XXXX (2019) 

Forty eight final year students from the undergraduate programme of the School of Environment and Architecture (SEA) embarked on their dissertation research in May 2020. The global proliferation of  COVID-19 during the preceding months had led the Indian state to frame, at multiple scales, severe policing measures to partition space. These measures effected - or at least attempted to effect - a strict  quarantine for the circulation of individuals and objects. Concurrently, the harsh time of the virus also shaped conversations in India’s public sphere that intensified older readings of its society and space. These  readings are situated in pathological metaphors of production, community and proximity. Over the course of the last two years, SEA’s undergraduate dissertation programme has endeavored to open out new avenues for thinking about architectural production by drawing on critical scholarly research across the architecture, art and social science fields that complicates such readings. But what does it mean to complicate pathological readings of society and space in the time of a virus? And what philosophical avenues and actual methodological strategies may be opened out to pursue such critical scholarship in architecture when both the researcher and field interlocutors find themselves in quarantine?

In other words, what transgressions can architectural research make in working against the grain of visible and invisible partitions that society has built in a pandemic, and whose effects might be considered as a new normal beyond its time? These are the larger questions that loom over our heads and in our face as we engage in a discussion on the dissertations of the third cohort of SEA’s undergraduate students. Their scholarship cuts across diverse research areas: urban sensorium and mediatized environments; street and urban publics; beauty and culture in urban neighbourhoods; urban memories and elasticities, ecologies, associations and negotiations of home; claims of gendered bodies and social difference to space; interfaces of nature and society; pandemic spatialities and questions to pathological readings of the city.


 01 /  Of Temporalities 

> Architecture and Memory: Practice and Selfing of City spaces - Swaraj Dhuri

Post 90s, Indian cities have started growing through instances of Urban change. Urban change in the context of this dissertation are resettlement, rehabilitation, renewal and redevelopment cases in the city of Ahmedabad. These changes constantly reshape, repurpose, redevelop and renew the built form and consequently form a gap between the built form and life of the people. This gap creates a dialect of ‘what was’ and ‘what is’ that translates into “An act of remembering”. This act of remembering generates Memories that become mediums through which earlier pre-change city spaces are remembered and narrated.

In Design praxis, the Trope of memory is invoked as Nostalgia for re-creating and renewing the image of the Past. The initial enquiry was set from the gaps between the existing discourse that memory offers in space making acts. The first argument that this dissertation makes is that beyond the act of making and shaping, memory allows people to claim and inhabit certain spaces. Borrowing and building on works of Camillo Sitte, Aldo Rossi and Maurice Halbawachs, I’ve iterated space making acts as three factions: to remember, to make and to self.

Through this mapping of memory, the second argument made is that the spaces of selfing exist either in people’s pre-change landscape and are lost in their post change landscape or reduced in the same. There is an unconscious effort to reproduce the past practices in the new sites of settlement and new conditions of settlement.

The third argument is that remembering and selfing of city spaces happens through spaces that are outside the realm of the planned. These spaces are transitional spaces: in-between spaces, threshold spaces, temporal public spaces and intersections. Selfing happens through first, the projection of certain patterns and pracftices by the character and/or the nature of the space that lends itself for selfing. This study builds an approach that helps bridge the gap between the planned built form and life of people that Urban change fails to address in most cases.

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> Mechanics of Appropriation: Government HOusing Quarters - Megha Jhawar

What makes a home?

