Informal Urbanism: Cases drawn from Delhi

Directeur /trice Prof. René Véron
Co-directeur(s) /trice(s)
Résumé de la thèse

India is fast urbanizing and a major chunk of this urbanization consists of non-formal or so called informal settlements. Non-formal settlements, is an urban phenomenon which majorly results from the self help nature of the urban poor, and socio-political negotiations in an urban state of affairs.


This research intends to take the perspective, of learning from the development dynamics of the non-formal settlements and its interaction with the formal. Usually non-formal is referred to as informal, as it is studied by keeping the formal in the milieu, i.e. informal becomes the reaction to or as a resultant of the formal. By terming it non-formal, this research tends to see both formal and non-formal on an equal ground and try to understand the overlaps, collaborations and contradictions. It is expected that this way of understanding Indian urbanism will help in better policy formulation and further increase the scope of improving lives and livelihoods in post-colonial cum neo-liberal Indian cities.


India started Master Plan(ing) its cities post independence to regulate its urban areas, sixty years have passed and still there has been no indigenous method or improvement on the same. This calls for a study of the non-formal settlements that are out of the ambit of the Master Plan, so as to understand the nature of development which is not under formal control and show light towards an Indian Urbanism.


This research will enquire the social and political negotiations and the micro dynamics within the settlement that governs its development.


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