Research Projects

The proposed IIHS IOE Research Programme breaks away from disciplinary boundaries, and emphasises interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral approaches, while also furthering synergies between research and practice. This approach is evident in the past and ongoing projects detailed below. These projects are aligned with the proposed Schools at the proposed IIHS IOE, showing the diversity as well as interconnection among them. The projects cover a range of urban issues spanning climate change, economic development, human development, infrastructure systems, policy and governance. They cross scales from local to regional, national and global, as well as sectors and domains of urban practice. Current projects at IIHS are listed below. Past projects are available here.

School of Environment and Sustainability

GCRF Project (PEAK Consortium)

The United Kingdom’s strategy of Official Development Assistance (ODA) acknowledges that the grand global challenges require new knowledge systems built on transformative and interdisciplinary work. Shifting focus from prioritising country issues, the UK’s ODA is funding universities and research organisations to do disciplinary and interdisciplinary challenge-led research. The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a GBP 1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government in late 2015. It has been specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries and has funded eight international consortia to identify key challenges of the future.

 

 

IIHS is part of one of eight consortia of global elite institutions that will advance an international understanding of the future city. Winning a quarter of the GBP 1.5 billion grant under the GCRF, IIHS in partnership with the Tsinghua University and the University of Cape Town forms the PEAK consortia which has identified four overarching themes of urban dynamics. The PEAK framework synthesises traditional urban studies disciplines with emergent new urban sciences in a programme of research and capacity building across the humanities, social, sciences and natural sciences. PEAK is grounded in the logic of urban complexity to develop an array of disciplinary perspectives that will address the challenges of the 21st century city. The breadth of PEAK—prediction and projection in the city, Emergence, combination, material cities and complex systems, adopting innovation and metropolitan commensuration, and knowledge exchange and urban co-production—will build the capacities of cities to handle alternative emergent development futures.

 

 

This will inform teaching, ongoing research and practice at IIHS. PEAK will directly build knowledge from and about practice cases from cities of India, South Africa, China and Colombia which are vital to understand how to scale and development interventions for the future city. The grounding of the IIHS curricula is to create knowledge in grounded experiences of complex urban challenges.

CapaCITIES (Migration, Livelihoods and Climate Resilience)

CapaCITIES is an initiative that brings together Swiss and Indian scientific and implementation experience to turn a critical gap in Indian urban capacity to address climate mitigation and adaptation challenges into a development opportunity.

 

In this context, the study being conducted by IIHS focuses on ‘what drives in- and out-migration in the medium-sized cities in India, how is it experienced by migrants, viewed and constructed within policy, and the strategies that could help reconcile the climate resilience agenda with migration dynamics in cities.’

 

 

The study will unpack this by exploring two medium-sized cities in India. Specifically, this study will examine the economic and spatial implications of the migration dynamics, including the constraints imposed by governance, institutional, policy, planning and capacity limits. The analysis will include identification of city-level strategies for managing the migration dynamics, in the context of climate change and climate variability. The overall aim of this project is to locate the identified city-level strategies within the migration-climate resilience-developmental policy landscape, clearly identifying future policy and implementation pathways.

Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR)

IIHS leads one of the largest climate adaptation research programmes in South-Asia. The 5-year (2014–2018) Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR) research programme is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) international climate adaptation research programme (funded by IDRC and DfID).

 

 

IIHS leads the South Asia research group, comprising the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE). We are collectively engaged in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, examining issues of vulnerability and climate adaptation options and strategies. ‘Barriers and Enablers to Effective, Widespread and Sustained Adaptation’ is the meta-framework that defines the core of the ASSAR project. It is expected to lead to the identification of key policy focus while implementing climate adaptation strategies in India. The project provides a comparative framework across Africa and India while thinking about adaptation strategies. Therefore, it recognises the potential of learning from successful strategies in a different context. This project attempts to advance the understanding of constraining and enabling factors that determine successful adaptation.

 

The CARIAA | ASSAR scope included a year-long Regional Diagnostic Studies (RDS) phase and a 4-year long Regional Research Programme (RRP), which encompasses development of climate scenarios, qualitative and quantitative field-based research, and identification of scalable adaptation strategies in conjunction with government stakeholders and local communities.

Energy innovation for low-cost housing in India and South Africa

This project explores how low-income communities, private energy entrepreneurs, and government at various scales, work in contestation and collaboration to devise and deliver affordable domestic energy that meets the long-term needs and aspirations of low-income households in two rapidly urbanising cities, Bengaluru (India) and Cape Town (South Africa). This project is a collaborative initiative between IIHS, Energy Research Centre, University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Cambridge. It is funded within the Cities and Infrastructure Programme of the British Academy.

