Aromar Revi

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Aromar ReviEmail id : arevi at iihs dot co dot in
Twitter: @ aromarrevi

Aromar Revi is Director of the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) India’s prospective independent national University for Research & Innovation addressing its challenges of urbanisation, through an integrated programme of education, research, practice and training.

Education: He is an alumnus of IIT-Delhi and the Law and Management Schools of the University of Delhi. He is also a Fellow of the India-China Institute at the New School University, New York.


Career Highlights

Aromar Revi is an international practitioner, consultant, researcher and educator with over thirty years of inter-disciplinary experience in public policy and governance, the political economy of reform, development, technology, sustainability and human settlements.

He is a member of the Leadership Council of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), co-chair of its Urban thematic group, where he leads a global campaign for an urban Sustainable Development Goal (SDG).

He has been a senior advisor to various ministries of the Government of India, consulted with a wide range of UN, multilateral, bilateral development and private sector institutions and works on economic, environmental and social change at global, regional and urban scales. He was responsible for the development of housing and urban development plans for two-thirds of India’s states in the 1990s.

Aromar has led over 100 major research, consulting & implementation assignments in India and abroad; helped structure, design & review development investments of over $ 8 billion; worked on 3 of the world’s 10 largest cities; and across all of India’s 29 states and multiple international projects in half a dozen countries.

He is a global expert on Sustainable Urban development; has helped mobilise a successful international campaign for an urban SDG as part of the UN’s post-2015 development agenda, which brought major global urban institutions (UN Habitat, UCLG, C-40, ICLEI, Metropolis, WUC, SDI and WEIGO) and over 200 cities and organisations together.

Aromar is one of South Asia’s leading experts on global environmental change & Climate adaptation and mitigation. He is a Coordinating Lead Author of the IPCC Assessment Report 5 on Urban Areas and co-PI of a 5-year international multi-million dollar Climate Adaptation research programme that spans India and Africa.

He is one of South Asia’s most experienced risk and disaster management professionals having led teams to plan & execute rehabilitation programmes for 10 major earthquake, cyclone and flood events affecting over 5 million people and is on the Advisory Board of UNISDR’ Scientific & Technical Advisory Group and its bi-annual Global Assessment of Risk.

Awards & Recognition

Aromar is considered a global development thought leader and delivered the first Kapuscinski development lecture in Africa on “Placing the urban at the heart of the SDGs“ at the University of Cape Town. He also addressed the 7th plenary session of the UN Open Working Group on SDGs at the United Nations in New York in 2014.

Aromar has made significant contributions to human settlements development in India, for which he was elected an Ashoka Fellow in 1990. This includes a key role in the design of India’s national public housing programme – that now facilitates the building of over 2 million rural houses a year; infrastructure planning, upgrading and institutional reform in a number of million-plus cities. Ashoka Fellows are leading social entrepreneurs who are recognized for their innovative solutions to social problems and their potential to change society.

He is a Fellow of the India China Institute at the New School University, New York, where he engaged with Indian, Chinese and US scholars in addressing key strategic challenges before these countries in the early 21st century.

Publications, Teaching & Research

Aromar Revi has written and edited five books and contributed to over 50 peer reviewed publications across multiple disciplines. He lectured and taught at over to three dozen of the world’s leading Universities and think tanks across six continents.

Aromar serves on the Editorial Boards of the International Journal of Urban Sustainable Development, Environment & Urbanisation Asia and Urban Climate.

Selected Publications:

