People

Alfred Peter
Alfred Peter, is the founder of The Atelier, a leading design studio in the field of landscape architecture and urbanism. Since its founding in 1985, the firm has successfully carried out about 100 large-scale development, infrastructure and public space projects. The landscape integration of the tramway in Strasbourg, France established us as experts in public space projects that combine mobility and urban quality. For each project, we advocate an economy of means and seek to create meaningful synergies. Each project is regarded as a new challenge requiring extensive research and experimentation. Therefore, our studio could also be described as a “Laboratory of Festive Ecology”. Atelier Alfred Peter also collaborates extensively with many internationally renowned experts, expanding our horizons and enabling effective response to any scale of planning or design. issues.
Amit Prothi
Amit Prothi is Director at the Global Resilient Cities Network, a grantee of the Rockefeller Foundation, that collaborates with nearly 100 cities globally to protect vulnerable communities from climate change and other physical, social and economic urban adversities and challenges. Mr. Prothi is trained as an urban planner, landscape architect and architect from MIT, UMass (Amherst) and SPA (Delhi). He has practiced in North America, Asia and Africa on projects and studies funded by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, as well as numerous government and private sector clients. For over 20 years, Mr. Prothi has worked with multidisciplinary teams on thematic areas that relate directly to urban resilience; these include environmental planning, urban policy, land use planning, natural resource management, flood management, disaster risk reduction, housing, and community development.
Anjum Dhamija
Anjum is an engineer, economist and social innovation manager by training. Transitioning from a technical design and strategy background in Investment Banking, Anjum brings with her a unique experience of managing projects not only in Investment Banking but also grassroots development organisations. Her theory of change around systemic reforms and interest in urban sustainability brought her to CITIIS. As part of the program, she contributes across the verticals of technology design & strategy, Procurement, Monitoring & Evaluation and Program Operations & Management. She is a fellow from Amani Institute's India Class 1 and winner of Mantra Award for Social Leadership 2013 by BITS Alumni Association. In her spare time, she loves to read, spend time with nature and engage in experiential journeys.
Anuradha Yagya
Anuradha is an urban and social development expert with professional experience of over 17 years. She is an expert in Resettlement and Rehabilitation (R&R) Planning for highway, urban infrastructure projects and mining projects (experience also on planning for resettlement of indigenous people); Social Impact Assessment (SIA) for urban infrastructure and highway projects; Urban development and planning with focus on urban poverty, quality of life, gender, urban governance and institutional framework and Regional development planning including regional socio-economic assessments, resource base studies, etc. Anuradha has experience in working with a variety of clients including the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Central/State Government Departments such as the PWD, the Urban Development Departments, Highway Departments, etc. Anuradha's strengths include understanding Cross Sectoral issues due to experience in working with multidisciplinary teams, understanding of grass root level issues in project planning and implementation, and conducting stakeholder consultations and workshops.
Chris Blache
Chris Blache, an urban anthropologist, co-founded Genre et Ville in 2012 with urban designer and planner, Pascale Lapalud. She studied Psychology at Paris' University, graduated from the Conservatory of Music in Brooklyn New York. Back in France, she obtained an MBA degree at ESCP/EAP, Paris. She created and managed 9A+ Consulting from 1997 to 2012. An accomplished business and socio-ethno consultant with proven success and expertise in international market research and business innovation she is actively involved in women and LGBTI rights since 2008. She is a founding member of CBLP CestBeauLePouvoir and as such has initiated a number of artistic projects, among them “L’Eternel Masculin” and the “Petite Ceinture” series.
Gurmeet Sangha Rai
Gurmeet S Rai is a conservation architect based in New Delhi. She established CRCI India Pvt Ltd, a leading firm in heritage practice in India in 1996. CRCI has been involved in the preparation of conservation and management plans for a number of world heritage sites across the country. CRCI has also provided expertise in Nepal, Myanmar and in several states of India. Gurmeet is recognized for the high quality of conservation works she has undertaken on numerous protected and unprotected monuments across India. She was awarded ‘Award of Distinction’ for two projects by UNESCO under Asia Pacific Architectural Heritage Awards in the year 2002 and 2004 for demonstrating community inclusive conservation programs.
