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BYPASS LAB - A study of peri-urban locality

Introduction:

In the month of June I participated in the BYPASS LAB, a one week workshop organised by the Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (IGCS), IIT Madras and hosted by the Rajiv Gandhi National Institute of Youth Development (RGNIYD) at Sriperumbudur. The workshop used a combination lectures and practical exercises to train early professionals and students on data gathering, data visualization and design research.

Programmes at the workshop

Case Studies of Community Managed Toilets in Urban Areas

October 13, 2016 Jasmitha Arvind

There is much to learn from the working of previously constructed community managed toilets. When it comes to public sanitation, it is the provision of facilities for the poorest that is often neglected. According to a 2011 census, only 46.9% of India’s homes have a toilet.[1] Open defecation is prominent among those who do not have access to private sanitation facilities and posses many health and safety risks. These could be the urban poor who live in slums and informal settlements and also commuters.

Increasing awareness towards water, sanitation and hygiene

In March 2016, CAG and Real Charitable Trust (RCT), a Chennai based NGO working with communities on health, solid waste management etc.,inaugurated a project with a long-term vision of revitalising the Madhavaram Truck Terminal (MTT) by working with city government officials, sanitation workers, truck drivers and owners, vendors, small businesses working within the terminal to improve the infrastructure and services related to drinking water, toilets, bathing, washing and waste management.

Privatisation and Commercialisation of Water in India

September 28, 2016 Gaurav Dwiwedi

During the past decade and half India has been witnessing measures to reform the water sector based on the financial sustainability model put forward by the international institutions based on principles like full cost recovery, rationalisation of water tariffs, privatisation and public private partnerships across urban, rural as well as agricultural sub-sectors. The move is towards privatisation, commercialisation and commodification of water sector.

Ambulance etiquette

September 19, 2016 Benedicta Isaac-Kumar

In a crowded country like India, where our senses are constantly assaulted by noises, colours and sights, its streets filled with jostling crowds and impatient vehicles competing for space and struggling to get past, it is no surprise that we have learnt to ignore anything extraneous to our own thoughts, needs and plans for the day.

In a pragmatic society like ours, we accept with little argument that death is inevitable. We all have to die and die of something. We see death and decay all too frequently, maybe chronically numbing our senses, destroying our empathy.

On Rights - Slum resettlement and the State government’s shortcomings in Chennai

September 17, 2016 Bilal Mohamed, Intern

Poor urban planning and management of cities and towns, large influx of people from rural areas to urban areas in search of jobs and opportunities, and the lack of affordable housing are the main factors which can be seen to lead to the growth and presence of settlements often referred to as slums. Slums are overcrowded settlements, often marked by a lack of basic amenities and tenure security. From time to time, the state re-settles slum dwellers, either in slums re-developed in situ or in tenements that are often in the peripheries of the city.

Meeting the God of Death at Basin Bridge

September 12, 2016 Poornima Chandran, Researcher

On August 7th 2016, I participated in a Traffic Awareness Campaign (TAC) organized by the Chennai-based volunteer group, Thozhan. My colleague, Prasanna Sugumaran had volunteered at a similar event some months ago and I decided to give it a shot, too. This time Thozhan had organised a much bigger event with the awareness campaign run at 100 junctions simultaneously.

Open Data and Subnational Governments: Lessons from Developing Countries

While the discussion on open government data, especially in developing countries, is at the national government level, it is the local is where data is collected and stored, and when published, can generate impact. In this recently-published synthesis paper, Michael Canares and Satyarupa Shekhar bring the focus of discussions of open government data from national to local contexts.

Save the Adyar River but with the same rules for all

It was on a Saturday Morning that I ventured on a walk, along with a group of volunteers, through the fishing communities of Foreshore Estate and Srinivasapuram. The aim was to learn about the way land was being taken away from these communities in the name of development and environmental protection, and the absence of detailed land records places them in a particularly precarious position.

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