About the researcher

Ananya is a doctoral researcher, an educator, problem solver, entrepreneur, lecturer, lawyer, author, and startup advisor with 10+ years of entrepreneurial, academic, and advisory experience. 

In addition to being a doctoral researcher, Ananya is currently a Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Cornwall Business School, Falmouth University. In her role as a lecturer, she is leading the marketing modules at the business school's undergraduate courses and leading the social media and outreach of the school. In her bigger role as an educator, she is collaborating on knowledge exchange projects with industry partners and researching community-based recycling models.  

Before academia, Ananya founded and worked in two startups working with United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in different markets. She also founded and exited Unico Legale, a legal and strategy firm, and ran a philanthropic venture in data-driven business decision-making - both in the Indian market. She has completed working with startups, incubator managers, and the Wadhwani Venture Fastrack (partnered with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) team as a Startup Fellow, to strategize and deliver workshops, coach startups, and help incubators build robust programs. She has published her book on achieving operational excellence for early-stage startups, based on a 6S framework she devised from her knowledge of lean Six Sigma and agile methodologies.  

Ananya has delivered keynote speeches on startup compliance, viability, sustainability, and when to quit at various conferences and continues to train young adults on different relevant issues. 

Research interests

  • Sustainability with a business focus. 
  • Circular Economy 
  • Startup Ecosystem 


PhD abstract

Thesis title

Looking into the correlation between sustainable business models and sector specificity of startup incubators. 


My research has the following main areas. 

Subject Area – My research area is in the field of entrepreneurial support and innovation ecosystem, within the broader purview of business studies coinciding with the startup businesses and looking into the sustainable business models of incubators using a mixed methodology. 

Research Questions – Which is a more sustainable business model for startup incubators – being sector-specific or sector agnostic? How do we measure their efficiency?  

Aim – The research aim is to identify the effective approach to run a startup incubator. It will be a comparative study of business models of startup incubators that focus on specific sectors and those which do not. For theoretical basis, I will explore either the Institutional Theory or Stakeholder Theory and use it along with the Resource Based View model. The reason for using a theory and the resource-based view is to look at the incubators from an internal perspective, but also to see how external elements effect their efficiency.

Objective – The research technique will involve creating a list of experts in the field of incubators and receiving information from them to create a list of important resources for a sustainable business model of an incubator. Based on the list of resources, participatory research shall be conducted amongst the participant incubators from within the UK to collect data relevant for the study spanning across 2019-2024, five financial years. The data collected, both qualitative and quantitative, shall be analysed to answer the research questions. 


Year Qualification Awarding body
2023 Postgraduate Certification in Higher Education  Falmouth University
2022 MSc. (Entrepreneurship) with Launchpad - Distinction  Falmouth University
2021 MicroMasters in Business Management  Indian Institute of Management Bangalore 
2016 BALLB(Hons) - Double Graduation in Arts and Law with Honours – 1st Class  Calcutta University 
2016 Diploma in Entrepreneurship Administration and Business Laws  West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences 


Honours & awards

Year Description
2004 Winner of National Merit Scholarship in India for 47th Rank in 10th Standard in the State. 

Areas of expertise

  • Marketing and Consumer Behaviour 
  • Entrepreneurship and Entrepreneurial Ecosystem 
  • Sustainability in Business – With a focus to sustainable development goals 


  • Book – 6S for Startups – An operational excellence framework for startups. 
  • Working on outreach and marketing for the business school. 
  • Organised the first ever summer show for the business school in 2022-23. 
  • Leading knowledge exchange project – A Year in Review Conference – 2024. 

Committee membership

Co-chair – Cornwall Business School Events Committee 

Professional engagements

  • Lecturer – Cornwall Business School, Falmouth University 
  • External Panel Member for Degree Revalidation – University of West England, 2023. 
  • Member of the Board of Advisors – Startup Cornwall, Tech Cornwall, 2023. 

Grants & awards

Year Description Awarding body
2021-2022 Stipend and Course Fee Award as full scholarship  European Union Regional Development Fund 
2004-2006 Received National Merit Scholarship for Excellence in 10th Standard Board Exam  Government of India