Massive Open Online Course on Sustainable Cities

Following the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, the SDG Academy was set up by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN) with an objective to support the adoption of these goals. They aimed to bring experts from across the world on various sustainability challenges, and offer comprehensive curriculum to equip sustainable development practitioners to address complex challenges. To achieve this, they engaged IIHS, with its internal capabilities on content development, leveraging its existing global networks, and media production, to develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Sustainable Cities in the context of the SDGs, particularly Goal 11 that aspires to ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’. SDG Academy and IIHS started the 1.5-year partnership for the Sustainable Cities MOOC production on 1 August 2016.

Policy Advisory for Sustainable Housing

The International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group has commissioned IIHS in 2017 to conduct a policy analysis to develop potential policy bundles that could encourage sustainable housing at scale. The policy recommendations are being developed by the IIHS Design Lab in close coordination with the climate change team at IIHS and are supported by analytical evidence, Indian and international reference cases, and implementation protocols for various levels and sectors of government.

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School of Settlements and Infrastructure

GCRF Project (PEAK Consortium)

The United Kingdom’s strategy of Official Development Assistance (ODA) acknowledges that the grand global challenges require new knowledge systems built on transformative and interdisciplinary work. Shifting focus from prioritising country issues, the UK’s ODA is funding universities and research organisations to do disciplinary and interdisciplinary challenge-led research. The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a GBP 1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government in late 2015. It has been specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries and has funded eight international consortia to identify key challenges of the future.

 

 

IIHS is part of one of eight consortia of global elite institutions that will advance an international understanding of the future city. Winning a quarter of the GBP 1.5 billion grant under the GCRF, IIHS in partnership with the Tsinghua University and the University of Cape Town forms the PEAK consortia which has identified four overarching themes of urban dynamics. The PEAK framework synthesises traditional urban studies disciplines with emergent new urban sciences in a programme of research and capacity building across the humanities, social, sciences and natural sciences. PEAK is grounded in the logic of urban complexity to develop an array of disciplinary perspectives that will address the challenges of the 21st century city. The breadth of PEAK—prediction and projection in the city, Emergence, combination, material cities and complex systems, adopting innovation and metropolitan commensuration, and knowledge exchange and urban co-production—will build the capacities of cities to handle alternative emergent development futures.

 

 

This will inform teaching, ongoing research and practice at IIHS. PEAK will directly build knowledge from and about practice cases from cities of India, South Africa, China and Colombia which are vital to understand how to scale and development interventions for the future city. The grounding of the IIHS curricula is to create knowledge in grounded experiences of complex urban challenges.

Tacit Urban Knowledge Network

IIHS is part of a network along with the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi; Hyderabad Urban Labs; and TISS, Mumbai, to study tacit and informal urban knowledge in Indian cities. In this three-year project, IIHS will focus on the study of informal and incrementally built low-income housing in Delhi and Bengaluru; as well as on small-scale affordable rental housing.

Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR)

IIHS leads one of the largest climate adaptation research programmes in South-Asia. The 5-year (2014–2018) Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR) research programme is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) international climate adaptation research programme (funded by IDRC and DfID).

 

 

IIHS leads the South Asia research group, comprising the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE). We are collectively engaged in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, examining issues of vulnerability and climate adaptation options and strategies. ‘Barriers and Enablers to Effective, Widespread and Sustained Adaptation’ is the meta-framework that defines the core of the ASSAR project. It is expected to lead to the identification of key policy focus while implementing climate adaptation strategies in India. The project provides a comparative framework across Africa and India while thinking about adaptation strategies. Therefore, it recognises the potential of learning from successful strategies in a different context. This project attempts to advance the understanding of constraining and enabling factors that determine successful adaptation.

 

The CARIAA | ASSAR scope included a year-long Regional Diagnostic Studies (RDS) phase and a 4-year long Regional Research Programme (RRP), which encompasses development of climate scenarios, qualitative and quantitative field-based research, and identification of scalable adaptation strategies in conjunction with government stakeholders and local communities.

Energy innovation for low-cost housing in India and South Africa

This project explores how low-income communities, private energy entrepreneurs, and government at various scales, work in contestation and collaboration to devise and deliver affordable domestic energy that meets the long-term needs and aspirations of low-income households in two rapidly urbanising cities, Bengaluru (India) and Cape Town (South Africa). This project is a collaborative initiative between IIHS, Energy Research Centre, University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Cambridge. It is funded within the Cities and Infrastructure Programme of the British Academy.

