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Title:Shanghaization of Mumbai: visions, displacements, contestations
Author(s):Ghadge, Ravi
Director of Research:Nederveen-Pieterse, Jan
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Nederveen-Pieterse, Jan
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Wilson, David; Ghamari-Tabrizi, Behrooz; Dill, Brian J.
Department / Program:Sociology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
urban sociology
urban development
inclusive growth
urban studies
global south
emerging economies
Abstract:A central question in the field of global studies is how does the development planning of emerging economies address social inequality? The emerging economies have achieved remarkable economic success in recent years; however, this success has also accompanied new challenges of mega-urbanization, new rural and urban poverty and inequality. This has prompted a reexamination of the growth strategies in countries such as India and China who have made “inclusive growth” as their central goal of development planning. In the context of inclusive growth, urban development has emerged as a key problematic that seeks to balance high growth and reduction in poverty and inequality. Growth has fueled national ambitions for increasing power in world politics and the global market and cities are viewed as key actors in sustaining this growth. In this context, growth gets normalized, masking its inequities, unevenness, and contestations. Therefore, any serious discussion about inclusive growth in emerging economies has to take into account the complex urban realities within these societies and the challenges involved in making growth inclusive. Taking Mumbai—India’s “global city”—as a case, this dissertation explores competing claims of urban development among diverse stakeholders in the city (including planners, business associations, civic organizations, activists, and poor peoples’ movements) in the context of the recent national growth strategy in India that gives primacy to cities. I analyze the genealogies of emerging local (urban) development imaginaries, modeled after “successful” Asian cities, particularly Shanghai. In doing so, I focus on the processes, actors, visions, and practices that constitute and contest these urbanization strategies. The study was based on twelve months of field work (archival research, interviews, and ethnographic observation) in Mumbai. The study contributes in problematizing taken-for-granted assumptions of growth in the emerging economies and calls for broad-based inclusive development that focuses on the quality and welfare implications of growth. Some of the key findings of the study are: ~Shanghaization as an urban growth strategy was produced and sustained by a constellation of actors operating at multiple scales involving the corporate sector, the national and subnational state, and the urban middle classes. ~As a model of development, Shanghaization is narrowly focused on growth rather than broad-based development. As an entrepreneurial model, it privileges the urban middle-classes and does not address structural poverty and inequality in the city. ~Shanghaization is not merely a metropolitan imaginary, but has emerged as a national urban-centric model of development in India that is premised on uneven development. ~By challenging the narrow economic assumptions in development thinking, the poor people’s movements in the city open up possibilities for ground-up, broad-based developmental alternatives that are equitable and sustainable.
Issue Date:2013-08-22
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Ravi Ghadge
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-08-22
Date Deposited:2013-08

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