About Us

Every idea deserves a chance to succeed. 

We are Equal Innovation


Equal Innovation was founded on the principal that transformative change in this world happens through innovation, tremendous leaders and entrepreneurs, and a community of partners.  We believe that every idea deserves a chance – to be developed, tested and grown into a product, service, program, company or organization that positively impacts the world. We believe that innovation and entrepreneurs drive impact and sustainability.  

A Global Perspective


Founded in 2014, Equal Innovation has offices in Boston and Bangalore.  Our team of experts has over 30 years of experience working around the world with startups, researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs.  We have worked around the world – from the United States to India, the Middle East, Europe, Canada and with the United Nations worldwide.  Our clients have included Fortune 500 companies, the world’s largest foundations and NGOs, and heads of state.

meet our amazing team

The Faces Behind our Success

We Couldn’t Do It Without Them

Nishith Acharya

Chief Executive Officer

Nish Acharya is CEO of Equal Innovation and consults with some of the world’s leading universities, governments, foundations and companies to assist them with innovation, entrepreneurship and globalization strategies. Nish Acharya is also currently assisting Harvard University & the Brigham & Women’s Hospital with the Stepping Strong Center for Trauma Innovation. He also serves as a Senior Fellow with the Center for American Progress and as a Visiting Fellow with Gateway House: The Indian Council on Global Relations, and as a contributor to Forbes.  

 

Nish is also the author “The India-US Partnership: $1 Trillion By 2030” the path-breaking book recently published by Oxford University Press. In the book, Acharya lays out a roadmap for a relationship between the United States and India that is focused economic and societal development through innovation, entrepreneurship and building the capabilities of institutions in the United States and India to operate more effectively.  Scaling this relationship, Acharya believes, is one of the most important undertakings for both nations in the 21st century.

 

Nish previously served in the Obama Administration, where he was appointed by President Obama as the Director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship and Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Commerce, where he led the President’s efforts to nurture economic growth through innovation, entrepreneurship and commercialization.  As part of his work, Nish managed the President’s National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship – a group of nationally known investors, entrepreneurs and university presidents that inspired the America JOBS Act that legalized crowdfunding.  Nish also engaged with twenty-six federal agencies to provide over $100 million in funds to universities, research centers and companies to increase the commercialization of federally-funded research.  He engaged with over 500 universities and colleges across the United States to boost their programs supporting innovation, entrepreneurship and commercialization.  

Prior to joining the Department of Commerce, Nish served as Executive Director of the Deshpande Foundation, a prominent American philanthropy focused on innovation, entrepreneurship and scalability around the world. Nish led the Foundation’s strategic planning, grant making, evaluation and advocacy efforts.  Under his leadership, the Foundation’s “Sandboxes” – centers of innovation and entrepreneurship have become a leading international model for regional economic development.  During his tenure, the Foundation created a Sandbox in India, which supported innovation and entrepreneurs to reach over one million people.  Nish has also led the Foundation’s venture philanthropy, working to help scale Indian NGO’s like Akshaya Patra and Agastya and the United Way throughout India.  It also created Sandboxes to boost the economies of the Merrimack Valley cities of Lowell, MA and Lawrence, MA and New Brunswick, Canada.    
 
Nish was previously a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bretton Woods Committee, The Indus Entrepreneurs, and the Clinton Global Initiative.  He also served as a Board member of Akshaya Patra USA and the United Way Worldwide Leadership Global Advisory Council.  Nish also served five years as a Presidential Appointee in the Clinton Administration. He has been quoted in many major publications, including Forbes, the Economist, the Boston Globe, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Asian Week, the Times of India, the Economic Times, the Financial Times, Newsweek, BBC and NPR.

Naisargi Desai

Chief Financial Officer

​Naisargi Desai is the Chief Financial Officer for Equal Innovation.  Ms. Desai is also CFO and Treasurer for World Con Construction, a leading construction company based in Gujarat, India.   Ms. Desai has 20 years of experience managing business organizations from professional services to startups and construction.  She is a graduate of HA College of Commerce in Ahmedabad.  

Sameer Acharya

Social Media/Communications

Sameer serves as a Social Media/Communications Consultant for Equal Innovation.  A freelance writer based in Los Angeles, Sameer is helping Equal Innovation develop its Social Media strategy and assists with online and print communications.   Sameer is the author of the first English translation of “Saraswatichandra”, an Indian classic being published by HarperCollins India in 2018. 

Meet Our Partners

Gateway House is a foreign policy think-tank established in 2009, to engage India’s leading corporations and individuals in debate and scholarship on India’s foreign policy and its role in global affairs. Gateway House’s studies program will be at the heart of the institute’s scholarship, with original research by global and local scholars in geo-economics, geopolitics, foreign policy analysis, bilateral relations, democracy and nation-building, national security, ethnic conflict and terrorism, science, technology and innovation, and energy and environment.

Gateway House is a foreign policy think-tank established in 2009, to engage India’s leading corporations and individuals in debate and scholarship on India’s foreign policy and its role in global affairs. Gateway House’s studies program will be at the heart of the institute’s scholarship, with original research by global and local scholars in geo-economics, geopolitics, foreign policy analysis, bilateral relations, democracy and nation-building, national security, ethnic conflict and terrorism, science, technology and innovation, and energy and environment.

Equal Innovation, via its US parent Citizence, has been part of the UN Global Compact since 2015. Our work supports the ten principles of the Global Compact on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruptio.

Nish Acharya, contributes to Forbes Media with a bi-monthly column on topics related to innovation, entrepreneurship and economic development.

The Bretton Woods Committee is the nonpartisan network of prominent global citizens, which works to demonstrate the value of international economic cooperation and to foster strong, effective Bretton Woods institutions as forces for global well-being..