Urbanizing Chennai. The role of urban peripheries in steering economic growth and pursuing sustainability.

Start Date: Oct, 2021
Status: Ongoing

Project Details

Department Social Sciences
Duration 3 Year(s)
Funding Agency(ies)



CEIAS (CNRS-EHESS), Paris; MIDS, Chennai; Indo-German Center for Sustainability, Chennai;

University of Cologne; University of Twente

Team Loraine KENNEDY
Email kennedy.loraine AT gmail DOT com

Project Description

The objective of this research is to generate knowledge about Chennai’s specific urbanization trajectory through the study of economic and social processes, in conjunction with their spatial and environmental outcomes. This research aims to contribute to the emerging scholarship on peripheral urbanization in India, and across the global South. The project will document and analyse the profound transformation of metropolitan Chennai that has transpired over the last three decades. In doing so, it will consolidate and expand on the existing knowledge base by bridging diverse research fields and identifying new sites of investigation. In particular, the project combines research tools from the geospatial sciences (e.g., remotes sensing, GIS) with social science methods to construct a multiscalar approach, building on recent academic work. It will map developments at the metropolitan scale as well as at the micro-level, through in-depth study of selected locations.

This ‘Urbanizing Chennai’ project engages with the four main keywords of the Department of Social Sciences: space, labor, environment, knowledge. It is being conducted in collaboration with partners in India, notably the MIDS in Chennai and the Indo-German Center for Sustainability (IIT-Madras), and in Europe, notably the CEIAS (CNRS-EHESS) in Paris, the University of Cologne in Germany and University of Twente in The Netherlands.