Planning, 'Violations' and Urban Inclusion

In November 2015, the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) in collaboration with Youth for Unity and Voluntary Action (YUVA) conducted a two-day training workshop on ‘Urban Planning’ for organisations and activists working on housing rights. While the workshop provided an overview of urban planning in India, more in-depth work was needed to engage with the linkages between planning, housing, violations and evictions. There was a felt need to understand ongoing planning mechanisms and ways in which communities could engage in making planning a people-centric process.

This led to the commissioning of a research project by YUVA to IIHS, with the objective to understand the nature, kind and quantum of violations in Indian cities with respect to their master plans. This was done through a literature review and in-depth study of two cities—Ranchi and Bhubaneswar.

 

The output is a set of three reports:

  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Review of Literature
  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Study of Ranchi
  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Study of Bhubaneswar

 

 

These reports have been published in English and Hindi.

Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme

The Government of Tamil Nadu (GoTN) was the first Indian state to issue the Operative Guidelines for Septage Management in September 2014. In addition to its investment in conventional underground drainage and sewage treatment plants, the State prioritised the strengthening of Fecal Sludge and Septage Management as an economical and sustainable solution for small and medium towns, and as a supplement to network-based sewerage systems in bigger cities. To help achieve Tamil Nadu’s Sanitation Mission (Muzhu Sugathara Tamizhagam), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is supporting the GoTN by setting up a Technical Support Unit within the Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department.

 

 

The Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme (TNUSSP)—a consortium of organisations led by IIHS—aims at effecting improvements along the entire urban sanitation value chain in the State of Tamil Nadu, and demonstrating innovations in two model urban locations.

Massive Open Online Course on Sustainable Cities

Following the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, the SDG Academy was set up by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN) with an objective to support the adoption of these goals. They aimed to bring experts from across the world on various sustainability challenges, and offer comprehensive curriculum to equip sustainable development practitioners to address complex challenges. To achieve this, they engaged IIHS, with its internal capabilities on content development, leveraging its existing global networks, and media production, to develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Sustainable Cities in the context of the SDGs, particularly Goal 11 that aspires to ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’. SDG Academy and IIHS started the 1.5-year partnership for the Sustainable Cities MOOC production on 1 August 2016.

‘Residential REITs’ for Rental Housing, Aspects of Capital and Finance

IIHS will develop options to enhance the supply of affordable rental housing in Indian cities, in an efficient and sustainable manner, particularly using REIT as an effective financial mechanism and RMC as an effective management tool. The objectives of the research project are to study and report on the cycle for the supply of organised rental housing for low-income groups on the 2 core themes of capital and finance, including Real Estate Investment Trusts (REIT) and Rental Housing Management, including Rental Management Companies (RMC). The project will assess the feasibility and desirability of taking forward REITs in rental housing market and to develop options for the above, with special focus on viable models for residential REITs and RMCs, and flesh out contextual opportunities and risks with respect to the above.

Design Guidelines for PHCs in Karnataka

The IIHS Design Lab developed design and services infrastructure guidelines for primary healthcare infrastructure in 2015–16 for the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Karnataka through the Karnataka Health Systems Development and Reform Project (KHSDRP). The guidelines document included aspects of sustainable site planning, regional climate responsive strategies, comprehensive set of recommendations and practices for sustainable services such as water supply, sanitation and energy, besides a set of type designs, room details and visual language components for Auxiliary Nurse and Mid-wife (ANM) Sub-centres, Primary Health Centres (PHCs) and Community Health Centres (CHCs) to be developed in the state of Karnataka.

Revamp of the OPD & ED in District Hospitals across Uttar Pradesh

The Uttar Pradesh Health Systems Strengthening Project (UPHSSP), under the Department of Medical Health and Family Welfare, Government of Uttar Pradesh, has recently commissioned the IIHS Design Lab for the design and development of multipronged strategies for the revamping of the Out-patient and Emergency Departments (OPD & ED) in 10 District Hospitals across Uttar Pradesh. The aim of this project is to develop customised strategies and revamp plans which may include changes to patient flow management practices, management processes and policies, including technological solutions with potential to enable these changes based on results of operational modelling and stakeholder consultations.