Putting this question in the context of public sector(government) housing, the notion of home seems questionable. In making the government employee housing there seems to be an effort to more or less make them standard houses. In large public sector employee housing, people come from a variety of contexts where houses are of different meanings. There is a friction between the standard house typology and the different ideas of home. This  creates a dynamic nature of life inside the quarters. The quarters are inhabited and reconfigured in a specific manner by each family. Since the employees and their families can only occupy the quarters till their term ends, there is a temporariness attached to the nature to inhabitation. Coming from different context, families inhabit and appropriate these standard houses in specific ways which may be ‘awkward’. This thesis a window to show how the people living in the government quarters appropriate and adapt to the space in a standard house and what space lends itself to be appropriated in the act of home-making. In this dissertation I argue that people living in the government quarter undertake a prolonged act of appropriation when they occupy astandard house form. One appropriates space based upon their needs and aspirations. It is usually tied to some aspect of people’s lives borrowing from their native place, the established routines, vastu shastra, the amount of space provided and one’s desire. As a result, appropriation take place in parts and on the elements of the house. Through the study I deduce some broad contours of appropriation seen in a standard house form which indicate the function and re-configuration of spaces, the use of structure for transformations and additions, the materiality of the objects and furniture used and the claim on the immediate outside spaces of the quarters. To conclude, it is a study to understand the mechanics in which one negotiates, adjusts, claims and moulds themselves to appropriate space and the nature of such space.

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> Body and Space - Astrid Fernandes

The focus on the implications of architecture over human body have led architects to concentrate on developing ways to control a body’s mood, movement and experience within it. Although if we consider it to be a cause and effect relationship, certain kind of spaces would bring about certain behaviour which intern would have its implications on that space. This thesis focuses to analyse these implications. Human behaviour is an interplay between cognition, emotion and actions. Out of which action is the only thing that can be observed directly. Therefore, in order to understand how different behaviours have different effects on space, I choose to look at bodies performing various acts while in the “Act of waiting”. The sites I have chosen are waiting areas like the waiting hall at a railway station, a hospital waiting room and a labour junction where people wait for jobs of daily wages. The different acts performed while waiting produce either sense of porosity or boundary, hence defining the way others navigate through that space. This is then analysed by creating diagrams of space influenced by movement, seen through the lens of the concept developed by William Forsythe considering movement to be intangible, felt space that comes to define our experiences and comprise invisible lines between the bodies and space.

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> House Forms in Urban Transition : New Temporalities of Sociability and Entreprenuership - Aurea D’Cruz

I come from Vasai, which is a place with a unique character. Being born and brought up here, I’ve grown up listening to stories from elders about how life was lived earlier here. The character of a place is largely shaped by the nature of the men and women who have lived there, the structures they have dwelt in, the values they have upheld,  and the firm yet ever-changing cultural ethos that has forged ahead through its generations. Nestled close to Mumbai, Vasai comes across as a reluctantly developing town. It holds on to its rich historical importance as a strategic Portuguese port, its spiritual vibrancy, and its breath-taking natural beauty. Furthermore Vasai as a whole can be described as divided, between and country and the city.

Vasai exhibits a sense of fast development from rural, farmlands to a built urban context. In this process built form 0and relationships are transforming. Along with preserving points of reference and anchorage to the history and culture, there is also a need to gain more and change for better. Amidst this transformation the inhabitants of vasai seem to reflect a sense of loss and opportunity. The opportunity is of adapting to new forms entrepreneurship and the loss is of that of social space. This thesis focuses on understanding different ways architects can address this new temporalities of Entrepreneurial interest and social interest intersected in the exhisting builtforms of houses.

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> Hurriedness - Deves Uniyal

A quick cup of coffee/cutting chai is gulped and people have breakfast standing on the road at a fast-food stall before reporting to work. On the station one dashes in haste to get aboard a local train which will be followed in five minutes by another. These as well as in several other subtler instances in cities like Mumbai, one experiences a sense of urgency. This gets explicitly realized when a person moves, either from one city to another or within a city from one place to another.

The thesis starts on the hypothesis that, people in cities experience hurriedness and In different places, different level of hurriedness isexperienced. Based on this hypothesis, the study is an exploration of Hurriedness as a framework for evaluating space and people’s relationships in cities. The thesis argues that the hurriedness generated by the city, demands from the city a peculiar type of spatial character. This character is a function of four broad characteristics - fragmentation of built form, Mix-use/layering of programs, Overlaps & blur in ownership and Temporality. It is through these spatial characteristics that hurriedness can be sustained.