  1. Revi, A. (2017, May 1). Habitat III struggled to deliver — but nonetheless, a new global urban agenda is upon us. Citiscope.
  2. Revi, A. (2016). Afterwards: habitat III and the sustainable development goals. Urbanisation, 1(2), 10-14.
  3. Bazaz, A., Jana, A., Revi, A., Malladi, T (2016). Urban India 2016: Evidence. Bangalore: Indian Institute for Human Settlements.
  4. Revi, A., Sivakumar, D. K., Chatterji, N., Singh, C., Lokesh, B. S., & Jha, D. (2016). Visualising and understanding urban growth and expansion. Bangalore: Indian Institute for Human Settlements.
  5. McPhearson, T., Parnell, S., Simon, D., Elmqvist, T., Bai, X., Gaffney, O.,….Revi, A. (2016). Building urban science to achieve the new urban agenda. The Nature of Cities.
  6. McPhearson, T., Parnell, S., Simon, D., Gaffney, O., Elmqvist, T., Bai, X.,…. Revi, A. (2016). Scientists must have a say in the future of cities. Nature, 538, 165–166. doi:10.1038/538165a
  7. Revi, A., Gajjar, S. P., Bazaz, A., Jain, G. & Basu, R. (2016). Bangalore, India. In S. Bartlett & D. Satterthwaite (Eds.), Cities on a finite planet: towards transformative responses to climate change (pp. 41-61). New York: Routledge.
  8. Simon, D., Arfvidsson, H., Anand, G., Bazaz, A., Fenna, G., Foster, K.,…. & Nyambuga, C. (2016). Developing and testing the urban sustainable development goal’s targets and indicators–a five-city study. Environment and Urbanization, 28(1), 49-63.
  9. Parnell, S., Siri, J.G., Elmqvist, T., Marcotullio, P., Capon, A., Revi, A., & Boufford, J. (2015). Making the sustainable development goals operational through an urban agenda: perspectives from science. The Solutions Journal, 5(2), 37-40.
  10. Revi, A., Jana, A., Malladi, T., Anand, G., Anand, S., Bazaz, A.,…. Shah, S. (2015). Urban India 2015: evidence. Bangalore: Indian Institute for Human Settlements.
  11. Revi, A., Satterthwaite, D., Aragón-Durand, F., Corfee-Morlot, J., Kiunsi, R. B., Pelling, M.,…. Sverdlik, A. (2014). Towards transformative adaptation in cities: the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment. Environment and Urbanization, 26(1), 11-28.
  12. Field, C. B., Barros, V. R., Satterthwaite, D., Mastrandrea, M. D. Mach, Katharine J., Revi, A., (2014). IPCC climate change 2014: impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability: summary for policymakers. In Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability. Part A: Global and Sectorial Aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (pp.1-32). New York: Cambridge University Press.
  13. Revi, A. and N. Sami (2013). Social science research and global environmental change in India and South Asia. In ISSC and UNESCO, World Social Science Report 2013: Changing Global Environments (pp. 198-206). Paris: OECD Publishing/UNESCO Publishing.
  14. Revi, A., & Rosenzweig, C. (2013). The urban opportunity: enabling transformative and sustainable development. Report presented to the High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Agenda. Paris: Sustainable Development Solutions Network.
  15. Mukhopadhyay, P., & Revi, A. (2012). Climate change and urbanization in India. In N. K. Dubash (Ed.), A Handbook of Climate Change and India: Development, Politics and Governance (pp. 303-316). New Delhi: Oxford University Press.
  16. Revi, A., Idicheria, C., Jain, G., Anand, G., Sudhira, H., Seddon, J.,… Srinivasan, S. (2011). Urban India: evidence 2011. Bangalore: Indian Institute for Human Settlements.
  17. Revi, A. (2010). Two countries, diverse systems: a shared future? an essay on the global significance of India and China’s increasing engagement. In A. Gurung. Growing Cities in a Shrinking World: The Challenges in India and China (pp. 1-9). New Delhi: MacMillan.
  18. Revi, A., & Patel, S. (Eds.). (2010). Recovering from earthquakes: response, reconstruction and impact mitigation in India (pp.384-404). New Delhi: Routledge.
  19. Wu, X., Revi, A., & Doshi, H. (2009). The comparison of China and India: national innovation system communications (Vol. 27, pp. 7.2). New York: India China Institute.
  20. Mukhopadhyay, P., & Revi, A. (2009). Keeping India’s economic engine going: climate change and the urbanisation question. Economic and Political Weekly 44(31), 59-70.
  21. Mehta, A., & Revi, A. (2009). Land market and urban development challenges to improved water and sanitation provision to the slums of Mumbai. In Mumbai Reader ’08 (pp. 412-450). Mumbai: UDRI.
