Apr 10 2024

In memory of Cheistha Kochhar (1990–2024)

Cheistha Kochhar was a first year MRes/ PhD student in Organisational Behaviour in the Department of Management. It is with the deepest sadness that we share the news of her tragic passing on 19 March 2024. During her short time in the department and at LSE, Cheistha left a lasting impact on everyone she encountered.

She is remembered among the PhD community for her fierce intelligence, enduring kindness and bright, positive energy which she brought with her everywhere she went, lighting up every room that she entered. Her dedication to helping and supporting others reverberated not only among her colleagues, but also among the students for whom she was a Teaching Assistant.

With her passing, the department and LSE has lost a brilliant student and a promising scholar. She was known for being way ahead of the game; she was already in the process of consolidating her dissertation structure at such an early stage of her course. Cheistha’s academic prowess was highlighted by her numerous awards and accolades including being named the (2020) Clinton Global Fellow, (2019) Irving B. Harris Scholar, (2012) TATA Scholar and (2012) Dr. Roshan Lal Trust Scholar, amongst others. She was also named the (2013) Young India Fellow by Ashoka University.

Bringing more than a decade of experience as an expert in behavioural policy to LSE, Cheistha had most recently worked as a Senior Advisor to the National Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU) of India, where she built and scaled the first BIU in the Global South, highlighting her capacity for truly transformational work.

Cheistha will be deeply missed by all those at LSE who had the privilege to meet her. If you wish to share a memory of Cheistha from her time at LSE, you can visit her memorial page here.

Cheistha’s profile from the Department of Management website:

Cheistha Kochhar holds an MA in International Development and Policy (MAIDP) from the University of Chicago and a BA (Honors) in Economics and Mathematics from the University of Delhi. Her research lies at the intersection of behaviour science and organisational strategy, with a focus on public sector organisations, social enterprises and philanthropies.

Prior to LSE, Cheistha worked as a behavioural policy expert for more than a decade, designing and scaling national programs for global institutions, including McKinsey, University of Chicago and Government of India, amongst others. Most recently, she served as the founding Senior Advisor to the National Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU) of India, where built and scaled the first BIU in the Global South. She was also a member of the founding team of Aadhar (Social Security Number equivalent of India).

Rooted in her professional experience, Cheistha’s research examines collaboration dynamics across and within the boundaries of pro-social organisations, especially towards addressing grand challenges. In an increasingly independent world, she hopes to further our understanding of emerging forms of collaborations within and across non-market organisations and uncover interventions to improve the outcomes of such collaborations. She adopts mixed methods in her research designs.

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1 Response to In memory of Cheistha Kochhar (1990–2024)

  1. Geeta Janmeja says:

    Having known her ever since she was 5 years old, it is impossible to forget her. She will always occupy a special place in our hearts. No one can replace her. May God Bless her .🙏🙏

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