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> Storyspace - Ria Das

Story becomes space and spaces become stories. There is interdependence between them and have a dialectical relationship. Spaces get produced through interaction of stories and stories get produced through interaction of space. Hence, this thesis is titled ‘Storyspace’.

Spaces hold the power to transport people in time by virtue of invoking memory and emotion that have specific associational registers. In living space, people translate them into stories living is not  merely a linear process, it is inherently layered and complex. Stories allow this translation to happen easily through narratives. This thesis aims to understand architecture as narrative that spatializes itself which we come to inhabit through experience and further understanding the mechanics of storytelling. Therefore, I try to establish a relationship between the narrative and space/s by studying four basic forms of the narrative, which are commonly used to tell a story.

Using this research, I will be looking at ‘storyspace’ and what other kinds of connections are formed along with studying the factors that affect the relationship between a narrative and a space. In order to represent this interrelated, complex and layered relationship, I will use the mode of diagramming.

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 02 /  Thresholds 

> Land - Water Interface - Gautami Kasat

“ How have the architectural interventions along the land-water edge of Godavari in Nasik responded to the river ecology, its surrounding built-form and the key activities governing that place ?”

Over the years, architectural responses have visualized the land-water edge as hard-edge conditions. Under the smart city scheme, various riverfront projects have started coming up along the banks of the Godavari river in Nasik. Most of the projects are imagined as hard-edge riverfront schemes. Such conditions are not only happening in Nasik but in Ahemdabad (Sabarmati Riverfront), Pondicherry (Seaside promenade), Varanasi (Assi Ghat) and many more cities residing along water edges. For this dissertation, I recognize that new imaginations of the waterfront redevelopment across cities predominantly envision the land-water interface as a hard edge. However, there exist a wide range of land-water edge conditions whose architecture is important to understand towards developing an ecological approach for this interface. Thus the aim of this dissertation is to analyse the interplay between ecology, built-form and everyday activities along a river’s land-water interface and to explore the role of architecture in responding to such vulnerable conditions.

To begin with my research, I chose six cases along the stretch of Godavari. The cases travel the course of the river as it enters the city and ends as the river starts exiting the city. The sites are Ganesh Gaon, Savargaon, Navshaya Ganpati temple, Riverfront Jogging Track, Ram Kund and Tapovan. All the sites vary in terms of architectural responses to the water edges. They range from being agricultural villages, vineyards, temple ghats and riverfront parks.

Every case was documented in terms of ecology, built-structures and the culture of the place. To establish my parameters for ecological mapping I draw from Anne Sprin’s theory of the structure of natural processes in a space and map the cases with respect to terrain and water, soil and soft grounds and variation in vegetation. Building on Anthony Acciavatti’s theory of juxtaposing built parameters with unbuilt to map a river, I document the built environment with respect to roads, built structures and the hardness of the land-water edge conditions on-site. People’s activities are traced to set the tone of everyday activity governing the place.

A comparative study between all the cases helped me to establish a relationship between ecology, built-form and everyday activities of a place. With the reduction in soft ground cover, the built-form of the place increases and vice versa. With the reduction in variation of vegetation along the land- water edge of the river, hardline edge conditions amplify and vice versa. When the terrain of a place is altered without considering water flow and water percolation, architectural responses along the edge fail. Thus I conclude that the negotiations between the three parameters are not symbiotic. An increase in one leads to a reduction in other and vice versa. This argument sets the tone in thinking about how a sustainable design model along such vulnerable edges could be thought of. A model aiming to balance ecology and built-form while responding to the cultural logic to the place. The end argument which this dissertation puts forth is to explore the following design question : What could the architectural response of recreation, work and tourism be, along the land-water edge of the Godavari river in Nasik? How could a sustainable design model be demonstrated in such a context?

