Dr. Brij Kothari

President and Co-Founder of PlanetRead


Brij Kothari and his team have innovated, researched, and nationally implemented Same Language Subtitling (SLS) on TV for mass literacy.  SLS on Bollywood film songs is known to deliver reading practice to 200 million early-readers in India.  Bill Clinton called it “a small change that has a staggering impact on people’s lives.”  The SLS innovation was featured at the Clinton Global Initiative in 2009 and 2011 and the World Economic Forum, Davos, 2011.

Brij is a Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year (2009), an Ashoka Fellow and on the faculty of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.  He founded PlanetRead, a non-profit, and BookBox, a for-profit, as a Reuters Digital Vision Fellow at Stanford University.  His research publications have primarily focused on literacy, primary education and indigenous knowledge.  He is also a columnist on social innovation and entrepreneurship.

Brij’s SLS work is the recipient of awards from the Tech Museum of Innovation (San Jose), the Institute for Social Inventions (London), Development Marketplace (World Bank) and the NASSOM Social Innovation Honor.

Brij grew up in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry.  He has a Ph.D. in Education and a Master’s in Development Communication from Cornell University, and a Master’s in Physics from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur.