Manipadma Jena

An independent journalist and photographer covering international environmental issues, I am a regular contributor to international newswires London-headquartered Thomson Reuters Foundation and Rome-headquartered IPS – Inter Press Service, since 2009.

My writing focuses on climate change, sustainability and related issues of energy, gender, migration and conflict, water, biodiversity and land rights.

My work has been featured in publications across countries – in The New York Times (US), The Guardian (UK), China Dialogue, Al Jazeera, Reuters wire for US, Africa and India, Inter Press Service, SciDev.Net-South Asia, The Third Pole and several other news networks.

I have covered international environmental and global goals conferences including several UN Conference of Parties in  Sweden, Turkey, Greece, China, South Korea, East Africa, Malaysia, Thailand, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and in India.

While my reporting weaves local into global issues and often finds resonance with readers across regions, going after stories of inequity, deprivation, corruption, human rights violation and being able to give people at the receiving end a face and a voice, is what drives my work. It is best put in my 2016 Best Pro-People Environmental Reporting State Award: ‘In appreciation of your hard work and dedication for keeping alive the dream for a fairer world’.

Since 2008, even while climate change was being hotly debated, I’ve been on the move, traveling across India to communities in remote regions, many without roads and where only a few journalists venture, to investigate the effects of increasingly erratic rainfall and warmer weather.

In 2012, my IPS report on climate-smart heirloom seeds conserved by indigenous ‘seed-mothers’ won the Asia-Pacific Adaptation Network (APAN) international award for best climate change story.

Member of international and national professional media groups.

Authored ‘Folk Tales from the Hills and Fields of Orissa’ – a rare collection of fables and folk narratives related to environment and nature held in the rapidly dying oral literature among Indian indigenous communities, published by India’s Ministry of Culture.

UPDATE: IPS is pleased to name Manipadma Jena as the Star of the Month