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> Living in a Forest - Divya Bhat

Studied during the active protests against the forceful state-directed erasure of the Aarey forest cover in north Mumbai during April 2019, this thesis aims to document and understand the types of human habitation within
different sections of this ecologically sensitive environment. Mumbai is one of the few cities in the world that accommodates a forest right within it. After the formation of Mumbai, a lot of the existing settlements inside these forests relocated themselves to other parts of the city whereas, a few stayed back. Most of the forests areas were taken over to build infrastructure and housing for the growing population by the city authorities. Due to this, the forest cove rof Mumbai has dropped from 35% in the 1970s to just 13% today.

Currently, a patch of the Aarey forest is being cleared for a metro carshed. While such projects are inserted into the city by surgically removing the forest cover, one needs to invest in ways of carefully articulating the edge
of the forest and the city. By studying the older settlements alongside the newer developments along the edge of the forest and the city, the thesis aims to compare the contrasting forms of living, and hopes to articulate methods in which eco-sensitive edges can be intervened architecturally. The research identifies three distinct built form typologies which are common inside as well as on the edge of the forest. The documentation was primarily done to understand their spatial configuration and the way they interact with the  forest.

This research, therefore, tries to understand as to how do we reimagine the aspect of co-living between the settlements and the forest? How do we exist in resonance with the environment? Can modern development be less invasive in negotiating with the environment? How do we see a city in the forest ratherthan a forest in the city?

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> Life Resettled - Vibhavari Sarangan

Deonar lies on Mumbai’s north eastern edge and has housed one of Asia’s largest dump yards for almost century. Ironically, this also houses one of Mumbai’s largest, densest resettlement projects.Over the last 50 years starting with a bid to ‘clean up’ the city’s housing conundrum in the 1970s and later to help clear the path for new infrastructure projects in the early 2000s -a large population has been made to move en-masse, from various parts of the city, to be housed in these resettlement projects, which were planned and implemented by the government.Shivaji Nagar, which lies on the edge of the dump– has witnessed two waves of resettlement. The first wave was in the 1970s, which saw people move into plots of land allocated to them resulting in an informal development, while the second wave in the 2000s, resettled ‘homeless street dwelling families’ into densely packed apartment blocks.

The above two resettlement projects will be studied in this thesis because of the differences in their builtforms and the differences in relations and networks forged by the people inhabiting the two kinds of spaces. The first scheme allowed a certain relationship to be formed between its’ spatiality and the social structure of its’ inhabitants; while the second scheme, throws up a whole new set of opportunities and constraints, by allowing people to form social orders and relationships. The spatialities of the resettlement projects have enabled the inhabitants to settle in particular ways and this study hopes to detail out the specific aspects that bring about a sense of social coherence in both these schemes.

Therefore, this thesis aims to establish a juxtaposition of the older plotted resettlement scheme versus the recent, “standard” apartment type resettlement scheme, through specific aspects, questions, theoretical concepts and through the experiences- of the work, leisure, time taken to settle and make a home and therefore the lives - of the residents of both projects – with an aim to develop strategies that are relevant for resettling families and therefore easing the act of ‘settling’.

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 03 /  Technotopias 

> Technosocieties in te early second millennium - Danna Denise DeSouza

Today we see the effects of the consumption of virtual media seep into our interactions with each other as well as dictate the physical space around us. Not only are the utilities of spaces of sociability shifting but also are the physicality of their designs.

This thesis aims at understanding the change in the interiority of physical space due to advent of virtuality and documenting them over a course of the past 30 years. Focussing over three domains of daily life; work, living and lei- sure, an attempt is made to pinpoint how virtual media is allowing for domestication of technology on various scales.

Using this research, I will look at how the interiority of physical space will begin to change keeping in mind the constant development of technology and how this will in turn change and create new ideas and spaces for sociability.

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> Screened Spaces - Eshan Pradhan

Over the last three decades, the increasing presence of the internet and screen devices have taken over our everyday lives. This phenomenon has silently altered the physical nature of our built environments. Within this domain, the aspect of leisure and recreation that was primarily related to physical activity and consumption of “green” environment has obliquely diverged into the interior. By studying specific cases mapping this transition, one aims to understand the implicit disposition of this change.

