Talanoa Consulting

our team

when we talanoa...

We listen. We don’t assume that we know. We listen to better understand your needs. We listen and build on your ideas for solutions.

We care. We’re idealistic and realistic – and we believe you can be both. We work on problems that we have the expertise to help solve. We don’t assume that we’re the right people and will always recommend others.

We reflect. We look back and learn from our past. We don’t reinvent the wheel. Many solutions already exist and can be refined and adapted to help solve today’s problems.

We question respectfully. Asking why can be powerful in understanding the root causes of an issue. But there are different ways of asking why. We hope we know when not to ask.

We translate. We try not to use development jargon that can alienate the very people development should empower.

our team

marita manley

marita manley

PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT

A resource economist by background, Marita has worked across agriculture and forestry policy, food security, climate resilience, enterprise development, agribusiness research and sustainable tourism for over 15 years.

In addition to her management council roles with Duavata Sustainable Tourism Collective and leading conservation NGO NatureFiji-MareqetiViti, Marita is founder of Talanoa Treks, a social enterprise.

Photo of Sangeeta Mangubhai

Sangeeta Mangubhai

Principal consultant & Research Scientist

Sangeeta has a PhD in coral reef ecology with 26 years experience working on environmental issues. Originally from Fiji, she has worked in Australia, East Africa, Indonesia and the South Pacific on natural resource management, coastal fisheries, "blue foods", payment for ecosystem services, value chains, gender, protected areas, environmental policy, disaster and climate change.

Sangeeta is an editor for the journal Pacific Conservation Biology and SPC's Women in Fisheries Information Bulletin. She has authored over 200 publications including 100 journal articles on a diversity of topics. Sangeeta is a 2018 Pew Fellow working on mainstreaming gender and human rights-based approaches into coastal fisheries in Melanesia.

Photograph of a consultant

Merewalesi Nailatikau

PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT

Merewalesi holds masters' degrees in both Public Policy and Development Studies. With over 15 years of experience in the Pacific region, she has contributed to research, policy analysis, public diplomacy, and strategic communication across various sectors including governance, civil society, donor agencies, and education.

Mere founded Bellatrix Consulting, specializing in storytelling and creative collaborations with indigenous Pacific artists. Her writing has been featured in publications such as the Commonwealth Writers Blog, Climate Tracker, Islands Business, DevPolicy, and the Lowy Interpreter. Additionally, she co-produces Oceanic Refractions, an immersive sound art installation centering indigenous perspectives on kinship, care, and self-determination amidst the climate crisis.

pritika kumari seruvatu

FINANCE MANAGER AND CONTRACTS COORDINATOR

A seasoned finance and administration professional with over 14 years of experience working in progressively more responsible roles, Pritika is a proud Fijian of Indian descent. She has a proven track record of developing and implementing robust internal controls, financial guidelines, and operational procedures that streamline accounting and administrative functions, leading to improved efficiency and accuracy.

She has a Masters in Professional Accounting and has extensive knowledge and experience in managing financial operations and coordinating contracts. Pritika is passionate about working towards a resilient Pacific and has proven experience working in the non-profit, international development, and MSME sectors.

Mereoni Chung

CONSULTANT

Mereoni has over 12 years of experience working with Pacific CSOs and the international development sector, supporting program formulation, implementation and review. Her educational and professional experience is focused on gender, development, policy and Pacific Island issues, with specific research experience in political ecology, and human rights analysis and advocacy.

She has an academic background in social sciences, development, gender studies, and environmental management. Mereoni holds a Masters in Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development, and is an avid ocean va’a paddler.

Ritesh Chand

Analyst

Ritesh has a Masters in Tourism and Hospitality Management from USP. His thesis focused on investigating the triple-bottom impacts of selected tourism social enterprises in Fiji and aligning them with the SDGs, drawing insightful implications at both the micro and macro levels. He also holds an honours Postgraduate Diploma in Commerce (Tourism & Hospitality Management) and a Bachelor of Commerce in Hotel Management from USP.

Ritesh has a strong interest in public policy, research, management, and planning related to tourism. He is enjoying venturing into the domains of agribusiness, GEDSI, and social enterprise operations. He is also motivated to learn more about resilience and adaptation, with a particular focus on safeguarding ecosystems and people from the effects of climate change.

Nehal Chand

Finance and Admin Officer

With an educational background in Accounting and Finance, Nehal is currently pursuing her Post-Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting.

She is a passionate accounting and finance professional with non-profit experience. Dedicated to continuous learning and achieving true proficiency, she is skilled in cash management, financial literacy, bookkeeping, data entry and data analysis whilst possessing strong liaison skills and collaborating effectively with stakeholders.

Nehal is also very passionate about diving deeper into financial literacy and providing assistance to those who need it the most.

matthew capper

LEAD CONSULTANT & BUSINESS MANAGER

Matt has over 15 years policy development experience, working within government, with NGOs, and regionally in the Pacific. Holding a Masters in human rights, he has a background in migration issues and worked on regional immigration policy with the Pacific Immigration Development Community (PIDC). He has led projects on migration, tourism, SME business development, and supported various evaluations.

Matt has also been managing Talanoa Treks, our sister social enterprise, for 5 years, working in partnership with remote communities in Fiji to create a unique multi-day trekking experience. This venture has provided a wealth of experience in community consultation and enterprise development, tourism product development, and the many challenges that come with this.

Talanoa Treks Team

Community engagement

Our team within our sister company, Talanoa Treks, are not only expert trip leaders and guides, but are also very experienced in community engagement and facilitation.

Ben Semira has a background in community enterprise, and Jake Taoi is an experienced conservation officer having worked for our partner NatureFiji-MareqetiViti for a number of years.

and beyond

We work closely with a number of consultants across the Pacific, both individuals and firms, that we regularly sub-contract, and have a wider network of professionals that we connect with on a project-specific basis. We actively seek to support the growth of the local consultancy sector and welcome opportunities to collaborate with experts in the Pacific and beyond.