Michael King
Michael King works with progressive cities, campuses, and NGOs to invert the dominant auto-centric paradigm and advance a green mobility ethos. Trained in architecture and urban design, Michael taught himself transportation planning and traffic engineering because streets make up such a large percentage of the urban footprint and mobility is key to how we grow our economies, increase safety and combat climate change. Michael’s work has taken him to 20 states, 22 countries and 5 continents.
Mukut Sharma
Mukut is a Civil Engineer and Contracts Management professional certified as a Chartered Project Management Surveyor (by Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, UK) with over 30 years multifarious experience in Urban Infrastructure and Real Estate Sectors. He is involved at the bidding and implementation stages for projects funded under a variety of Bilateral, Multilateral and Mixed Credit arrangements involving institutions like ADB, World Bank, OECF, SIDA, NORAD, NDF etc, enabling familiarity with the Procurement Guidelines. Mukut has approximate 20 years experience with International Contractors of repute followed by 10 years on the Client side managing Procurement Process (for Consultants / Contractors / SubContractors etc).
Naim Keruwala
Naim is an urban management professional with over ten years of experience in the sector. He is currently the Program Manager for CITIIS at NIUA. Prior to joining NIUA, he headed the Governance and Advocacy department of Sulochana Thapar Foundation (philanthropic arm of the US$ 4 billion Avantha Group) and Urban Governance department of Janwani (an initiative of the Mahratta Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture). In 2014, he was part of the three member team that developed a post graduate program on Urban Economic Development at the Symbiosis School of Economics; and he has been teaching urban governance, urban finance and urban development experience as a visiting faculty at the School since then. His research papers and articles have been published by UNESCO, Business Standard, Youth Policy Labs, CCDS and Cambridge Scholars among others. Naim is a World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Shaper, an Associate fellow of The Royal Commonwealth Society, a member of the Commonwealth Youth & Gender Equality Network (CYGEN) and an alumnus of AIESEC. He is also a recipient of the Nuffic NFP Scholarship on Inclusive Governance funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) on Smart Cities funded by the US Department of State.
Nidhi Misra
Nidhi is a development communication specialist with over five years experience in bringing together stakeholders, unpacking and communicating research. She has managed projects for a wide set of clients, from international development organizations, to local research and aid groups. Nidhi has also worked in research and advocacy, as a research and outreach associate. She worked with non-governmental organisations that defended the rights of waste workers, the homeless, and slum dwellers, to access social benefit schemes, formal employment, and affordable housing. An alumni of the Asian College of Journalism, Nidhi reported issues of urban development for Mint in New Delhi.
Pranay Bhardwaj
Pranay leads the technology team at NIUA to build solutions that enable real time tracking and management of projects. With the CITIIS program, Pranay has developed automated systems for the CITIIS project application process, the jury vetting and selection and also form for capacity building workshops. He works closely with the team and developers to create the CITIIS Management Platform and the CITIIS website. Pranay is adept in API development, web architecture and design solutions and Nginx and Linux server management. He has a master’s degree in Computer Applications and is a Drupal contributor as well.
Pranjali Deshpande
Pranjali Deshpande- Agashe is an architect and urban planner with work experience in architecture and transportation planning for over a decade. She works on sustainable transportation with many city governments. She manages the Maharashtra Programme, for the Institute of Transportation and Development Policy. Pranjali has worked on various sustainable transport initiatives in Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad, Nashik, Chennai as well as with the Urban Development department of Maharashtra. She has worked extensively in the field of bus rapid transit systems in India - 'Rainbow' BRT (Pune- Pimpri-Chinchwad), a publication of Indian Road Congress on BRT guidelines and proposed Chennai BRT.
