India is urbanizing rapidly: by 2030 more than 40% of the country’s population is projected to become urban.

As a major 21st century issue, opportunities and challenges posed for India’s urban governance are pressing.  Questions on access and rights to the city, the management and disposal of waste, working lives and forms of mobile labour, are some of the themes that the OICSD is concerned with.  Through conceptual innovation and empirically-grounded research, we are building novel understandings of the spatial and social organization of human activity, its intersection with animal inhabitants of the urban and waste.

Our work shows that extending inquiry to wider ecologies of relations has important bearings for urban governance (access to the commons and infrastructure), urban design (modes of planning and regulation), and urban politics (contested and conflicting practices).  This work, done through collaborative engagements between human geographers, urban ecologists, and cultural anthropologists, generates conceptual frameworks that provide alternate viewpoints on urbanization in India, than those usually on record.  Our work has featured in leading international journals, and we are working closely with policy makers in India to translate conceptual developments into effective practice.

Maan Barua’s Academic Publications:

Barua, M. (2017) Nonhuman labour, encounter value, spectacular accumulation: the geographies of a lively commodity. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 42(2): 274-288.
Lorimer, J., Hodgetts, T. and Barua, M. (2017) Animals’ atmospheres. Progress in Human Geography.
Barua, M. (2016) Lively commodities and encounter value. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 34(4): 725-744.
Zablocki, J., Arora, S. and Barua, M. (2016) Factors affecting media coverage of species rediscoveries. Conservation Biology, 30(4): 914-917.
Barua, M. (2015) Encounter: Living Lexicon for the Environmental Humanities. Environmental Humanities, 7: 265-270.
Jadhav, S., Jain, S., Kannuri, N., Bayetti, C. and Barua, M. (2015) Ecologies of Suffering: Mental Health in India. Economic and Political Weekly, 50(20): 12-15.
Lorimer, J., Sandom, C., Jepson, P., Doughty, C., Barua, M. and Kirby, K. (2015) Rewilding: Science, practice and politics. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 40.
Barua, M. (2014) Bio-geo-graphy: landscape, dwelling and the political ecology of human-elephant relations. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 32(5): 915-934.
Barua, M. (2014) Circulating elephants: unpacking the geographies of a cosmopolitan animal. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 39(4): 559-573.
Barua, M. (2014) Volatile ecologies: towards a material politics of human-animal relations. Environment and Planning A, 46(6): 1462-1478.
Ginn, F., Beisel, U. and Barua, M. (2014) Flourishing with Awkward Creatures: Togetherness, Vulnerability, Killing. Environmental Humanities, 4: 113-123.
Barua, M., Bhagwat, S.A. and Jadhav, S. (2013) The hidden dimensions of human–wildlife conflict: Health impacts, opportunity and transaction costs. Biological Conservation, 157: 309-316.
Jadhav, S. and Barua, M. (2012) The Elephant Vanishes: impact of human–elephant conflict on people’s wellbeing. Health and Place, 18(6): 1356-1365.
Barua, M. (2011) Mobilizing metaphors: the popular use of keystone, flagship and umbrella species concepts. Biodiversity and Conservation, 20(7): 1427-1440.