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TBI Blogs: From Gurgaon to Antarctica – a Young Indian’s Journey to Educate Others About Climate Change

2041 is an organisation that organises a global expedition to Antarctica to educate participants about climate change and its impact. One of this year’s participants, this Gurgaon-based Googler plans to share her learnings in India through different student, corporate, and entrepreneurial programmes.

Digantika Mitra, a Gurgaon-based Programmatic Account Manager with Google, views climate change as the single largest and most grievous issue faced by mankind. Studying climate change in detail helped her understand that in spite of its drastic impact, very little is known or being done about this phenomenon. This inspired her to apply for participation in the International Antarctic Expedition 2017, a leadership programme hosted by world renowned environmentalist Dr. Robert Swan. She is currently crowdfunding on Wishberry to raise INR 6 lakhs for funding her travel to this expedition.

Digantika has been working with Google since 2010. She was among the first few people to start Google’s Programmatic Business in India. Apart from being a part of one of Google’s fastest growing portfolios globally, Digantika has always found a way of giving back to society. She is a part of the GooglersGive leadership team at Google. Herein, she manages strategic relationships with Indian non-profits, increasing employee engagement and giving.

One of her planned initiatives was with Teach for India, wherein Googlers were given an opportunity to teach underprivileged kids about arts, science and the internet.

Digantika Mitra
Digantika Mitra

Last year, she was a part of the Jagriti Yatra, a 15-day 8,000 km. long journey to various towns and villages across India for understanding a way to develop sustainably. She was able to gain deep knowledge of social entrepreneurship through meetings with successful social entrepreneurs during this journey. This expedition to Antarctica won’t be her first experience with adventure and negative temperatures. Digantika has also trekked in the Himalayas, and to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, always making sure to pick up any trash to maintain the pristineness of the mountains.

Digantika’s deep study about climate change introduced her to Dr. Robert Swan’s work and his programme. The International Antarctic expedition is a programme that combines leadership development and education with frequently updated information on climate change and sustainability. It allows the participants to personally experience the adverse effects of climate change on the planet. Most importantly, this expedition churns out leaders who can make informed decisions to drive economic growth by ensuring sustainable development and preserving the planet. Digantika is one of the 100 participants selected from more than 5,000 applications submitted across the world for this expedition.

During her time in Antarctica, Digantika will explore the Antarctic Peninsula and gain first-hand experience of the continent’s fragile ecosystem. Experienced guest speakers will teach valuable skills to build and guide successful teams at work, home, and within the community. She will be trained in sustainable business generation through the promotion of recycling and renewable energy. This expedition will enable her to learn about the enormous impact of climate change due to human activities in the most delicate and crucial places in the world.

Witnessing this pressing issue larger-than-life will inspire her to take strong steps towards bringing about a significant change.

Antarctica - Digantika's climate change expedition

After the expedition, Digantika wants to be a leader and grow businesses and communities without compromising on the environment. She plans to develop programmes for corporate leaders and entrepreneurs to educate them about their impact on ecosystems. There are many people who want to indulge in sustainable development but cannot figure out the way forward. Through simple modules, Digantika wants to make it easier for these people to join the cause. Her objective is to incorporate small changes and schedules into the lives of students and people in her community. These could go a long way in collectively creating a more sustainable world.

You can contribute to Digantika’s crowdfunding initiative here in order to help her cover the expedition fee and travel cost.

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