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Kris Rampersad

 Culture and Development
 Human Sciences

: Apr 5, 2016

About Me
  • Country of Operation: Trinidad & Tobago/Caribbean/Global
  • Work Experience (30-plus years) Academia Educator Analyst, Researcher, Author, Facilitator, (Formal/Informal Lifelong Learning Sectors
  • Journalism/Media/NewMedia/Communications-For-Development, MultiMedia Producer, Publisher, Editor: Conventional Media (Print/TV/Radio) New Media: Long, Short & Stage/Cultural Forms (30-plus).
  • 16 Years as Multilateral Environment Development Expert Facilitator/Educator in Cross Global perspectives on Diversity, Migration, Cultural Expressions, Creative Industries & Heritage, Gender Mainstreaming
  • Diplomatic Skills: Facilitating Dialogue/Conversations, Research, Analyses, Critiques, Reviews; Negotiating & Drafting Resolutions, Communiques, Action Plans, Strategies, Policy Development
  • Other Skills: Preparing MultiMedia Materials, Reports, Interviewing, Media Conferences & Events, Hosting, Interviewing, ‘Translating’ Technical/Scientific Texts, Developing & Adjudicating Awards, Policy Development
  • Sustainable Development Fields: Journalism, Media, Culture, Information & Communication Technologies, Cultural Heritage, Gender, Literature, Agriculture & Food Security, Energy, Environment & Ecology, Diversity & Inclusion.
  • Dr Kris Rampersad is an international development educator and multimedia journalist in culture, literature, media, youth and gender who utilises conventional and new media modes for formal and informal transmission of knowledge for lifelong learning. She has been working to bridge silos and erode walls between and among sectors and disciplines to connect communities of interests across formal, informal and nonformal environments through research, analyses, and knowledge sharing, training adults and next generations to address development challenges. With a PhD in the humanities, her work spans human and social developmental fields of education, culture, media and the arts, applied to economics and trade, governance and politics, labour and employment, youth, gender mainstreaming, heritage and environment conservation and protection, religious tolerance and migration and adaptation.

  • She has been mapping and analyzing the cross-currents and intersections of media and civil society, culture, gender, youth and development, and the socio-political and cultural impact of the transition from conventional to new media environments and the emerging fields of communications for development. She has been actively engaged by and in international processes to transmit knowledge and train next generations, and private and public sector stakeholders, as well as the civic, media and academic third-plus sectors in diversity, migration, global citizenship, international cooperation, cultural heritage, development of creative industries. She has trained and educated and helped empowerment numerous youth and adults, organisations and institutions and professionals.

  • Dr Kris Rampersad is recipient of a National Gold Medal for the Development of Women/Journalism (2018), National Luminary Award (2015) and other media awards for social and economic commentary (1987), Excellence in Health Journalism from the World Health Organisation/Pan American Health Organisation (1994). Her blog, Demokrissy was named winner of the BBC/UNESCO Communication Initiative for Policy Blogging in New Media (2011) and is considered a resource in developmental, educational, and cultural matters among global think tanks. It feeds into several other international blogging and other new and social media networks.

  • Dr Kris Rampersad has been involved in public education and knowledge transmission for more than three decades. She has functioned in the formal and informal education system, working to bridge the development divide across sectors through some three decades in media and developmental journalism and more than 25 years’ in academia, straddling the formal education system and informal and non-formal environments for lifelong learning in non-traditional ; Over the last fifteen years, she has been working with international intergovernmental organisations, non-governmental and civil society organisations in advancing intersectoral dialogue, multistakeholder engagement and community empowerment. This is aligned to her research interests in the intersection of oral and written traditions in processes of society-formation from migration, cultural conflict, social adjustment and adaptation and the formation of socio-political and economic institutions that led to her PhD on the subject through the lenses of journalism and literary history.

    She has utilised her experience and knowledge of media to bridge, share and transmit knowledge with the turning tides that has seen the evolution and rise of the third, fourth and fifth sectors in active contestation with the traditional first and second estates. She has worked with both the media sector in its transitioning from the conventional era of print, television and radio into the multimedia realm and virtual media; and civil society entities to consolidate and harness their strengths towards becoming meaningful and relevant counterforces to traditional centres of political and judicial power, corruption in the quest for equity, inclusion, human rights and social justice.

    She has been an avid student and independent researcher, analyst and educator on culture-centred development, examining, critiquing and helping to shaping some of the main international policy and agenda-setting instruments on culture and heritage; journalism, media, information and communication, gender equality, poverty alleviation, intellectual property, environmental protection, among others, anticipating in their implementation through policy development, reform of legislation and regulations, institutional strengthening and education, awareness and human capacity development.


