IIHS Vision and Mission


India’s urbanisation is the second largest rural to urban transition in human history. By the middle of the century, at least 800 million Indians will live in cities and they will constitute more than half of India’s population. This is not just a demographic transition. Urbanisation is fundamentally changing India’s economy, society, culture, natural and built environments as well as politics. Our national development now hinges on urbanisation being handled with wisdom.


Launching a set of core Urban missions in 2015 including Smart Cities, AMRUT, PMAY, HRIDAY and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, ‘it would have been very beneficial if we had recognised urbanisation as an opportunity 25–30 years earlier and treated it as a foundation’.


In an urban century, this is a timely realisation for India and the world. Yet, two core challenges stand in the way of this urban transformation.


  • A new generation of interdisciplinary urban practitioners, innovators and scholars and those who have the right knowledge, skills and perspectives to tackle the problems of 21st century urbanisation, via cutting-edge practice, teaching and globally benchmarked research; and
  • New knowledge that they can use to find solutions to these apparently intractable challenges; and adapt, scale and replicate them across a nation of over 1.4 billion people, transforming the everyday lives of people and the economy, society and the environment, as we know it today.


IIHS will establish a national level institution of international eminence to address the above issues.


The proposed IIHS Institution of Eminence (IOE) is premised on this need to transform the current nature of urban education as one of the most important drivers for India’s national development and sustainable global futures. It does so in two key ways: (a) through undertaking interdisciplinary research and practice to help build new global knowledge; and (b) by training a new generation of urban professionals through the delivery of a set of transformative new degrees in Urban Practice. The proposed IIHS IOE takes urbanisation as the core of a new knowledge paradigm that provides the scaffolding for a new, interdisciplinary, 21st century University.


IIHS, the sponsoring organisation is a section 8 company under the Indian Companies Act, established in 2008 by eminent Indians who have distinguished themselves in various fields, including the government, private sector and civil society. They have come together for a common cause, i.e. to set up a proposed university i.e. the proposed IIHS (Institution of Eminence).