Seminar Series on Land, Housing and Property Rights Webinar #6, Land Fictions Roundtable.


Date: April 26, 2022

Venue: Zoom Webinar


The Centre for Urban Policy and Governance, TISS Mumbai is pleased to invite you to the sixth Session of the Seminar Series “Land, Housing and Property Rights: Tracing Policy Shifts and Emerging Issues in India and the Global South” that will take place on 26th April 6:30- 8:30pm IST, through a Zoom Webinar.

Book Roundtable: Land Fictions

This Roundtable is focused on discussions based on the book, “Land Fictions: The Commodification of Land in City and Country”  edited by D. Asher Ghertner and Robert W. Lake and brought out by Cornell University Press in 2021. The book editors and two of the contributing authors participate in a conversation unpacking the dynamics of land commodification across different political, spatial and temporal settings. The discussion will be anchored by Hussain Indorewala.

D. Asher Ghertner is an associate professor in the Department of Geography at Rutgers University. In addition to co-editing Land Fictions with Robert Lake, he is the co-editor of Futureproof: Security Aesthetics and the Management of Life (Duke University Press, 2020) and author of Rule by Aesthetics: World-Class City Making in Delhi (Oxford University Press, 2015). Ongoing projects focus on informal housing in Delhi and rural New York, urban governance of and through air, and urban commons.

Robert W. Lake is Professor Emeritus in the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy and a member of the Graduate Faculties in Geography and Urban Planning at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. An urban and political geographer, he is the author or editor of seven books and more than fifty articles in academic and professional journals. His previous research examined the intersections of race and housing, community development, and environmental conflict. His current work explores the politics of urban land markets, collaborative and community-based planning, the financialization of public policy, and pragmatist approaches to the politics of knowledge production.

Michael Levien is associate professor of sociology at Johns Hopkins University. He is the author of Dispossession without Development: Land Grabs in Neoliberal India (2018) and the co-editor of Agrarian Marxism (2019) and Rural Land Dispossession in China and India (2020).

Sai Balakrishnan is an Assistant Professor of City and Regional Planning and Global Metropolitan Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. Her research and teaching broadly pivot around global urban inequalities, with a particular focus on urbanization and planning institutions in the global south, and on the spatial politics of land-use and property. She is the author of Shareholder Cities: Land Transformations along Urban Corridors in India (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019), which explores new spatial forms of urbanization by focusing on land contestations along infrastructural / economic corridors in liberalizing India.

Hussain Indorewala is a teacher and urban researcher. He teaches planning theory, housing and humanities at the Kamla Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute for Architecture (KRVIA) in Mumbai. His research work has focused on urban history, infrastructure planning, politics of land and housing, and sustainable transport.

Date: 26th April, Tuesday
Time:  6:30 pm to 8:30 pm (IST)

The webinar is scheduled on Zoom and all attendees are required to register for the session through the Registration link provided below.

Zoom Registration Link

About the Series:
This is a collaborative effort between the Centre for Urban Policy and Governance, TISS Mumbai and Omidyar Network India. The purpose of the series is to create interdisciplinary dialogue amongst academic scholars and practitioners, activists and policymakers with a focus on:

  • Contemporary developments related to, and ongoing experiments in, making land and housing more accessible and inclusive.
  • Addressing themes related to land rights for marginalised urban groups, issues and challenges of real estatization, the commons as a way of contesting the commodification of land, and
  • Formal and informal land markets in the Global South, and
  • Theorizing land and social relations around land