Prasanna Desai
Prasanna Desai obtained a Bachelor’s in Architecture in 1980 and Master’s in Architecture (Urban Design) in 1983, both from the School of Planning and Architecture (SPA), New Delhi. He currently runs an architectural practice in Pune which is involved in urban design, emphasising the role of an architect in the public domain namely JNNURM BSUP Slum Rehabilitation work at Yerwada and Designing of safe and socially shared streets leading to the creation of healthy hygienic and humane neighbourhoods. He has been associated with academics for the past three decades and is currently a professor and director at P.V.P. College of Architecture, Pune. He has been the guiding force in the establishment of the forum for exchange and excellence in design FEED, a unique academic platform for students and architects in the city of Pune.
Pratap Kumar
Dr. Pratap Kumar is a clinician, neuroscientist, health economist and entrepreneur working at the interface of health sciences and healthcare markets. His work focuses on innovations in technology, clinical processes and business models in healthcare delivery. He has a medical degree (Goa Medical College) and MPhil in Neurophysiology (NIMHANS) from India, a PhD in Neuroinformatics (University/ETH Zurich), and an MSc in International Health Policy & Health Economics (LSE). He moved to Kenya in 2012 and founded Health-E-Net Limited, a social enterprise working to improve access and quality of primary healthcare in low-resource settings. He is also a Senior Lecturer in Strathmore University Business School in Nairobi, where he works on innovation and entrepreneurship in global health. His awards include a ‘Stars in Global Health’ grant from Grand Challenges Canada in 2013 and the 2018 Global Health Innovation Prize. He holds two patents on medical documentation technologies, which are in commercial use across East Africa. Dr. Kumar designs and teaches courses in the MBA-Healthcare Management program at Strathmore University, and is the Nairobi lead on a unique executive education program in Global Health Innovation Management (www.sepghim.eu), a collaboration between three business and two public health schools across three continents. He combines rich experience across medicine, health economics, technology, and business into his work on improving health and healthcare system across the world.
Seetha Raghupathy
Seetha Raghupathy is an Urban Designer from the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University. She has over 9 years of extensive design and project delivery experience in the fields of master planning, urban design and architecture across Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, India, USA. Her expertise is in townships, mixed use, airports, infill and urban revitalization, TOD, urban waterfronts, public housing and detailed urban design guidelines. She is also a visiting lecturer at the National University of Singapore and a Certified LEED professional. She is currently the project coordinator for World Bank’s City Planning Lab in Indonesia.
Shahena Khan
Shahena Khan is a Heritage Management and Urban Development Practitioner with more than a decade of professional experience on diverse projects in social architecture, urban development, policy and planning, pro-poor heritage and tourism development. As a consultant, she has worked with multilateral and bilateral organization, national and state governments, urban local bodies, not-for-profit organisation on multi-sectoral crosscutting urban issues in India. More recently, as a Chevening Scholar, she did MSc in City Design and Social Science from London School of Economics and Political Science. Her inclination towards academics and research has also led to her association with different academic institutions as a visiting faculty, mentor and coordinating collaborative international studio programmes and workshops.
Sharath Holla
Sharath Holla is a graduate from BITS-Pilani. Sharath has worked as a software developer for Amazon before starting an education technology startup - Ignus in 2014. Ignus works on making quality education accessible at cheaper prices. They have centres in two district capitals in Karnataka and are expanding further. Working on heading the technology, Sharath built a platform where one can create lessons containing videos and questions which can be used further in classrooms for teaching.