Policy Advisory for Sustainable Housing

The International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group has commissioned IIHS in 2017 to conduct a policy analysis to develop potential policy bundles that could encourage sustainable housing at scale. The policy recommendations are being developed by the IIHS Design Lab in close coordination with the climate change team at IIHS and are supported by analytical evidence, Indian and international reference cases, and implementation protocols for various levels and sectors of government.

Development Plan for the Tamil Nadu Institute of Urban Studies

TNIUS approached the IIHS Design Lab in September 2016 to help them develop a ten-year master plan for their 3.8-acre campus in Coimbatore and other proposed regional centres. IIHS Design Lab developed a comprehensive area programme, phased master plan, spatial standards and environmental benchmarks for the campus, which were then compiled into a Preliminary Development Plan proposal to the 5th State Finance Commission (SFC) of the Government of Tamil Nadu. TNIUS has obtained approval for a first tranche of funding from the SFC for the development of their Coimbatore Campus.

School of Economic Development

GCRF Project (PEAK Consortium)

The United Kingdom’s strategy of Official Development Assistance (ODA) acknowledges that the grand global challenges require new knowledge systems built on transformative and interdisciplinary work. Shifting focus from prioritising country issues, the UK’s ODA is funding universities and research organisations to do disciplinary and interdisciplinary challenge-led research. The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a GBP 1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government in late 2015. It has been specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries and has funded eight international consortia to identify key challenges of the future.

 

 

IIHS is part of one of eight consortia of global elite institutions that will advance an international understanding of the future city. Winning a quarter of the GBP 1.5 billion grant under the GCRF, IIHS in partnership with the Tsinghua University and the University of Cape Town forms the PEAK consortia which has identified four overarching themes of urban dynamics. The PEAK framework synthesises traditional urban studies disciplines with emergent new urban sciences in a programme of research and capacity building across the humanities, social, sciences and natural sciences. PEAK is grounded in the logic of urban complexity to develop an array of disciplinary perspectives that will address the challenges of the 21st century city. The breadth of PEAK—prediction and projection in the city, Emergence, combination, material cities and complex systems, adopting innovation and metropolitan commensuration, and knowledge exchange and urban co-production—will build the capacities of cities to handle alternative emergent development futures.

 

 

This will inform teaching, ongoing research and practice at IIHS. PEAK will directly build knowledge from and about practice cases from cities of India, South Africa, China and Colombia which are vital to understand how to scale and development interventions for the future city. The grounding of the IIHS curricula is to create knowledge in grounded experiences of complex urban challenges.

GCRF Project (KNOW Consortium)

The KNOW (Knowledge in Action for Urban Equality) project is a collaboration with University College London (UCL) and other academic and community organizations in countries as diverse as Peru, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka and Uganda. This project is funded under The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries. This KNOW collaboration recognizes that cities are inherently unequal places, being home to immense prosperity and extreme poverty. A key challenge in working towards more equal cities is to ensure that different kinds of disparities are recognised and measured, and then to develop locally-led strategies to address them. This collaboration aims to address this challenge by recognizing context-specific problems and identifying context-specific solutions and inform various levels of stakeholders ranging from urban planners to community groups.

Hungry Cities Partnership

IIHS is part of The Hungry Cities Partnership which links Canadian researchers with partner organisations in seven major cities in the South in planning and implementing a five-year, collaborative, interdisciplinary research, training and knowledge mobilisation program on urbanisation, food security, informality and inclusive growth. IIHS as research partner is involved in investigating these inter-connected dynamics in a rapidly urbanising city-scape like Bengaluru.

Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR)

IIHS leads one of the largest climate adaptation research programmes in South-Asia. The 5-year (2014–2018) Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR) research programme is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) international climate adaptation research programme (funded by IDRC and DfID).

 

 

IIHS leads the South Asia research group, comprising the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE). We are collectively engaged in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, examining issues of vulnerability and climate adaptation options and strategies. ‘Barriers and Enablers to Effective, Widespread and Sustained Adaptation’ is the meta-framework that defines the core of the ASSAR project. It is expected to lead to the identification of key policy focus while implementing climate adaptation strategies in India. The project provides a comparative framework across Africa and India while thinking about adaptation strategies. Therefore, it recognises the potential of learning from successful strategies in a different context. This project attempts to advance the understanding of constraining and enabling factors that determine successful adaptation.

 

The CARIAA | ASSAR scope included a year-long Regional Diagnostic Studies (RDS) phase and a 4-year long Regional Research Programme (RRP), which encompasses development of climate scenarios, qualitative and quantitative field-based research, and identification of scalable adaptation strategies in conjunction with government stakeholders and local communities.

