Purnima Mane

Dr. Purnima Mane, a social scientist, whose areas of expertise include international health, gender issues, and AIDS policy and programme development, took over as a vice president of the Population Council and director of its International Programs Division from 1 February 2001. She is based in New York, USA

Dr. Mane was at the Population Council since September 1999 as director of program planning for the International Programs Division, with responsibility for oversight of two large USAID-funded global operations research projects based in Washington, DC - Frontiers in Reproductive Health and Horizons, focusing on HIV/AIDS prevention, care and impact - mitigation - and two programs based in New York - reproductive health, and gender, family, and development. Dr. Mane resided in Washington D.C. till October 2001 when she relocated to New York.

Before joining the Council, Dr. Mane was based in Geneva, Switzerland, serving in various management, supervisory, and research posts at the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) from 1996 to 1999 and the Global Programme on AIDS of the World Health Organization (WHO/GPA) from 1994 to 1995. At UNAIDS, she managed overall program planning and development in the office of the executive director and helped develop a gender strategy for the organization. At WHO/GPA, she was responsible for overall management of studies on the social and behavioural aspects of HIV and AIDS in Asia, Africa, and Central and South America

Earlier, she was a faculty member of the department of medical and psychiatric social work at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India, for 12 years, serving as associate professor from 1987 to 1993.

Dr. Mane received her M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. degrees in social work from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India, and her B.A. in psychology from St. Xavier's College, Mumbai. She also was a postdoctoral Fulbright Fellow from 1991 to 1992 at the School of Hygiene and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA, where she did research on women and AIDS. She has co-authored four books and more than 35 papers on mental health, AIDS prevention, and gender relations, and is a founder-editor of the journal Culture, Health & Sexuality.

Apart from being a distinguished academician, Dr. Mane has been associated with music and theatre since her childhood. During her school days, she, along with her brother Nandu used to sing for the All India Radio. She has performed for television, and acted in several professional, Marathi plays. She played the role of Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar with Nandu as Judas


UNITED NATIONS, New York/Geneva, 19 March 2007 UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) are delighted with the appointment of Ms. Purnima Mane as the new Deputy Executive Director (Programme) of UNFPA. Ms. Mane joins UNFPA from UNAIDS, where she served as Director of Policy, Evidence and Partnership.

UNFPA is proud to welcome Ms. Mane, who has devoted her career to advocating for population and development issues and the right to sexual and reproductive health, said Thoraya Ahmed Obaid, the Executive Director of UNFPA. Ms. Mane pioneered work on gender and AIDS, long before the feminization of HIV/AIDS became apparent. UNFPA and its partners will benefit substantially from her leadership and guidance in the population and development field.     

UNFPA, which promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity, has been a UNAIDS Co-sponsor since the beginning of the Joint Programme in 1996. 

UNFPA is a critical ally in the AIDS response and is a committed Co-sponsor of UNAIDS, said UNAIDS Executive Director, Peter Piot. I have known and worked with Ms. Mane for many years, and I am thrilled that she will now play such a prominent leadership role in reproductive health. We look forward to continuing to work closely with Ms. Mane and UNFPA in the future on the exceptional issue of AIDS.

Ms. Mane joined the World Health Organizations Global Programme on AIDS in 1994, moving to UNAIDS at its inception in 1996, where she provided oversight to the area of behavioural sciences research and gender and AIDS. She also managed the Executive Office.

From 1999 to 2003, she worked at the Population Council in New York, where she later became Vice-President and Director of International Programmes. In 2003, she went on to work for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, where she was Chief Fund Portfolio Director and Director, Asia.

She returned to UNAIDS in 2004 as Director, driving the development of UNAIDS policy, evidence and partnership work serving as a vital member of the Senior Management Team. 

Ms. Mane has a distinguished track record as an international expert on gender and HIV and led the process of developing the HIV Prevention Policy, which was endorsed by the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board in June 2005.

Ms. Mane, who is Indian, holds a doctorate degree from the Tata Institute of Social Studies in Mumbai where she later went on to become Associate Professor. Before joining UNAIDS, Ms. Mane worked for over 13 years in India on public health and gender-related issues.

Ms. Mane has co-authored and edited a number of books and she is a founding editor of the journal, Culture, Health and Sexuality.

UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies and programmes to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect.

UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, brings together the efforts and resources of ten UN system organizations to the global AIDS response. Co-sponsors include UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank. Based in Geneva, the UNAIDS secretariat works on the ground in more than 80 countries worldwide. Visit the UNAIDS Web site at www.unaids.org     











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