The thesis focuses on the morphing typology of the photocopying center in the urban environment that evolved into the gaming parlours. The architectural nature of such parlours shapes the banal interiors of work spaces and emerge into new recreational forms within the city. The increase in virtuality has led to compaction of space and in turn an amalgamation of different programs in a single space, generating a new form of typology. I will also be looking at how space is configured for the virtual realm.

The work indicates that while the screens have taken over the everyday realm of work and leisure, its architectural expression is still largely unsettled. This remains as a great opportunity for architects to mould the screened spaces into more interesting spalities.

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 04 /  Power & Play 

> Tracing play : Across educational compuses - Nirmohi Katrecha

How does 'play' nuance the ideas of 'self' which are manifested within the spatial structures of university campuses? University campuses direct one's way of conduct on the grounds of regulation and standardisation of knowledge. This is manifested spatially within the campus. However, over time, these frameworks start exerting control and conditioning one's conduct.

In this dissertation, I study how the conduct of an individual is shaped spatially, and how, through one's individual agency, these structures are subverted. The fieldwork studies the power-embedded spatialities of six university campuses, across three cities in India. The initial study aims to critically look at the aspects of control that are played out at different scales on these campuses. It also aims to draw out the instances of disciplining within the campus through the nature of its built form. Further, it focuses on the ruptures within the institutional framework that are created due to individual user patterns. These ruptures are what I term as spatialities of play. The sense of play opens up possibilities to provoke and trigger the existing frameworks within an institutional campus. The study opens up the nuances of play that one encounters and/or carries out which lead to the subversion, narrowing it down to a manifesto. The aspects of wonder, discretion, solitude, etc. that are born out of user appropriation are analysed spatially through this manifesto. 'A Player 's Manifesto' tries to provoke the ways in which these spatialities of play can be further instrumentalized in institutional environments

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> Gateway of fear : Jash Gohil

This project ‘Gateways of Fear’ investigates how particular large scale urban infrastructure like airports induce a sense of fear in human beings. An airport is the primary gateway (for the “foreigner”) to a place, and often due to its scale it is rather intimidating – both in program as well as its architecture. I have chosen to focus on the Mumbai Airport (Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal, CSIA) as a representative for many others that have been designed in a similar manner across

India (as well as the world). Also, I have a personal experience of feeling severely constrained and being self-conscious at airports. My research is based on the analysis of nature of infrastructure networks of an airport and its impact on humans. I am looking at different experiences created by several thresholds, which become the link between fear and human behaviour. I identified four aspects that generate fear; space, body, social structure and technology. The goal is to make people aware about the invisible forces that construct a sense of fear. As an architecture student, I explore how these different forces work together in a large space like the airport, hence, how architects can be more conscious in creating empathetic environment. I am trying  to find possibilities of negotiation with scale in order to humanise such large spaces.

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> Of institutions; Of discipline : Prachi Kosadia

What is the spatiality of institutions that tends to discipline the mind and control the behaviour of people?

Disciplining of the mind and hence the behavior is a strategy of power used to maintain social order within the city. The city often sets up different kind of organizations in order to condition the minds of people under the name of institutions for the welfare of the people. Institutionalization is a process in which a certain pattern of behavior is set within an organization or community. Understanding the spatiality of these institutions- Erving Goffman in his article Characteristics of Tota Institutions, mentions different kinds of total institutions. Taking that as a basis I have selected six institutions as cases in different parts of Mumbai to examine for ways in which they exert power. This is done through an understanding of typology, accessibility, scale, circulation/ movement, programmatic organization, hierarchical organization, surveillance, light and ventilation in each of the cases.

