The politics of smart urbanism: how smart housing is (re)structuring power in urban India
Funding period: 1 March 2022 – 28 February 2025
Type of funding: Postdoctoral Research Fellowship
Dr Syeda Jenifa Zahan is a USF Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning at the Politecnico di Torino, Italy. Jenifa’s research focuses on smart housing developments and how these developments engender new forms of governance and (re)consolidation of power in urban India with a special focus on Delhi. Locating smart housing within broader historical trajectories of urban and housing planning and developments, Jenifa investigates the entrenched and new geographies of socio, economic and political power, especially the recalibration of the Indian state, in and through smart housing. Jenifa draws on feminist and postcolonial urban studies to examines how these new geographies of power are articulated, consolidated and put to practice. Jenifa further investigates how restructured and new geographies of power affect issues of marginality, inequality and difference in urban housing in Indian cities. Jenifa’s research is ethnographically rooted in a multi-scalar analysis of power using a multi-method fieldwork approach in Delhi, India.