  •  Public Education, Awareness Building, Outreach, Journalism, Communications for Development, Freedom of Expression/Access to Information, ICTs Media/Cyber Rights

    Dr Kris Rampersad is an award-winning independent freelance journalist whose work has spanned over three decades. Her career in journalism spans print/television and multimedia new media forms as well as editing, producing, publishing, media manager, writer, researcher, educator and policy and legislation development in conventional and new/cyber media.

    She functions in several genres from documentary non-fiction to drama, poetry and fiction, and satire and has an easy capacity to ‘translate’ technical and scientific language and concepts into easily digestible forms. She has been a pioneer both in conventional journalism and in the emerging new media field of communications-for-development beyond ‘citizen journalism’ to making ‘journalists’ of professionals in their own fields in the new media arena.

    Her award-winning policy development blog Demokrissy is in its tenth year. Her journalism amalgamates the disciplines of education, outreach, advocacy, facilitation, research, promotion of development dialogues and conversations through conventional and new media and traditional/cultural based-communication oral and literacy methods in physical and virtual arenas. She is recognized for her work in integrating the principles and practices of journalism and conventional media into new media, and has been pivotal in bridging traditional silos and strengthening the reemergence of the ‘third sector’ into the multifarious ‘fourth fifth and sixth estates’ of civil society, academia, media and marginalised counterforces to the first and second estates of governance, legislature and law making. She has pioneered various methods of transferring journalistic functions of investigating, interrogating, educating, informing and entertaining from conventional and new media for many organisations and institutions, championing media rights and freedoms as a voice of the people towards equity, inclusion, intercultural dialogue and social justice that has helped guide global to local level policies, law making, institutional strengthening and socio-cultural development. Her work in media and development has spanned the arenas of conservation of heritage, environment, ecology, diversity, agriculture and food security, civic empowerment, urban and rural development and other spheres of the sustainable development agenda.

    She has taught journalistic principles and practice at formal tertiary levels as well as to the informal/non formal academic and other civic sectors to bridge their abilities to function in the new media environment, conducted workshops, developed media materials, overseer development of websites and produced multimedia content for a variety of new media outlets/websites and institutions and agencies international, regional and local across the UN, Commonwealth and Americas. She developed/edited Research Caribbean, an online news facility for academia.

    She has conceptualized and implemented several awards schemes for journalists and media, including advise and compiled research on the history of journalism and profiles of journalism pioneers for the Awards for Media Excellence for the Trinidad and Tobago Publishers’ Broadcasters Association. She also conceptualized and coordinated the Awards for Agricultural Journalism for the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute; the Fund for Literature, Drama and Film with Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott and the Trinidad Theatre Workshop; and the blueprint of the Media Associations media awards and scholarship fund. She served as a member of the bpTT Luminaries of Journalism Awards Committee. She served as an Independent Member and Vice President to the UNESCO International InterGovernmental Committee adjudicating nominations for the global Intangible Cultural Register and Lists.

    She was Vice Chair of the Commonwealth Journalists’ Association and on the national Media Complaints Council. She was also Chair of the UNESCO Education Commission, Vice President of the UNESCO Executive Board and of the InterGovernmental Committee on Intangible Cultural Heritage. At UNESCO she helped move to consensus resolutions and provision for enhancement of freedom of expression, access to information, rights of journalists to protection from immunity and other initiatives for information and communications technologies and cyber freedoms, security and regulations as well as worked to improve instruments for safeguarding heritage through documentation and transmission through ;

    She holds several awards for excellence in arts, culture, gender and journalism including the National Gold Medal for Development of Women in the sphere of Journalism; awards for social and economic commentary, WHO/PAHO Excellence in Health Journalism. Her blog Demokrissy, widely read by the global think tanks, was named winner of the BBC/UNESCO Communication Initiative for Development Policy Blogging in New Media. Her ‘Making Journalists from Agriculturalists’ blog, was a central feature of the Centre for Cooperation in Agriculture’s International Seminar on Media and Agriculture.


  • Dr Kris Rampersad has been devoted to leveling the playing field for women and girls in pursuit of:

    •Gender equality in the workplace

    • The elimination of all forms of discrimination against women by the promotion of gender equity.

    • Legislative and cultural reform to ensure gender equity.

    • Institutional mechanisms for the advancements of women.