Massive Open Online Course on Sustainable Cities

Following the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, the SDG Academy was set up by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN) with an objective to support the adoption of these goals. They aimed to bring experts from across the world on various sustainability challenges, and offer comprehensive curriculum to equip sustainable development practitioners to address complex challenges. To achieve this, they engaged IIHS, with its internal capabilities on content development, leveraging its existing global networks, and media production, to develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Sustainable Cities in the context of the SDGs, particularly Goal 11 that aspires to ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’. SDG Academy and IIHS started the 1.5-year partnership for the Sustainable Cities MOOC production on 1 August 2016.

‘Residential REITs’ for Rental Housing, Aspects of Capital and Finance

IIHS will develop options to enhance the supply of affordable rental housing in Indian cities, in an efficient and sustainable manner, particularly using REIT as an effective financial mechanism and RMC as an effective management tool. The objectives of the research project are to study and report on the cycle for the supply of organised rental housing for low-income groups on the 2 core themes of capital and finance, including Real Estate Investment Trusts (REIT) and Rental Housing Management, including Rental Management Companies (RMC). The project will assess the feasibility and desirability of taking forward REITs in rental housing market and to develop options for the above, with special focus on viable models for residential REITs and RMCs, and flesh out contextual opportunities and risks with respect to the above.

School of Human Development

GCRF Project (PEAK Consortium)

The United Kingdom’s strategy of Official Development Assistance (ODA) acknowledges that the grand global challenges require new knowledge systems built on transformative and interdisciplinary work. Shifting focus from prioritising country issues, the UK’s ODA is funding universities and research organisations to do disciplinary and interdisciplinary challenge-led research. The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a GBP 1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government in late 2015. It has been specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries and has funded eight international consortia to identify key challenges of the future.

 

 

IIHS is part of one of eight consortia of global elite institutions that will advance an international understanding of the future city. Winning a quarter of the GBP 1.5 billion grant under the GCRF, IIHS in partnership with the Tsinghua University and the University of Cape Town forms the PEAK consortia which has identified four overarching themes of urban dynamics. The PEAK framework synthesises traditional urban studies disciplines with emergent new urban sciences in a programme of research and capacity building across the humanities, social, sciences and natural sciences. PEAK is grounded in the logic of urban complexity to develop an array of disciplinary perspectives that will address the challenges of the 21st century city. The breadth of PEAK—prediction and projection in the city, Emergence, combination, material cities and complex systems, adopting innovation and metropolitan commensuration, and knowledge exchange and urban co-production—will build the capacities of cities to handle alternative emergent development futures.

 

 

This will inform teaching, ongoing research and practice at IIHS. PEAK will directly build knowledge from and about practice cases from cities of India, South Africa, China and Colombia which are vital to understand how to scale and development interventions for the future city. The grounding of the IIHS curricula is to create knowledge in grounded experiences of complex urban challenges.

Tacit Urban Knowledge Network

IIHS is part of a network along with the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi; Hyderabad Urban Labs; and TISS, Mumbai, to study tacit and informal urban knowledge in Indian cities. In this three-year project, IIHS will focus on the study of informal and incrementally built low-income housing in Delhi and Bengaluru; as well as on small-scale affordable rental housing.

Hungry Cities Partnership

IIHS is part of The Hungry Cities Partnership which links Canadian researchers with partner organisations in seven major cities in the South in planning and implementing a five-year, collaborative, interdisciplinary research, training and knowledge mobilisation program on urbanisation, food security, informality and inclusive growth. IIHS as research partner is involved in investigating these inter-connected dynamics in a rapidly urbanising city-scape like Bengaluru.

WHO Study on Child Care Practices of Women Working in the Informal Sector

IIHS is a co-investigator in a study entitled ‘Child Care Practices of Women Working in the Informal Sector’. This was a formative study (2016–17) that was done with the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa, with field assistance from Asiye eTafuleni, Durban, WIEGO (Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing), with technical oversight by the World Health Organisation. The formative study has led to possible interventions that will be further researched and piloted in a follow-up study phase from 2018–19 in relevant study sites.

 

 

This investigation stems from the fact that informal employment unquestionably remains a dominant form of work for most urban Indians, and continues to be associated with precariousness. Despite the magnitude of this population, little is known about health care practices and knowledge among workers in the informal sector, and especially regarding child-care practices. Thus, this study explores how women working with precarious quality of employment such as those described above, in addition to economic vulnerability that makes other meaningful employment choices impossible, navigate the need and choice to work with the requirements of breastfeeding and child care. The comparative aspect of this study, between India and South Africa, aims to determine the effect of informal working conditions on health choices and behaviour for women.

