Research Project

Citizenship and service delivery in urban India

This project aims to better understand the capacity of India’s rapidly growing cities to meet the needs of their citizens and provide key services such as water, sanitation, housing, and transportation. Sociologist Patrick Heller collaborates with Brown political scientist Ashutosh Varshney, the urban governance NGO Janaagraha in Bangalore, and Siddarth Swaminathan at Azim Premji University. Specifically, this research collects original data on the relationship between citizenship and service delivery in 15 Indian cities. To date, the research team has completed research in 9 cities - Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Bhavnagar, Vadodara, Chennai, Kochi, Hyderabab, Shimoga and Mysore. Data collection methods include focus groups, key respondent interviews, and a large and comprehensive household survey. The findings include detailed household and neighborhood-level data on access to locally provided services, the nature and quality of citizen participation in politics, and civic activity, state responsiveness, and a range of socio-economic variables including class, gender, caste and religion.