    • Economic empowerment by overcoming marginalization, oppressive social norms access and rights to resources;

    • Incentive and awards based initiatives encouraging women to fulfill their potential and

    • Education- based programs, initiatives or personal action that offer and afford women broader choices & enhanced opportunities

    She has been a spokesperson and voice for gender equity and parity for women for some three decades at national and more than 15 years at international levels, building awareness and understanding. She has also worked actively to inject creative gender sensitive approaches to achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and Sustainable Development goals through agenda setting, policy development and decision making, leadership training, and empowerment of individuals and grassroots communities, organisations and individuals to advance efforts for gender parity. She has further been a role model and inspiration and support for women and girls of all ages and in many fields of endeavor as a pioneer and trailblazer in her various spheres of activity.

    Her work has spanned the arenas of Education; Literature, the Arts and Culture; Media Communications and Information; and Gender Equity, Empowerment and Advancement for access to opportunities from grassroots to high level agenda setting international arenas. This has enhanced the impact and ability to envision and advocate for meaningful gender and culture-sensitive approaches to sustainable development in ways that bridge and span gaps between and among fields and disciplines from agriculture, culture, industry, education, governance and ICTs for all ages and across gender divides.

    She functions as an Independent educator, researcher, author, advocate, activist, advisor, mentor, facilitator and consultant.


    Dr Kris Rampersad pioneered Environment reporting in the Caribbean as well as the drive for conservation and biodiversity through covering the environment, ecology, agriculture beats. Her column Environment Friendly emerged in the earliest days of advocacy for plants and planet, Our Common Future, the title of the Bruntland Report on the UN Conference on Environment and Development.

    Linking journalism with the new media and communication for development arena, she conceptualized and coordinated the Agriculture round Table involving journalists in leading the food security agenda through direct interrogation of stakeholders in policy, law making, private and public sector institutions, academia and NGOs. This model of multistakeholder engagement she developed was adopted as the model for the International Seminar on Media and Agriculture by the Centre for Cooperation in Agriculture CTA ACP-EU) in Brussels, where she also led journalists’ interrogation of the global food security agenda as a panelist in the EU Brussels Briefings.  She re-envisioned the publications, journals and news bulletins and releases of the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute and helped develop its websites.

    She has research, written and developed many documentaries on science, environment, ecology, biodiversity, and bioengineering and agriculture

    She has worked to creatively bridge the arts and sciences collaborating with the National Institute for Higher Education Research, Science and Technology to present technical science concepts in programmes. She helped the UNDP prepare reports and policy recommendations for Corporate Social Responsibility and the first Knowledge Fair of World Environment Day.



    Dr Kris Rampersad has been actively involved in inspiring youth through journalism, media, heritage, gender, and literacy and literary appreciation. From her earliest beginnings as a journalist she championed youth issues on the youth and education beat and produced a weekly column, Teenlife to highlight youth concerns, perspectives and achievements. She is a founding member of the international U40 Network involved in development of the creative heritage sector. As Chair of the UNESCO Education Commission she trained and facilitated the youth input into the global education agenda. She also trained and facilitated the first UNESCO expert meeting on Youth and Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Caribbean. She has helped conceptualise and drive youth and other outreach initiatives of the National Institute of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology to make science exciting and artistic, developing media materials, articles and video documentaries on Gen X, Foresighting and implementing and outreach strategies for its annual science festival, SciTecknoFest. She has been a mentor and role model for many youths.

    Her Leaves of Life initiatives are youth-driven and inspires intergenerational respect between youth and elders for the promotion of knowledge, literacy and literary heritage and tourism across the globe, inspired by her book LiTTscapes.



Lecturing/Course Design/Curriculum Development

Lecturer, Journalism & Literature COSTAATT, Trinidad and Tobago

Lecturer, Business Communication - School of Business & Computer Science

Assistant to the Dean, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, UWI, St Augustine

Part Time Lecturer, Dept of Literatures in English, University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago       1995 –

Taught Courses in Literatures in English, Use of English, Literary Criticism, West Indian Oral Traditions and Oral Literature, Post-Colonial

Lecturer, Literature and Caribbean Society, Faculty of Social Sciences, UWI

Tutor, Dept of Literatures in English, UWI, St Augustine 1994-2004




Training in Communications for Development, Train-the-Trainers, Adult Education Programmes & Curriculum Dev/Course Delivery/Assessment/Professional Development) In Media, Communications, Advocacy & Outreach Literature, Culture, Gender

