Dr. Durgesh Man Singh, an economist, scholar and a diplomat

One of the most prominent economist and scholar in Nepal, Dr. Durgesh Man Singh has a strong academic as well as diplomatic background following him.

In the year 1966, he graduated with a distinction as a Bachelors of Arts from Tribhuvan University and was the topper of the batch that year. He then, enrolled in the Delhi School of Economics for a Masters degree in 1968 and his performance on the first year of study earned him a merit scholarship. He was taught by some of the best contemporary academicians and scholars like Amartya Sen, the world renowned economist and Nobel laureate, at the Delhi School of Economics for two years. His other professors included Jagdish Bhagwati and Manmohan Singh, India’s present (2012) Prime Minister. He completed his PhD degree in Economics from the University of Florida in the year 1984. ‘Macro Econometric Model for Small Open Economy- Nepal’, his dissertation for the degree was a seminal work as it was the first macro-econometric model ever developed for Nepal.

Dr Singh began his career in development sector after he returned from the US. He served as a Senior Economist and Training Chief on Development Planning at the Center for Economic Development and Administration (CEDA) and also as the Senior Economist at the Agricultural Projects Services Center (APROSC). He was also appointed as an advisor to the National Planning Commission for three years and after that he became a member of the National Planning Commission and served as the in charge of economic analysis for over five years. He led numerous delegations to different countries while he was at the Planning Commission, which marked the beginning of his career in diplomacy. His grandfather, Sardar Gunja Man Singh was a highly influential figure in Nepal’s diplomatic tie with numerous countries and he had followed the legacy of his grandfather.

He served as a member of the Official Summit Delegation to the SAARC Summit in Islamabad in the year 1989 and in the year 1991, he went as a member of the Prime Minister’s delegation to Male. He was appointed as the first resident Royal Nepalese Ambassador and Head of the Nepalese Mission to the European Union in Brussels in 1992 where he followed the achievements of his grandfather by formulating the agreement for cooperation between the Nepali government and the European Union. It was then, that he realized the importance of conserving heritage and also the interaction between the tourists and the locals. Using all his past experiences, he is trying to help bridge the gap between the tourist and the locals and has devised a concept where tourists would be encouraged to visit not just the large palaces but also the local neighborhoods.

Dr. Durgesh Man Singh believes in showcasing the tourists the actual way of living of the people in the past rather than just showing around the old palaces. The economist and scholar as well as the diplomat has involved himself in bridging the gap between the tourist and the locals and also increasing tourism by showing people the traditional and cultural practices rather than just the architectural heritages.