 

 

The investigation into the relationship between the work environment and child care was done through a qualitative survey and focus group discussions. The qualitative survey was conducted with over 90 women in four sectors of work to assess women’s simultaneous management of their productive and reproductive roles. The Indian study was conducted in select neighbourhoods with North and East Delhi (Jahangirpuri, Raghubir Nagar, Anand Vihar, and Sundarnagari) with the field assistance from the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA). Women in these settlements were engaged in fruit and vegetable vending, traditional pheri work, domestic work and home-based work.

CapaCITIES (Migration, Livelihoods and Climate Resilience)

CapaCITIES is an initiative that brings together Swiss and Indian scientific and implementation experience to turn a critical gap in Indian urban capacity to address climate mitigation and adaptation challenges into a development opportunity.

 

In this context, the study being conducted by IIHS focuses on ‘what drives in- and out-migration in the medium-sized cities in India, how is it experienced by migrants, viewed and constructed within policy, and the strategies that could help reconcile the climate resilience agenda with migration dynamics in cities.’

 

 

The study will unpack this by exploring two medium-sized cities in India. Specifically, this study will examine the economic and spatial implications of the migration dynamics, including the constraints imposed by governance, institutional, policy, planning and capacity limits. The analysis will include identification of city-level strategies for managing the migration dynamics, in the context of climate change and climate variability. The overall aim of this project is to locate the identified city-level strategies within the migration-climate resilience-developmental policy landscape, clearly identifying future policy and implementation pathways.

Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR)

IIHS leads one of the largest climate adaptation research programmes in South-Asia. The 5-year (2014–2018) Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR) research programme is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) international climate adaptation research programme (funded by IDRC and DfID).

 

 

IIHS leads the South Asia research group, comprising the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE). We are collectively engaged in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, examining issues of vulnerability and climate adaptation options and strategies. ‘Barriers and Enablers to Effective, Widespread and Sustained Adaptation’ is the meta-framework that defines the core of the ASSAR project. It is expected to lead to the identification of key policy focus while implementing climate adaptation strategies in India. The project provides a comparative framework across Africa and India while thinking about adaptation strategies. Therefore, it recognises the potential of learning from successful strategies in a different context. This project attempts to advance the understanding of constraining and enabling factors that determine successful adaptation.

 

The CARIAA | ASSAR scope included a year-long Regional Diagnostic Studies (RDS) phase and a 4-year long Regional Research Programme (RRP), which encompasses development of climate scenarios, qualitative and quantitative field-based research, and identification of scalable adaptation strategies in conjunction with government stakeholders and local communities.

Energy innovation for low-cost housing in India and South Africa

This project explores how low-income communities, private energy entrepreneurs, and government at various scales, work in contestation and collaboration to devise and deliver affordable domestic energy that meets the long-term needs and aspirations of low-income households in two rapidly urbanising cities, Bengaluru (India) and Cape Town (South Africa). This project is a collaborative initiative between IIHS, Energy Research Centre, University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Cambridge. It is funded within the Cities and Infrastructure Programme of the British Academy.

Planning, 'Violations' and Urban Inclusion

In November 2015, the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) in collaboration with Youth for Unity and Voluntary Action (YUVA) conducted a two-day training workshop on ‘Urban Planning’ for organisations and activists working on housing rights. While the workshop provided an overview of urban planning in India, more in-depth work was needed to engage with the linkages between planning, housing, violations and evictions. There was a felt need to understand ongoing planning mechanisms and ways in which communities could engage in making planning a people-centric process.

This led to the commissioning of a research project by YUVA to IIHS, with the objective to understand the nature, kind and quantum of violations in Indian cities with respect to their master plans. This was done through a literature review and in-depth study of two cities—Ranchi and Bhubaneswar.

 

The output is a set of three reports:

  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Review of Literature
  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Study of Ranchi
  • Planning, ‘Violations’, and Urban Inclusion: A Study of Bhubaneswar

 

 

These reports have been published in English and Hindi.

Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme

The Government of Tamil Nadu (GoTN) was the first Indian state to issue the Operative Guidelines for Septage Management in September 2014. In addition to its investment in conventional underground drainage and sewage treatment plants, the State prioritised the strengthening of Fecal Sludge and Septage Management as an economical and sustainable solution for small and medium towns, and as a supplement to network-based sewerage systems in bigger cities. To help achieve Tamil Nadu’s Sanitation Mission (Muzhu Sugathara Tamizhagam), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is supporting the GoTN by setting up a Technical Support Unit within the Municipal Administration and Water Supply Department.