De Certeau in his book The Practice of Everyday life mentions that, “A tactic is determined by the absence of power just as a strategy is organized by the postulation of power.” These tactics become resistances to the power which helps one escape the discipline for some time. Using this operative concept, the thesis examines how people in these various institutions escape the clutches of power. The thesis argues that tactics used to subvert power could be used as a design strategy to diffuse power in these institutions.

As a test case, the next stage of the thesis would take up the Government mental hospital in Thane. Currently some of the older wards are being demolished and newer wards are made to take in more inmates. So re-designing some of the wards which could be used as models to develop other wards in the campus.

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 05 /  On Difference 

> Gendering of Public Space : Shivani Dave

More often than not, people tend to organize themselves in a space, based on their social group, familiarity to one another, and comfort in that space. This organization, or social form, is affected by a number of factors, one of which is gender.

Gender, simply, is an awareness of one’s own body. It is a person’s internal sense of self, largely influenced by their family, society and surrounding environment. Each body, with its own social and cultural context, will experience space differently. My interest in doing this research arises from the awareness and slight frustration I have from personal experiences that dictate how I conduct myself in certain spaces. Certain implicit rules of behavior in public spaces, actions of self-surveillance and discipline, are imparted to anyone growing up to be a “respectable” woman.

“Appropriate” rules regarding dressing, talking and moving in everyday spaces are memorized by us, and go on to dictate how much freedom we exercise in these spaces. While everyone may be indifferent towards gendering on various levels, effects of gendering are largely felt by women navigating public spaces, influencing how we behave in the same. These behaviors generally arise from being uncomfortable in spaces, due to the dominating presence of one gender group. Through various experiences of our own, and that of our mothers and peers, we adopt different methods of using spaces.

This dissertation aims to understand how women perceive, navigate and occupy spaces that we frequent. Through field studies of street markets, municipal markets and shopping malls, it further aims to disclose the various configurations women tend to use these spaces in.

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> Unscripting the home : Women making space in the city - Ankita Dhal

How do women make home in the city? An increased migration of women has been observed in the recent past within the country, especially to cities. It’s crucial to understand how women make home in the city as gender forces us to look at the home space very differently. It makes us challenge and redefine all assumptions created about building a home through a gender neutral perspective. It has deep implications on our individualities and the way we interact with space. How does the gender role of being a woman and its subsequent social scripting affect the way women go through home-making processes? Through the fieldwork, I mapped various kinds of places and social structures that women face, when they come to the city. The aim is to understand what kind of conditioning and imaginations women have when they venture out through personal and vulnerable conversations. How do they challenge these historicised gender roles and limitations of patriarchy to gain agency and claim space?

The first argument of the thesis is that there is a relationship between gender roles and home-making. This is explained through various comparative analysis of both men and women’s experiences in home-making. For the man, interactions happen outside the confines of the home. For women, the domain of the home is crucial—for privacy, her individual and community life, and even for her entrepreneurial needs. As the everyday life and chores related to the household remain attached to women’s identities, they find ways of navigating the spaces differently.

The second argument is that there is a relationship between women, home-making, and the city. The need for women to build a home in the city stems from the fact that it opens up avenues that were previously inaccessible to them. Historically, women have been restricted to certain zones of access. In towns and provincial cities, the women are not able to freely move out of their homes or within their homes. Hence, home-making particularly in city space or the urban areas provides an opportunity to expand their zone of access, saving themselves from long-term patriarchal limitations and restrictions.

The third argument is that there are additional layers to home-making owing to the gender role of women. These additional hurdles arise only when women try to make home.

The fourth argument is that space-making through home-making for women is a long and tedious process.

The fifth argument is that women making homes are able to create fractures/hideouts in patriarchal spaces.

Finally, home-making in a city becomes a means of liberation for women. All of these are tied through an analysis to understand the ease of home-making for women by comparing various kinds of household structures and homemaking processes. A support infrastructure along with new equitable ways of providing housing for women needs to exist that promotes space acts of claiming, respite, community building, amenities, recreation, transgressions etc., so women don’t have to fracture patriarchal space but instead find hideouts or rescues within the city infrastructure itself.

