Indian Institute for Human Settlements | Shriya Anand

Shriya Anand

Lead - Academics & Research | sanand at iihs dot ac dot in

2011    MA, Public Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton
2005    MA, Mathematics Pure and Applied, University of Cambridge, UK
2003    BA, Mathematics (Hons), St. Stephen’s College, University of Delhi, Delhi



Countries: East Africa, India, Cambodia
States: Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan
Cities: Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bangalore
Languages: English, Hindi

Shriya anchors the Urban Informatics Lab at IIHS, which analyses, communicates and disseminates data and information related to India’s urbanisation. The Lab aims to develop new and innovative methods to study cities using both primary and secondary data, but also to simply and effectively communicate the insights arising from this analysis with different stakeholders.


In 2015-16, she co-directed the Urban Fellows Programme, IIHS’ flagship programme that seeks to equip, nurture and prepare a new generation of graduates and young professionals committed to the common good, who would go on to address India’s complex urban challenges through diverse practices.


Her research at IIHS is primarily centered on the Indian urban economy and economic geography, with a particular focus on the role of employment in urban development and poverty reduction. She has recently been studying large industrial infrastructure projects such as the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor, their relationship with urbanisation and associated choices about development pathways. IDFC, IGC (International Growth Centre), SEWA, UNESCO, UNDP, Tamil Nadu Department of Municipal Administration and Development Innovations Group are clients she has worked with. She holds a Masters in Public Affairs from Princeton University and a Masters in Mathematics from Cambridge University, UK.


While at Princeton, she worked with New Jersey Future, a non-profit organisation established to promote sustainable land use practices in the state of New Jersey, where she carried out research on the integration of economic and spatial planning in American cities. She also worked on a project for the International Monetary Fund, DC, looking at macroeconomic policy frameworks in East Africa, with a focus on prospects for inflation targeting and a monetary union. For her summer internship, she worked in Cambodia on a plan for a web-based information platform aggregating data on development and environmental issues in Cambodia.


Before her graduate education in public policy, she worked with the National Knowledge Commission, Delhi, an advisory panel constituted by the Prime Minister of India in 2005 to provide recommendations on how to improve India’s potential as a knowledge economy. There, she liaised with sector experts, carried out surveys, provided research support, and prepared policy papers on innovation and entrepreneurship in the Indian economy, vocational education, and library policy.


After that, she worked at the Centre for Development Finance, Chennai between 2007 and 2009. Here, she was responsible for expanding the work of the Urban Infrastructure and Governance team. Her work focused on urban infrastructure provision to low-income groups, specifically on developing innovative financing strategies and addressing governance challenges. There, she provided advisory inputs for the High Power Expert Committee on financing infrastructure, chaired by Dr Isher Ahluwalia. She prepared a case study on the Slum Networking Program in Ahmedabad, for presentation at the Boulder Housing Microfinance Program in 2008. She also managed an international competition to unearth instances of innovative institutional responses to India’s urban challenges in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Research Projects at IIHS

2014–2015 Reframing Urban Inclusion
2013–2015 IIHS–IGC study Project
2011–2012 IIHS–IDFC Project


Practice Projects at IIHS

2014 Sivaramakrishnan Committee for Identification of Capital for Andhra Pradesh
2013–2014 India Urban Policy Support Partnership
2013 Survey for the Tamil Nadu Urban Livelihoods Mission
2013 UNESCO-UNDP Creative Economy Report 2013
2012 UNDP India Urban Poverty Strategy 2013-17


Commons Urban and Regional Economic Development; Economy and Society; Quantitative Methods (basic)
Concentrations Land and Economic Development;

Quantitative Methods (advanced)

Concentration Elective Courses: Economic Development;

Urban Poverty



Anchor UPP Courses on Data Visualisation
Anchor UPP partnerships on using NSS data for urban research with IGIDR
  • Dey, A., & Anand, S. (2021). From factories to marriage halls – a case study Bangalore’s industrial transformation. In  S. Oosterlynck, E. Van Wymeersch, F.  Laoukili, M. Van Dam, & K. Boven (Eds.), RC21 Conference Sensing the City : Place, People, Power (p. 60). University of Antwerp, Belgium.
  • Anand, S., & Sami, N. (2021). Disjunct realities: The imaginaries of mega-infrastructure projects. In S. Oosterlynck, E. Van Wymeersch, F.  Laoukili, M. Van Dam, & K. Boven (Eds.), RC21 Conference Sensing the City : Place, People, Power (p. 47). University of Antwerp, Belgium.
  • 2017 Anand, S., & Sami, N. (2017, September) From the local to the trans-national: Regional planning and capital along the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor. Paper presented at the RC21 International Conference on the rethinking global urban justice, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.
  • 2017 Anand, S., & Sami, N. (2017, September) Scaling up, scaling down: State rescaling along the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor. Paper presented at the RC21 International Conference on the rethinking global urban justice, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
  • 2016 Anand, S, and Sami, N (2016) Public or Private: Non-State Actors and Urban Planning in India. Paper presented at conference on Questioning Development at Cornell University.
  • 2016 Anand, S., & Sami, N. (2016, July). Apples and Oranges: inter-regional comparisons within India. Paper presented at the RC21 International Conference on the Transgressive City: Comparative Perspectives on Governance and the Possibilities of Everyday Life in the Emerging Global City. Mexico: El Colegio De México.
  • 2015 Sami, N., & Anand, S. (2015). Manufacturing Cities: Industrial Policy and Urban Planning in India. Paper presented at the RC21 International Conference on The Ideal City: Between Myth and Reality. Representations, policies, contradictions and challenges for tomorrow’s urban life, Urbino, Italy, 27-29 August. Urbino: RC21 – Research Committee on Urban and Regional Development.
  • 2014 Anand, S., & Sami, N. (2014, October). Scaling up: Land use and economic development in India’s urban corridors. Paper presented at the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning 2014: Big Ideas, Global Impacts Conference, Philadelphia, PA.
  • 2012 Paper presentation at 6th Urban Research and Knowledge Symposium, Barcelona, October 2012
  • 2008 Case presentation at the Boulder Microfinance Training Programme, Turin, 2008.