire has come and what the Judges are looking for this year.
What are the most memorable experiences you have as a Project Inspire Judge?
It is amazing and impressive to see how Project Inspire has scaled new heights each year since its launch in 2011. Last year, the bar was raised even further with innovative enhancements to the program like the semi-final crowd funding round hosted by Chuffed.Org and an enhanced selection process with assistance from Independent Projects Analysis and Mazars. These changes do full justice to the quality of submissions, which improves each year. The program has achieved a high degree of maturity and eminence thanks to the passion, diligence and dedication of the Project Inspire team.
This year’s theme ‘Empowering Women and Girls Through Safety and Security’ needs to be addressed now, because…
The focus on Safety and Security and its role in empowering Women and Girls is absolutely the need of the hour. Our societies are ageing, technology is disrupting industries while offering new opportunities and economies are looking to transform themselves. Women are playing a pivotal role in driving change across every walk of life; as leaders, in workplaces, and in homes. Safety and Security, in all its facets, is the foundation we need to enable women achieve their fullest potential and thus enrich our society.
Who should apply for Project Inspire?
Safety and Security has many dimensions to it; personal, financial, health, environment etc. and offers tremendous scope for projects empowering disadvantaged women and/or girls. I encourage applicants to submit projects across the full spectrum of possibilities under the Safety and Security theme.
What are your expectations for the 2016 challenge?
I certainly expect Project Inspire will break new ground in the 2016 challenge. We have a very powerful theme this year. So, in addition to a large number of entries as in prior years, I am certain we will uncover some real gems in the process of selecting our finalists. The team has a robust evaluation process, combining qualitative and quantitative factors. I am confident all the finalists will be truly outstanding – a cut above the rest. Judging will be a real challenge!
Thank you for your insights Sesh!
The Project Inspire team is now sorting applications for Project Inspire 2016. If you managed to get your application in by 1st July 2016, we’re now reading it! Stay tuned for updates on semi-finalist announcements by following us on Facebook, Twitter and subscribing to our newsletters.
Written by Maria Wesson
Edited by Amra Naidoo