As a researcher, documentary filmmaker and community manager, I have served a range of diverse communities across Asia-Pacific, and internationally for over a decade. The broader areas of my work include access to information and knowledge, Openness and rights (both digital and human).


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Most of my professional journey – in building strategy, grantmaking, designing and implementing high-impact catalyst programs – has been with nonprofits like Wikimedia Foundation, Centre for Internet and Society Mozilla, Internet Society. I have worked closely and have designed programs for civil society, academica, industry and public sectors to further the open internet, more specifically, internet governance, open culture and open source/FLOSS, and digital rights.

During 2019–2020, I was the Digital Identity Fellow at Yoti to lead project #MarginalizedAadhaar, and I researched the marginalization in India biometric ID Aadhaar and made a documentary film. Much before that in 2017, I produced documentaries on three endangered languages from South Asia as a National Geographic Explorer. During 2013–2015, I produced two web Open Education Resources (OER) series for Hindi Wikipedia and the Kannada Wikipedia.

I was one of the under-30 MJ Bear Fellows in 2017 and was also a part of the Mozilla Open Leadership in Round 4. As an early social entrepreneur, I founded OpenSpeaks to build frameworks and resources for documenting endangered and indigenous languages, and co-founded the O Foundation, an organization that works in the intersections of Openness, technology and rights.

For a large part of my adult life, I have volunteered for the development and growth of Indian-language Wikipedias and its sister projects that are known as Wikimedia projects, and have advocated for the adoption of open culture and open source philosophy including the Creative Commons Licenses. I am one of the founding members of the Creative Commons India Chapter (established under the aegis of Creative Commons Global Network – CCGN – in 2018. My other volunteering and advisory roles are in initiatives including Global Voices (mostly in Rising Voices and Advox), Mozilla, Wikitongues, ScholarlyHub and Digital Language Diversity Project (DLDP).

  • Panigrahi, Subhashish: Rising Voices. Indigenous Language Digital Activism. In: Nishant Shah, Puthiya Purayil Sneha, Sumandro Chattapadhyay (Hg.): Digital Activism in Asia Reader. Lüneburg: meson press 2015, S. 155–158. DOI:
  • “Can Openness and open standards help revitalise marginalised languages?”. Youth Knowledge Books. Council of Europe (currently in press)

Op-eds and other pieces