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> Class and Space - Sagar Gurav

There are many industrial sectors which help in running the economy of India, of which there are two major sectors which are Liquor and Real Estate. As pursuing architects our study revolves around this Real Estate sector and the architecture in it. Real Estate sector is developing rapidly over the last few years, is rapidly affecting the price of land. In a city like Mumbai the land prices here are increasing limitlessly which makes it harder for any average earning person to buy a house, but every habitat always aspires a house bigger than their present house ,however money(Income) restricts them to do so, being a resident of this city it has always affected(In terms of income) me and my family ,which developed my interest for this study.

Karl Marx in his book of ‘Theory of class struggle’ and also in a few of the article written about his theory, he has stratified class on the basis of occupation, this was one perspective, I also wanted to know the governments perspective on stratification of class. Through this literature review I developed a analytical framework which stratified people not only on the basis of their income but also on the basis of their present infrastructure, this helped me in my site study. The site study gave me a average housing aspiration per income category, through which I concluded that every household aspiration of an household of all economic classes is to fulfill the Need of an additional space in terms of a room that they presently do not have. This research tries look at affordable housing that allows for incrementality.

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 06 /  Enterprise 

> Neighbourhoods as Networks - Divya Agarwal

Mumbai sheher hain yeh. Kuch bhi ho sakta hain idhar.

Framed against the contemporary backdrop of the large, master-planned urban renewal schemes and housing redevelopment projects in Mumbai that often displace people or remain incomplete for long time periods. I propose to explore how the lens of networks of work and living shape workbased neighbourhoods contributes to our understanding of them. Growing up in a work-based neighbourhood of Grant Road introduced me to the efficiency of these spaces in Mumbai.

I have chosen to conduct case studies of four work-based neighbourhoods in Mumbai viz., Colaba Koliwada based on fishing activity of the indigenous community, Jogeshwari tabela based on milk production, Zaveri Bazaar based on bullion trade and manufacturing and Coalsa Bunder based on small-scale ship-breaking activities. The geographies of each of the case studies is different from the other.

I advance three arguments through this dissertation. First, shift from a ‘container’ understanding to a relational understanding. Second, how the shifts of economies have occurred over time. Third, clearing of the ‘mess’ of
these neighbourhoods also loses its dense networked patterns. I propose to explore the implications of seeing the neighbourhood as a series of overlapping networks in understanding them and framing relevant questions in their realm. It will also help the residents get a different perspective of urban renewal schemes.

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> Emerging Entreupreneurship and its Spatiality - Foram Desai

When an individual starts owning machinery and hiring labour in a piece of land to produce goods or service an Enterprise is formed. Through history, enterprises have evolved. Looking back at post industrialisation period, there were large production houses e.g. Textile Mills which carried out all the processes to convert cotton to cloth. These broke down to fragmented production units where only one or two processes took place. Eventually, the investments of land, structure and other resources needed to build these small production units were increasing. Hence, Industrial Estates emerged which had pre-built galas with shared resources. When technology like computers, soft data-keeping, soft marketing etc was integrated into the enterprises, service sector started booming. As a response to this boom, front offices in tall glass buildings emerged. In this evolution, the nature of enterprise i.e. its organisational form transformed which reflected in its spatiality i.e. the spatial form.

In current times, new enterprises are emerging every year. In past 5 years, a shift in the nature of enterprises is seen. They are moving towards creative fields which are influenced by social media. New organisational forms and spatial forms are emerging. However, these enterprises adapt to the existing space and there is less or no spatial equivalence. This study aims at understanding the new organisational and spatial forms which can help to speculate the architecture that the new enterprise is demanding.
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> Trasitional Sociability - Ami Joshi

Urban villages have been undergoing transformations due to shifts in the economic activities of the villages. These shifts bring with them a demand for new configurations in the builtform of the village, changing the house form and its associated public spaces. This changes the sociability of the village.

