Murugan Vasudevan, CEO of the Veddis Foundation

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CEO of the Veddis Foundation, Murugan Vasudevan, on trust-based philanthropy in India and the importance of deploying 100% heart + 100% head to solving problems through philanthropy.


The Veddis Foundation is based in India and is both a grant-maker and an operating foundation. They make unrestricted, multi-year grants and approach programs with a view to pilot, scale, institutionalise and exit. They’re keen on investing at the intersection of policy, technology and impact.


We explore their approach to trust-based philanthropy and learn how they go about building trust among all stakeholders. We get an insider’s look at how they operate and what success looks like at the Veddis Foundation.


Before venturing into the world of impact and philanthropy, Murugan spent 20 years working at Cisco in India, and he takes the opportunity to shed light on corporate philanthropy in India and identifies gaps that present opportunities for improvement.


Murugan notes that “the future is looking bright for India” and we get a glimpse of why the philanthropy sector in India is so vibrant, exciting and full of opportunity right now.


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About Murugan Vasudevan


Murugan Vasudevan is the CEO of Veddis Foundation. Veddis invests in organizations working at the intersection of tech, policy, and social impact.


Veddis also partners with governments on policy implementation, effective public service delivery and governance.


Previously, Murugan led Cisco’s social innovations group, investing and building solutions in the areas of critical human needs, education, and economic empowerment. Prior to his move to the impact ecosystem, he helped build several multi-million dollar businesses for Cisco as part of the emerging solutions group.


Murugan is an Aspire Circle Fellow, is on the boards of Common Purpose India and the Alliance for Scaling Policy Impact through Research and Evidence (an initiative of J-PAL South Asia), and advises several social impact startups on strategy and partnerships.