Siddharth Pandit
Siddharth Pandit currently leads the CITIIS program at National Institute of Urban Affairs. In his last 5.5 years at NIUA, he has been responsible for developing action-research models for improving urban concepts in project planning and development. An example of his work is the implementation of CIDCO's Smart City (Navi Mumbai South) plan and capacity building programs for CIDCO's 1600 staff across engineering, planning, finance and administration verticals. Siddharth concurrently works with the Director-NIUA in providing policy, technical and program management inputs to Ministry of Urban Development for its National Smart City Mission. He has led the collaborations with Bloomberg Philanthropies to develop the handholding process for the 97 Smart Cities under the guidance of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India. Siddharth and his teams have successfully developed various citizen engagement and crowd sourcing competitions for Smart Cities for the Prime Minister's Office, Pune Municipal Corporation and IIT-Chennai. Prior to joining NIUA, he has worked on urban policy focusing on transportation in developing countries and on development planning for Mumbai DP 2034. Siddharth has work experience in long range metropolitan planning as a consultant to New York Metropolitan Transportation Council and in urban advocacy at UDRI, Mumbai where he designed an urban education program for the municipal schools in Mumbai. He has background in technology, data and public policy with graduate education in Computer Science and Geography from University at Albany, and in urban planning from NYU Wagner School of Public Policy.
Swapnil Saxena
An architect and urban planner specializing in housing, Swapnil is driven by her deep passion about building environmentally sustainable, inclusive and resilient cities. In her current role in the CITIIS Program Management Unit at NIUA, she works across a range of verticals, including planning, research, management, and reporting functions under the program. She also supports the environmental and social safeguards vertical across projects. Prior to joining NIUA, Swapnil worked at Housing and Land Rights Network, New Delhi where she conducted research, training, and capacity building interventions focussing on the Right to Adequate Housing and Land, among low-income communities. She has been elected as a Local Pathways Fellow — 2020 cohort, by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network Youth Initiative (SDSN Youth), and is part of a global network of a young generation of thought leaders, activists, and innovators to help advance progress and work towards localising SDGs in cities they represent. Her research interests focus on urban development and policy in the context of housing and urban poverty, informality, livelihood and gender as lived experiences in the city. Swapnil has a B.Arch degree from Nagpur University and is a Registered Architect with the Council of Architecture, India. Additionally, she is the recipient of the SPA Gold Medal for the Best Student of Masters in Planning (specialisation in Housing, 2017), from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi.
Swati Janu
Swati Janu is an architect and urbanist whose work combines community engagement, policy advocacy and design pedagogy. Over the last decade, her research and practice has focused on themes of social justice, migration and urban informality. A graduate from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, Swati also holds an MSc in Sustainable Urban Development from the University of Oxford, UK. She is the founder of Social Design Collaborative as well as visiting faculty at School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi, and Ambedkar University, Delhi. She was recently nominated as one of the 13 India-France Young Leaders 2018 by the Franco-Indian Trust for her efforts in inclusive urban development and participatory architecture.
Tarun Sharma
Tarun Sharma, is an urban policy practitioner and researcher based in Dehradun, India. He is the co-founder of Nagrika, a social enterprise focused on small cities and providing solutions in the form of knowledge, decision-making tools and capacity. He has been working in the realm of sustainable urban local development, culture led development, place making, place management and urban heritage. He is interested in creating partnerships with people and institutions working in this realm. He has over 11 years of experience within the applied policy and planning domain of urban development. He holds a Master’s in Public Policy from National University of Singapore, Masters in Place Management from Manchester Metropolitan University and Bachelor in Economics from Delhi University.
Vidhya Mohankumar
Vidhya Mohankumar is an architect and urban designer with fifteen years of work experience in India, Ireland and the United States. Vidhya’s work is focused on creating urban spaces that are people-oriented and centred around transit as part of a sustainable development agenda that she is passionate about. In 2011, Vidhya founded Urban Design Collective (UDC), a collaborative platform for architects, urban designers and planners to create liveable and sustainable cities through community engagement. In 2015, she took on the role of Governing Board member with the US-based Center for the Living City. The Center was established in 2005 in collaboration with Jane Jacobs and with the purpose of enhancing the understanding of the complexity of contemporary urban life.