Dr. Malvika Iyer is an Award-winning Disability Rights Activist with a Doctorate in Social Work. She is the recipient of the "Nari Shakti Puraskar", the Highest Civilian Honor for Women from the President of India.
Iyer is an International Motivational Speaker, a TEDx Speaker, a member of the United Nations Inter Agency Network on Youth Development's Working Group on Youth and Gender Equality, a Model for Accessible Fashion and a Global Shaper at the Global Shapers Community (an initiative of the World Economic Forum).
She is an Advocate for Inclusion and Gender. Through her motivational talks and sensitization workshops in schools, colleges, private establishments, NGOs and youth forums, Iyer has tried to raise awareness about the need for universal design, accessible public spaces and participation of disabled youth in promoting inclusive elections. She has also worked towards creating awareness on a positive body image.
Her work has been recognized widely, including an honor from the President of India- Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, a standing ovation for her motivational speech at the United Nations, and the 'Women In The World' Emerging Leader Award in New York. She Co-Chaired the World Economic Forum India Economic Summit 2017. She has been the subject of numerous newspaper articles and books, even finding a place among the 100 Change Agents and Newsmakers of the Decade.
Iyer was 13 years old when she survived a bomb blast in Bikaner, Rajasthan. She lost both her hands and severely damaged both her legs with nerve paralysis and hypoesthesia.
She studied Economics at St. Stephen's College, Delhi followed by a Master's in Social Work at the Delhi School of Social Work. She did her M.Phil and Ph.D. in Social Work at the Madras School of Social Work.