 

 

The Tamil Nadu Urban Sanitation Support Programme (TNUSSP)—a consortium of organisations led by IIHS—aims at effecting improvements along the entire urban sanitation value chain in the State of Tamil Nadu, and demonstrating innovations in two model urban locations.

Massive Open Online Course on Sustainable Cities

Following the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, the SDG Academy was set up by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN) with an objective to support the adoption of these goals. They aimed to bring experts from across the world on various sustainability challenges, and offer comprehensive curriculum to equip sustainable development practitioners to address complex challenges. To achieve this, they engaged IIHS, with its internal capabilities on content development, leveraging its existing global networks, and media production, to develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Sustainable Cities in the context of the SDGs, particularly Goal 11 that aspires to ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’. SDG Academy and IIHS started the 1.5-year partnership for the Sustainable Cities MOOC production on 1 August 2016.

Design Guidelines for PHCs in Karnataka

The IIHS Design Lab developed design and services infrastructure guidelines for primary healthcare infrastructure in 2015–16 for the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Karnataka through the Karnataka Health Systems Development and Reform Project (KHSDRP). The guidelines document included aspects of sustainable site planning, regional climate responsive strategies, comprehensive set of recommendations and practices for sustainable services such as water supply, sanitation and energy, besides a set of type designs, room details and visual language components for Auxiliary Nurse and Mid-wife (ANM) Sub-centres, Primary Health Centres (PHCs) and Community Health Centres (CHCs) to be developed in the state of Karnataka.

Revamp of the OPD & ED in District Hospitals across Uttar Pradesh

The Uttar Pradesh Health Systems Strengthening Project (UPHSSP), under the Department of Medical Health and Family Welfare, Government of Uttar Pradesh, has recently commissioned the IIHS Design Lab for the design and development of multipronged strategies for the revamping of the Out-patient and Emergency Departments (OPD & ED) in 10 District Hospitals across Uttar Pradesh. The aim of this project is to develop customised strategies and revamp plans which may include changes to patient flow management practices, management processes and policies, including technological solutions with potential to enable these changes based on results of operational modelling and stakeholder consultations.

School of Governance

GCRF Project (PEAK Consortium)

The United Kingdom’s strategy of Official Development Assistance (ODA) acknowledges that the grand global challenges require new knowledge systems built on transformative and interdisciplinary work. Shifting focus from prioritising country issues, the UK’s ODA is funding universities and research organisations to do disciplinary and interdisciplinary challenge-led research. The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a GBP 1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government in late 2015. It has been specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries and has funded eight international consortia to identify key challenges of the future.

 

 

IIHS is part of one of eight consortia of global elite institutions that will advance an international understanding of the future city. Winning a quarter of the GBP 1.5 billion grant under the GCRF, IIHS in partnership with the Tsinghua University and the University of Cape Town forms the PEAK consortia which has identified four overarching themes of urban dynamics. The PEAK framework synthesises traditional urban studies disciplines with emergent new urban sciences in a programme of research and capacity building across the humanities, social, sciences and natural sciences. PEAK is grounded in the logic of urban complexity to develop an array of disciplinary perspectives that will address the challenges of the 21st century city. The breadth of PEAK—prediction and projection in the city, Emergence, combination, material cities and complex systems, adopting innovation and metropolitan commensuration, and knowledge exchange and urban co-production—will build the capacities of cities to handle alternative emergent development futures.

 

 

This will inform teaching, ongoing research and practice at IIHS. PEAK will directly build knowledge from and about practice cases from cities of India, South Africa, China and Colombia which are vital to understand how to scale and development interventions for the future city. The grounding of the IIHS curricula is to create knowledge in grounded experiences of complex urban challenges.

GCRF Project (KNOW Consortium)

The KNOW (Knowledge in Action for Urban Equality) project is a collaboration with University College London (UCL) and other academic and community organizations in countries as diverse as Peru, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka and Uganda. This project is funded under The Grand Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) specially designed to stimulate research on the challenges faced by developing countries. This KNOW collaboration recognizes that cities are inherently unequal places, being home to immense prosperity and extreme poverty. A key challenge in working towards more equal cities is to ensure that different kinds of disparities are recognised and measured, and then to develop locally-led strategies to address them. This collaboration aims to address this challenge by recognizing context-specific problems and identifying context-specific solutions and inform various levels of stakeholders ranging from urban planners to community groups.

