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Penn School of Arts and Sciences Monday, March 28, 2022

Moving Mountains: Weathering Climate Change and Land Politics in the Indian Himalaya

Ritodhi Chakraborty
March 28, 2022

In the latest issue of India in Transition, Ritodhi Chakraborty (Lecturer, Human Geography, University of Canterbury in Aotearoa New Zealand) argues that the Anthropocene in Uttarakhand cannot be understood without examining the historical and emerging power relations driving land use in the Indian Himalaya.

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This article is the third in a set of guest-edited IiT short series. The articles in this series seek to make sense of India’s multi-scalar response to climate crisis in four distinct ecological regions. India’s first-ever climate change assessment report, published in 2020, found that the intensity of droughts increased between 1951 to 2016 and that water stress, due to both flooding and loss of ground water, has exponentially risen over the previous decades. There is increasing pressure at the state and local municipal levels to come up with mitigation plans coupled with increasing global pressure on India to declare a zero-emission target. At the same time, on the ground-level, political, communal, and ethnic violence has increased in areas that are increasingly “disaster”-prone. This series will map how the effects of extreme weather are manifesting themselves as market-oriented transformations of the agrarian and forest economies, leading to various kinds of ethnic fissures and political violence around the question of land in the Ganga Brahmaputra region.
(Guest Editor: Debjani Bhattacharyya, History Department, University of Zürich)

CASI Welcomes Spring 2022 Visiting Fellow, Swagato Ganguly

Swagato Ganguly is a Consulting Editor for The Times of India, where he was an Editorial Page Editor from 2009-21. He is currently also a Research Affiliate at Lakshmi Mittal South Asia Institute, Harvard University and Adjunct Fellow, Gateway House.

CASI Student Programs

2019 CASI Summer Internship Alumna, Anjali Mahajan, Awarded Prestigious Thouron Award Anjali Mahajan, C'22 has been awarded a Thouron Award to pursue an MPhil in Comparative Social Policy at the University of Oxford. She is excited to continue her current line of research related to the political economy of harm reduction. Anjali's award was featured in the March 7, 2022 issue of Penn Today.

Applications for CASI's Sobti Family Fellowship and 2022 Summer Research Funds are NOW OPEN!

Sobti Family FellowshipThe Sobti Family Fellowship will provide a Penn doctoral student with $12,500 to develop independent research interests broadly related to CASI’s agenda. The award will include an unrestricted $10,000 grant with the addition of up to $2,500 in travel expenses, conference attendance fees, and research materials.

Summer Research FundsCASI will provide up to $4,000 to Penn undergraduate students and $5,000 to Penn graduate students for independent research projects related to contemporary India. We strongly encourage applications from undergraduate students working on senior theses and graduate students conducting and analyzing fieldwork for their capstone projects or dissertations.

Deadline for BOTH applications: Sunday, April 3, 2022 at 11:59pm EST

Subscribe to the CASI Student Programs Blog and read about students' experiences in India!

Questions about CASI Student Programs?
Please contact Laura Iwanyk, Assistant Director, CASI Student Programs and Outreach, liwanyk@upenn.edu

2021-22 CASI Virtual Seminar Series

March 31, 2022, 12 noon EDT | 9:30pm IST via Zoom

"Cultivating Democracy: Politics and Citizenship in Agrarian India"

CASI / South Asia Center / Penn Anthropology Book Talk with Mukulika Banerjee (The London School of Economics and Political Science)

April 7, 2022, 12 noon EDT | 9:30pm IST via Zoom

"Words Matter: Gender, Jobs, and Applicant Behavior"

CASI / South Asia Center Seminar with Kanika Mahajan (Ashoka University)

April 14, 2022, 12 noon EDT | 9:30pm IST via Zoom

"The Cold War’s Long Shadow: Indian Foreign Policy and the Current State of Play of Indo-Pacific Geopolitics"

CASI / South Asia Center / Center for the Study of Contemporary China / Perry World House Seminar with CASI Spring 2022 Visiting Fellow Swagato Ganguly (The Times of India)

Event Videos:

March 24, 2022: CASI Seminar "Marginal Interiors: Architecture, Space, and Governance in the Colonial Indian Mufassal" with Tania Sengupta (University College London) FULL VIDEO

March 17, 2022: CASI Book Talk "Ordering Violence: Explaining Armed Group-State Relations from Conflict to Cooperation" with Paul Staniland (University of Chicago) FULL VIDEO


VIEW VIDEOS of more CASI past events—Transcripts, English captions, Hindi subtitles available on select events

Campus Location

CASI's office is located close to the heart of Penn's campus at the Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics at 133 South 36th Street (Suite 230) Philadelphia, PA 19104-6215.

Please note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CASI is operating on a hybrid schedule.

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