  1. Understanding Media for Professionals & Higher Education Institutions.
  2. Training Modules for Conducting Media Events, Press Conferences.
  3. Business Communications. Writing for Business.
  4. Literature & Caribbean Society. Faculty of Social Sciences, UWI
  5. Conservation & Protection of Caribbean Literary & Documentary Heritage, Oral Traditions and Intangible Cultural Heritage For Indigeneous and other Caribbean Cultural Communities including Mayans, Maroons, Rastafari, Revivalists, and others: St Kitts & Nevis, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, Grenada, Belize. UNESCO.
  6. Discourse/Conversations Between Oral & Literary Heritage (LiTTributes)
  7. Culture-Sensitive, Gender- Sensitive Leadership Training (Caribbean Institute for Women in Leadership)  

viii. Developing Children’s Fiction

  1. Literary Appreciation/Lifelong Learning Programmes of Leaves of Life




Course, Curriculum, Programmes Development in Non-Formal and Informal Arenas

Facilitator Creative and Cultural Industries, Cultural Heritage, Preparation of Nomination Dossiers, Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage

  1. Since 2005: Engagement in developing culture sector through various international processes: Commonwealth Foundation, World Arts Summits, Diversity Conferences
  2. Development/Adaptations of Training Manuals, Course Modules for Safeguarding documentary, literary and other intangible and tangible heritage of the Caribbean/UNESCO/National Institute of Culture & Heritage Belize/ African Caribbean Institute of Jamaica: Worked through UNESCO and Regional-National agencies for heritage training of Caribbean youth, women, tourism officials, planners, policy makers, politicians, academicians, indigeneous communities: Guyana, Jamaica, Belize, Grenada, St Kitts & Nevis, Trinidad and Tobago;
  3. Development of Documentary and other Heritage processes for UNESCO Conventions including Memory of the World & Intangible Cultural Heritage for Documentation and Preservation of Beliefs, Practices, Habits and Traditions.
  4. Facilitated/Trained first Caribbean Seminar on Youth and Heritage;
  5. Trained First Caribbean stakeholders in gender sensitive cultural policy development & in Intangible Cultural Heritage and World Heritage and other UNESCO Conventions. Developed module for regional Heritage Action Plans



Development of Informal learning modules for outreach and engagement in literary and Cultural Heritage, Media and Advocacy and Gender Empowerment for various NGOs & iNGOs including Caribbean Institute for Women in Leadership; National Institute of Higher Education, research, Science & Technology; Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute; Research Research Inc.



Formal/Conventional Media Print Television/Radio/Editor/Media Manager/Scriptwriting/Producer

Editor, Sunday Guardian, Trinidad Publishing Company, Coordination, production and management off flagship edition/related magazines 2000-2003 Editor/Senior Journalist/Investigative Reporter: 1996-2000

Senior Journalist, Daily News Limited 1993-1996

Producer/Director, Script Writer, Researcher, AVM Television 1988-1990

Reporter, Trinidad Publishing Company, 1986-1988


Multimedia Journalism Information & Communication (Career Highlights) :

A pioneer in journalism, communication and outreach strategies and effective implementation and transformation:

Developed academic online journal editorial facility, Research Caribbean and founding editor;

Pioneer of Caribbean environmental journalism and Agricultural Journalism;

Developed analyses and evaluation of governance of state of Freedom of Expression and Access to information by Member States through Summit of Americas

Developed strategies for civil society, multistakeholder engagement and participation for Commonwealth Foundation Commonwealth People’s Forum Commonwealth Heads of Government and Active Democracy Network of Summit of the Americas;

Developed Awards for Agricultural Journalism; Fund for Literature, Drama & Film with Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott; Commonwealth-Caribbean Awards for Women as Agents of Change; Developed model of multisectoral engagement adopted in Brussels for Internal Seminar on Media and Agriculture;

Coordinated Public Sector Stakeholder Interface: First International Petroleum Procurement Conference for First Forum International;

Spearheaded literary appreciation Year of Derek Walcott (2005); Tribute to VS Naipaul (2000) ongoing LiTTributes (literary tributes Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Antigua and Barbuda, UK, Paris)

Coordinated media for Tobago Jazz Festival

Founder of NGO Leaves of Life aimed at harnessing knowledge for sustainable development;

Winner BBC/UNESCO Communications Initiative Policy Blogging Award for New Media;

Winner of Pan American Health Organisation Award for Excellence in Health Reporting   

Winner BWIA/Media Association Award for Excellence in Journalism;

Commonwealth Professional Fellowship for engagement of Commonwealth CSOs;

Nuffield Foundation/Wolfson College mid-career journalism fellowship

ITEC Scholarship to Indian Institute for Mass Communication

Achievements: Pioneer in Environmental Reporting in Caribbean; Pan American Health Organisation Award for Excellence in Health Reporting; BWIA Media Award for Excellence in SocioEconomic Reporting; Indian institute of Mass Communication Award for Excellence in Non Aligned Journalism

Fields of Expertise:

 Lifelong Learning

Ideas in Progress

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