Dalberg Advisors appoints Swetha Totapally as the new Asia-Pacific Regional Director, to deliver the firm's vision for impact

I have had the privilege of working with Swetha from our earliest days in APAC. She has been a foundation of our culture and built an enviable portfolio of work that represents the impact Dalberg seeks in the world. Swetha has been a champion of gender equality in the projects she delivers and in the way she has helped Dalberg improve on walking the talk. I am delighted and proud to be passing on the baton of APAC Director into her capable hands,” says Gaurav Gupta, Global Managing Partner, Dalberg Advisors.

Totapally will prioritise addressing key areas including gender equality, climate, education, health, financial inclusion, and the digital divide in new ways. Specifically, she will be looking to forge innovative partnerships, identify different ways to elevate the voices of people and communities in decision making, and build long-term initiatives in service of achieving India@2047 goals.

My observation is that social impact has been growing in importance, but it remains secondary to GDP growth, corporate profits, and political agendas. Too often, rather than addressing inequities, institutions are perpetuating them or making only incremental improvements. The good news is that there is now a growing recognition that we need to put people and the environment first, that we need to address root causes, not just the symptoms of our challenges. Doing so will require transformative changes in how we think and work across all levels of society. I am excited for Dalberg to walk this journey with our partners to bring these changes to life,” says Swetha Totapally, Partner and Regional Director for Asia-Pacific, Dalberg Advisors.

A firm believer in bringing the best of global and local thinking to the firm’s work, Totapally will be leading Dalberg Advisors’ expansion into specific markets across the APAC region.

Our presence in Australia, Hong Kong, and Singapore has helped better serve local needs there and even in countries such as Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar, and the Philippines. Our recent acquisition of the strategic advisory firm, Panl in Vietnam, will help us continue to build local knowledge and tap into deep talent pools,” she adds.

Dalberg Advisors in the Asia-Pacific region first started operations in Mumbai, India, in 2009. It has since completed more than 500 projects, working with a range of stakeholders, including companies, non- profits, investors, foundations, and the government. The firm continues to raise visibility and funding for local non-profits; elevate overlooked issues, such as the challenges faced by sanitation workers; influence policy to increase the effectiveness of government initiatives and services; support global institutions based in India, such as the International Solar Alliance (ISA) and the Global Alliance for Mass Entrepreneurship (GAME); and show how innovative finance can be used to improve the lives of people.


Dalberg Advisors is a strategic advisory firm which combines the best of private sector strategy skills and rigorous analytical capabilities with deep knowledge and networks across emerging and frontier markets. We work collaboratively across the public, private, and philanthropic sectors to fuel inclusive growth and help clients achieve their goals. Dalberg Advisors has more than 550 staff spread across more than 30 locations in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and the US.

Dalberg Advisors is part of the Dalberg Group which comprises six businesses — Dalberg Advisors, Dalberg Data Insights, Dalberg Design, Dalberg Implement, Dalberg Media, and Dalberg Research — and the not-for-profit, Dalberg Catalyst.


Swetha brings over 12 years of experience working with Dalberg Advisors and has been a leader in the firm’s growing gender practice. She helps decision makers recognise the social, economic and political dimensions of issues such as gender-based violence and sex trafficking.

Swetha has led multiple large-scale research-to-action efforts designed to bring the perspectives of people to decision makers, including The State of Aadhaar — the world’s largest and most comprehensive effort to understand users’ experience with digital ID — and a series of studies through the COVID pandemic that helped policymakers understand and respond to the social and economic impact of the crisis on low-income households. Her clients include the United Nations, Omidyar Network India, Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Global Fund to End Modern Slavery.

An advocate for building professional diversity within consulting, Swetha has shaped initiatives such as the Dalberg Asia-Pacific Residency Program that brings in talent from non-consulting backgrounds including NGOs, grassroots organisations or individuals with deep expertise in research. She has steered the region’s recruitment efforts to uphold the firm’s commitment to gender diversity within teams, including senior management.

Prior to joining Dalberg Advisors, Swetha worked at J.P. Morgan, where she served as an advisor to financial institutions. She graduated from Yale University with a degree in Economics and Mathematics. Swetha lives in Mumbai with her husband and three young children.

Shweta Ramesh
Regional Communications Senior Associate, Dalberg Advisors
Email: shweta.ramesh@dalberg.com

Saloni Trivedi
Senior Manager, Current Global
Email: strivedi@currentglobal.com

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