Hungry Cities Partnership

IIHS is part of The Hungry Cities Partnership which links Canadian researchers with partner organisations in seven major cities in the South in planning and implementing a five-year, collaborative, interdisciplinary research, training and knowledge mobilisation program on urbanisation, food security, informality and inclusive growth. IIHS as research partner is involved in investigating these inter-connected dynamics in a rapidly urbanising city-scape like Bengaluru.

Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR)

IIHS leads one of the largest climate adaptation research programmes in South-Asia. The 5-year (2014–2018) Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions (ASSAR) research programme is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) international climate adaptation research programme (funded by IDRC and DfID).

 

 

IIHS leads the South Asia research group, comprising the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR) and the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE). We are collectively engaged in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, examining issues of vulnerability and climate adaptation options and strategies. ‘Barriers and Enablers to Effective, Widespread and Sustained Adaptation’ is the meta-framework that defines the core of the ASSAR project. It is expected to lead to the identification of key policy focus while implementing climate adaptation strategies in India. The project provides a comparative framework across Africa and India while thinking about adaptation strategies. Therefore, it recognises the potential of learning from successful strategies in a different context. This project attempts to advance the understanding of constraining and enabling factors that determine successful adaptation.

 

The CARIAA | ASSAR scope included a year-long Regional Diagnostic Studies (RDS) phase and a 4-year long Regional Research Programme (RRP), which encompasses development of climate scenarios, qualitative and quantitative field-based research, and identification of scalable adaptation strategies in conjunction with government stakeholders and local communities.

Land Records Modernisation & E-Governance Initiatives

This project examined land records modernisation efforts in five Indian states: Karnataka, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Bihar and Gujarat. It involved a background study of the legal-institutional terrain as well as an analysis of the effectiveness of current and on-going land record reform programmes and e-governance initiatives, their linkages to planning and the technologies in use.

 

 

The study involved detailed secondary analyses, primary studies and key informant interviews in the selected states and specific sites within them. Different urban centres (Rohtak, Shimla, Vadodara, Dahej, Mysuru) were selected for more detailed field-based analysis within these states, in consultation with the state governments/ULBs. Aspects covered include the extent of integration of survey, land records and registration functions in these states, changes in relevant legislation, ease of property transactions, status of modernisation initiatives, etc.

Land Records Modernisation Initiatives in Maharashtra

IIHS conducted a detailed study of land records modernisation and e-governance initiatives in Maharashtra, covering the rural, peri-urban and urban continuum. The scope of the project included carrying out an assessment of the state including the status of computerisation of registration process, system of property records in apartments (including the role of cooperative housing societies), and the modernisation initiatives around the process of survey and city surveys. Secondary research on surrounding legal and institutional framework, and analysis of related policies and programmes, was strengthened by field visits, site-level studies, and interviews with key stakeholders. The scope included undertaking a diagnostic assessment, identifying various ‘gaps’ and ‘good practices’.

Land Records and Land Governance project

This project focuses on research, training and capacity building on issues around land administration via a new IIHS Centre for Land Governance. This follows the completion of the first multi-state independent land records review and assessment in 2014–15 that covered the rural, peri-urban and urban continuum. While building an interdisciplinary team within IIHS, the scope of the project includes designing and delivery of training and capacity building programmes for the government. It supports curriculum building through the integration of land governance into key teaching programmes at IIHS. The project includes policy support and advisory at various levels of government, and convening of multi-stakeholder dialogues.

Massive Open Online Course on Sustainable Cities

Following the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, the SDG Academy was set up by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN) with an objective to support the adoption of these goals. They aimed to bring experts from across the world on various sustainability challenges, and offer comprehensive curriculum to equip sustainable development practitioners to address complex challenges. To achieve this, they engaged IIHS, with its internal capabilities on content development, leveraging its existing global networks, and media production, to develop a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Sustainable Cities in the context of the SDGs, particularly Goal 11 that aspires to ‘Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable’. SDG Academy and IIHS started the 1.5-year partnership for the Sustainable Cities MOOC production on 1 August 2016.

Policy Advisory for Sustainable Housing

The International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group has commissioned IIHS in 2017 to conduct a policy analysis to develop potential policy bundles that could encourage sustainable housing at scale. The policy recommendations are being developed by the IIHS Design Lab in close coordination with the climate change team at IIHS and are supported by analytical evidence, Indian and international reference cases, and implementation protocols for various levels and sectors of government.