Project Description


Mumbai Reader’17 is available for reference and purchase at UDRI Resource Centre.


The difficulty in representing Mumbai now is that there is always a feeling that such representations may fall into one of the several limitations of reading the city linearly. These limitations of linearity include making gross generalisations, or getting lost in seductive micro-narratives, or constructing incredible scenarios through meticulous empiricisms. While the generalisations strip the complexities of the city from the readings, the micro narratives are often myopic. Similarly, the approaches of using empiricisms are driven by preconceived agendas for problem solving.

Individually, the generalisations, micro narrations and the empiricisms are unable to capture the complexity of Systems, Organisations, and Space in the city. This impossibility of conceptualising the city warrants the need to read the city in multiple ways that simultaneously include an almost palimpsest like reading of all the approaches. To talk about the city then, would be to talk simultaneously in multiple disparate ways, in multiple languages and with multiple perspectives. The Mumbai Reader is an attempt to undertake a representation of the city that enables innumerable readings through a simultaneous and non-linear compilation of multiple voices in the city. The contents include some of the most recent perspectives on culture, economy, geography and history of the city. While it records the routine mainstream labour history and planning discourse types of writings; it also overlaps these with some of the current debates on absurdities that the city is faced with the issues relating to bar-dancers, changing of street names etc. The perspectives include voices from the bureaucracy, civil society organisations, academics, industry, judiciary, media, professionals, artists and many others. The Reader does not claim to be a comprehensive or an exhaustive compilation of readings on the city. It is rather an attempt to provide a glimpse of the complex dynamics of the city of Mumbai. The process of making this compilation was initiated through a call for papers made to a varied set of individuals in order to ensure an array of perspectives that would present to a reader diverse possibility of perceiving the city.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


  1. The Impatience of Genius Gautam Patel
  2. Mumbai in the Dock Darryl D’monte
  3. Life, Death, and Displacement on Mumbai’s Docks PUKAR
  4. A Peek at Government Plan to redevelop Mumbai’s 1,800-acre Docklands Smruti Koppikar
  5. As Government decides future of Mumbai and its Docklands, citizen voices go unheard Smruti Koppikar
  6. Mumbai Port Waterfront & Port Land Development Report Prepared by Mumbai Port Trust Land Development Committee
  7. Letter on Coastal Road UDRI
  8. That Sinking Feeling Nidhi Jamwal
  9. A tale of two cities : The similar story of Mumbai & Chennai floods Shalini Nair
  10. Chennai floods a grim reminder of what fate awaits Mumbai Clara Lewis
  11. Soon, new construction rules for flood-free Mumbai Shailesh Gaikwad
  12. Urban Rivers as ecological corridors in the city : Case of Mumbai city GRASSROOTS – Pallavi Latkar, Shruti Barve, Sagarika Damle, Nishith Dharaiya
  13. Material visions – Mumbai Development Plan 2034 and The Unfolding City Vyjayanthi Venuturupalli  Rao
  14. Fixing Mumbai: Beyond the DP / Sense and the City Shirish Patel & UDRI Team
  15. Smart Cities and the way we treat the poor Vidyadhar Date
  16. Of no fixed address: Mumbai’s street-dwellers are neither beggars nor destitute Kavitha Iyer
  17. No place for the poor Shanoor Seervai
  18. Draft Housing Policy – 1,2,3 Chandrashekar Prabhu
  19. No takers for over 1.5 lakh houses in Mumbai Sudhir Suryawanshi
  20. ‘Achhe Din’ for builders of luxury towers in Mumbai Nauzer Bharucha
  21. Now, SRA moots FSI bonanza for city builders Nauzer Bharucha
  22. Right to Housing Shailesh Gandhi
  23. Changes in slum population and living conditions of slum dwellers in Mumbai Vidya Yadav, R.B.Bhagat
  24. Water PIL Petition by Pani Haq Samiti & Ors.
  25. What I did with my 0.99 sq.m of Mumbai Alison Saldanha
  26. Breathless in Mumbai Anjali Lukose
  27. Kemp’s Corner flyover at 50 Shirish B. Patel
  28. Mumbai’s Underworld: Urban life beneath transport infrastructure Andrew Harris
  29. A city built of Data and the Networked Metropolis Keya Kunte
  30. Killing us softly? Shyama Kulkarni
  31. One Last Swirl Kunal Purohit
  32. Public Education in Mumbai Simantini Dhuru
  33. The State of Architecture: Practices and Processes in India Rahul Mehrotra
  34. UDRI Section