  22. De la Fuente, A., Revi, A., Lopez-Calva, L. F., Serje, J., Ramirez, F., Rosales, C., …. Dercan, S. (2009). Deconstructing disaster: risk patterns and poverty trends at the local level. Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction. United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, Geneva, Switzerland, 59-85.
  23. Revi, A. (2008). Furthering pro-poor urban climate change adaptation in low and middle income countries. Background paper prepared for the World Bank, International Institute for Environment and Development, London.
  24. De la Fuente, A., López-Calva, L. F., & Revi, A. (2008). Assessing the relationship between natural hazards and poverty: a conceptual and methodological proposal. New York: UNDP.
  25. Revi, A. (2008). Climate change risk: an adaptation and mitigation agenda for Indian cities. In. J. Bicknell, D. Dodman, D. Satterthwaite (Eds.). Adapting Cities to Climate Change: Understanding and Addressing the Development Challenges (pp. 311-333). New Delhi: Earthscan.
  26. Revi, A., & Singh, A. K. (2007). Cyclone and storm surge, pedestrian evacuation and emergency response in India. In N. Waldau, P. Gatterman, H. Knoflacher, M. Schreckenberg (Eds.), Pedestrian and Evacuation Dynamics 2005 (pp. 119-130). Berlin Heidelberg: Springer.
  27. Revi, A. (2007). Housing – public policy priorities. In N. Sengupta (Ed.), Economic Studies of Indigenous and Traditional Knowledge. New Delhi: Academic Foundation.
  28. De Vries, H.J.M., Revi, A., Bhat, G., Hilderink, H., & Lucas, P. (2007). India 2050: scenarios for an uncertain future (MNP Report No. 5500330022) Netherlands: Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency.
  29. Revi, A., Prakash, S., Mehrotra, R., Bhat, G., Gupta, K., & Gore, R. (2006). Goa 2100: the transition to a sustainable urban design. Environment and Urbanization, 18(1), 51-65.
  30. Revi, A. (2005). Lessons from the deluge: priorities for multi-hazard risk mitigation. Economic and Political Weekly, 40(36), 3911-3916.
  31. Atkisson, A., Revi, A., Mehrotra, R., Prakash, S., & Bhat, G. (2005). Introducing ‘RUrbanism’: the Goa 2100 project.
  32. Revi, A., De Vries, H. J. M., & Dronin, N. (2003). Population & environment in Asia since 1600. In B. D. Vries & J. Goudsblom (Eds.), Mappae Mundi: Humans and Their Habitats in a Long-Term Socio-Ecological Perspective: Myths, Maps and Models. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.
  33. Mehrotra, R., Prakash, S., & Revi, A. (2003). Goa 2100 urban design for a sustainable future. Tokyo: Institute of Behavioral Sciences.
  34. Revi, A., & Joshi, S. (2003). Healthier housing for developing countries. In H. N. B. Gopalan & Sumeet (Eds.), Domestic Environments and the Health of Women & Children (pp. 167-178). New Delhi: TERI.
  35. Revi, A., & Dube, M. (1999). Indicators for urban environmental services in Lucknow-process and methods. Environment and Urbanization, 11(2), 227-246.
  36. Meadows, D. H., Atkisson, A., Baysal, H., Davis, J., Revi, A.,…. Vuuren, D. V. (1998). Indicators and information systems for sustainable development. South Carolina:  Sustainability Institute.
  37. Leckie, S., Revi, A., & Ortiz, E. (1996). Still waiting: housing rights violations in a land of plenty: the Kobe earthquake and beyond. México: HIC.
  38. Valmeekinathan, S., & Revi, A. (1996). Designing the Balram. New Delhi: Development Alternatives.
  39. Revi, A., & Batra, P. (1994). Giving children back their childhood. In L. Iyer & A. Revi (Eds.), Beyond Housing: Child and Community Centered Habitat Transformation (pp 49-70). New Delhi: Plan International Region of South Asia.
  40. Bhat, G. K., & Revi, A. (1995). Water crisis in earthquake-affected areas of Marathwada. Economic and Political Weekly, 30(29), 1826-1830.
  41. Revi, A., & Kishore, K. (1994). Post-earthquake reconstruction in Marathwada. Architecture + Design, 17-27.
  42. Revi, A., & Iyer, L. (Eds.). (1994). Beyond housing: child and community centered habitat transformation. New Delhi: Plan International Region of South Asia.
  43. Arya, A. S., Revi, A., & Jain, P. (1994). Earthquakes and buildings. New Delhi: TARU.
  44. Revi, A. (1990). Shelter in India. New Delhi: Vikas.
  45. Scott, C. A., & Revi, A. (1988). Cover the earth—plaster for soil block buildings. New Delhi: Development Alternatives.
  46. Khosla, A., Prakash, S., & Revi, A. (1986). A transcultural view of sustainable development: the landscape of design. Landscape and Urban Planning, 13, 401-410.


Lectures & Public appearances

Aromar has delivered over a hundred keynote addresses and lectures to audiences and events across India and the world. A few have been captured on digital video.