UK Project Team

Principal Investigator

Prof. Ayona Datta, Professor in Human Geography (UniversityCollege London)

Ayona Datta

Prof. Datta’s research interests are in postcolonial urbanism, gender citizenship, and urban futures. Her research seeks to advance theoretical and empirical insights into the politics of urban transformations through the investigation of smart cities as experiments in urban citizenships. She is author of ‘The Illegal City: Space, law and gender in a Delhi squatter settlement’ (Ashgate, 2012); co-editor of Mega-Urbanisation in the Global South: Fast cities and new urban utopias of the postcolonial state’ (Routledge, 2017) and Translocal Geographies: Spaces, places, connections’ (Routledge, 2011). She is currently editor of Dialogues in Human Geography and Urban Geography. She is also on the editorial boards of Antipode, Gender, Place and Culture, and Society and Space. Ayona blogs as The city inside out.



Dr Don Slater, Associate Professor (Reader) in Sociology (Department of Sociology, London School of Economics and Political Science)           

CL Headshots_Don-11Professor Slater is Co-Director of the Configuring Light/Staging the Social research group. His current research focuses on light and lighting as core elements of urban fabric, and aims to foster dialogue and  collaboration between social research, lighting design and urban planning, particularly in public realm space and infrastructure. Prior to this, he worked for many years on information technology, media and digital culture in development contexts, including the South Asia, West Africa and Latin America, with projects for UNESCO and DFID (publications included New Media, Development and Globalization’ (Polity, 2013); and The Internet: An ethnographic approach’ (Berg, 2001, with Daniel Miller). Other publications include The Technological Economy (Routledge, 2005, with Andrew Barry); ‘Consumer Culture and Modernity’ (Polity, 1998); and ‘Market Society’ (Polity, 2002, with Fran Tonkiss).


Dr Joanne Entwistle, Reader in the Department of Culture, Media and Creative Industries (King’s College London)

Joanne Entwistle
Joanne Entwistle

Dr Entwistle is Co-Director of Configuring Light/Staging the Social. She has published extensively on the sociology of fashion, dress and the body and aesthetic markets and economies. She is author of ‘Fashioning Models: Image, text, industry’, co-edited with Elizabeth Wissinger (Berg, 2012) and The Aesthetic Economy: Markets and value in clothing and modelling’ (Berg, 2009). Her current research and consultancy examines light and lighting as material practice, focusing on public realm lighting and urban planning and design. She has conducted qualitative research on lighting master planning, and lighting in social housing and inner city redevelopment. She is author of the forthcoming book ‘Configuring Light’ (with Don Slater) to be published by Palgrave in 2019.


Postdoctoral Research Associate

Dr Nabeela Ahmed, Urban Futures Research Group (Department of Geography, King’s College London) **moved to University of Sheffield**

KCL SSPP Headshots 2018-220
Nabeela Ahmed

Dr Ahmed is an interdisciplinary researcher interested in social exclusion, migration and state-citizen relations in post-colonial urban contexts; and in using participatory qualitative methods to understand these areas. She completed her doctorate at the University of Sussex, Department of Geography, based on research in western India, exploring the experiences of urban migrants in accessing citizen entitlements.  At the University of Sussex, Nabeela taught Geographies of Development and Inequality for undergraduates. Previously she worked with multiple NGOs in South Asia, including BRAC in Bangladesh, and various civil society organisations across India, working mainly on education initiatives in urban slum settlements. Nabeela also worked on the ‘Gender Adolescence Global Evidence (GAGE)’ project with the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).


India Project Team


Dr Rakhi Tripathi, Head of the Centre for Digital Innovation (FORE School of Management)

1379330756rakhiProfessor Tripathi is an expert in Digital Innovation and Technologies. She is Head of the Centre for Digital Innovation at FORE, which is responsible for the digital presence of the FORE School of Management. In 2012, she was awarded the ‘Best Professor in Information Technology Management’ prize by the National Education Awards. Several of her research papers on the topic of Digital Innovation and Technologies have been published in international journals and magazines such as the Journal of e-Government Studies and Best Practices, Governance Today, International Journal of Electronic Government Research and Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, and she has worked on projects on Cloud Computing, Digital Innovation and Web Analytics. Prior to FORE, she worked as Senior Project Scientist at I.I.T., Delhi on a prestigious project on Computer Networks.


Societal Partners

Dr Kalpana Viswanath, Co-Founder and CEO (Safetipin)

Kalpana VDr Viswanath has been working on issues of urban safety and inclusion for women for over 20 years. She is the co-founder of Safetipin, a mobile app developed to support community and women’s safety, and has worked as a consultant for UN Women and UN-Habitat. She has spearheaded the Safe Delhi for Women initiative led by Jagori, an NGO based in Delhi, since 2005, provided technical support to safe city for women programs in Cambodia, Pakistan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Kerala, Mumbai and Kolkata and is a Board member of the International Centre for the Prevention of Crime (ICPC), the Chair of the International Advisory Committee of Women in Cities International (WICI) and Chair of Jagori. Kalpana has also published widely in magazines and journals and Co-edited a book on building Gender Inclusive Cities (Routledge, 2012).


Rwitee Mandal, Senior Program Manager (Safetipin)

rwitee-mandalRwitee Mandal is currently a visiting faculty member in the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi Postgraduate Urban Design Programme. She is also Senior Program Manager at Safetipin. She is an Architect and Urban Designer from the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, India. She has worked as a consultant and adviser on both green-field neighbourhood designs and inner-city interventions in India. Her primary expertise lies on the subject of ‘gender and space’ and she has worked in varied capacities with women-centric organisations and citizens groups.

Sakhi Women’s Resource Centre

sakhi combined logo - mk editsSakhi Women’s Resource Centre is a grassroots charitable organisation and women’s resource centre in Kerala that conducts applied research, advocacy and campaigning on eVAW with women from marginal communities.

The Centre was set up with the support of the John D and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation in the form of a three-year fellowship awarded to Aleyamma Vijayan in 1996, after she worked for 16 years with marginalised communities. The aim of the organisation is to empower marginalised people, especially women and children, through knowledge and skills. Their focus has been on women from fishing communities, elected women representatives of local self governments, youth from marginalised and rural communities and women facing violence in domestic and public life.

f12olwFC_400x400.jpgSusan Sukanya, Research Associate (Sakhi Women’s Resource Centre)

Susan Sukanya is a social science researcher interested in the economic evaluation of policies and its impact on communities using exploratory research methods and quantitative analysis. Prior to her PhD, she was a Research Assistant in the Centre for Development Studies, assisting in the research project ‘Sarva Siksha Abhiyan – Education For All’. While in college, she also did an internship with the Centre for Development Studies (CDS). She is currently working on her doctoral thesis focused on how environmental degradation affects women’s health and their healthcare expenditure pattern along coastal areas. Her major areas of interests include Health Economics, Environmental Economics, Development and Women’s Studies. Sudan holds a Master’s degree in Economics from Madras Christian College and is currently a Senior Research Scholar in Applied Economics in Cochin University of Science and Technology.

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