In the context of urban fishing villages in Mumbai, these changes in the sociability fracture the relationships of the people within the community by disrupting the delicate relationship between the built form and open space. It does so by altering the hierarchy of the spaces within the settlement, allowing the new built form to take over the available common spaces. The common spaces in a fishing village not only facilitate its everyday activities, but also become spaces for their communal symbiotic relationship to flourish.

With the setting up of the co-operative, the ice factory and the cold storage in Versova village, the daily functioning of fishing and its allied activities have become mechanical, minimising the required time investment and presence of the community, reducing it further with migrant labour being available to work on the boats. This, along with the individuality of the emerging G+3 builtform typology, has disintegrated the sociability of the village, and hence, the community.

Through this thesis I aim to establish the importance of sociable spaces in urban villages. In order to do so, the study incorporates the comparison of two fishing villages at different stages of transformation- Versova Koliwada, largely transformed builtform; and Bhati Koliwada, a settlement functioning as per the older way of communal living. Through readings of ‘Social space and Structuralism’ by Herman Hertzberger, the study begins to establish patterns of sociability offered in these cases.

Through the study of living patterns in both the settlements, it was clear that the transformed house forms disrupt the everyday sociability of the people; the industrial logic of the ice factory and the working of the co-operative leaves little room for the people to actively partake in the everyday functioning,making their activities mechanical. The aim of the thesis is to argue for a change in the way these transformations occur, and to rethink the typology of the builtform to incorporate spaces of sociability at different scales in the neighbourhood, as was seen in the older contexts. It identifies the demand for a house form that recognises the needs and aspirations of the people for the transformations, considering the shifting economies, while laying importance to the series and hierarchy of open spaces and their relationship to the builtform.

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 07 /  Material & Phenomenon 

> The space of detail - Gaurav Edwankar

In architecture, detail is looked at as a simple junction where two or more materials meet, a junction where there is a material separation, a point that breaks continuity and an element that can make the whole built vulnerable if not taken care of. The aesthetic of a design is considered as the experience driving elements of a space. There is a need to understand the complexity, detail plays in an architectural form. To explore this understanding of how detail is the primary contributor to the experience of space and a small part in relation to a larger whole. The research is placed itself in the context where detail is looked through the lens of technique, function, expression and tactile experience.

This dissertation is a research on understanding how architectural details shape the experience of a space. Articulation of elements, how they come together to form a component and the assemblage of these components creates details. Materiality and functionality contribute to the tactile and tectonic experience of space. Changing the elements of a component that governs a detail, potentially changes the spatial experience of built architecture for those who occupy it.The research aims to grab attention to how details get generated and how they help breakdown architecture and its spatial experiences. The obiective of the research is to understand how details help in shaping the spatial experience of a space and to achieve this objective, libraries were taken as the case. The idea is to compare a set of libraries which are situated at places which are different in culture, history, geography, and economy. These parameters don't change the program but change the architecture of the program. The cases chosen for the exploration were Maya Somaya Library of Sharda School situated at Kopargaon, Maharashtra, Lilavati Lalbhai Library, CEPT University Ahmedabad, Gujarat, Auroville Library Auroville, Tamil Nadu, Madras Literary Society Library Chennai, Tamil Nadu and Connemara Public Library Chennai Tamil Nadu. Through these cases, I establish a relationship between details and the spatial experience that is created by them.

What I observe in all the explorations in terms of functionality, the way in which the details of all of these buildings have been thought about are through fixity and permeance. Flexibility has been explored very little in terms of details and whatever it has been explored is a very limited scope. There is a programmatic context to the library that requires flexibility with respect to structure, lighting, ventilation, and program.

Therefore, my design question is how can details contribute to the architecture of flexibility in a public library building.

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> Material Compositions - Radha Iyer

This thesis aspires to understand the idea of materiality and the experience that a material produces through its physical properties. Material was never distinct from its emotion in history where people did not disassociate the phenomenological properties of materials with their physical properties and this is a fundamental split that modernity brings to us. However, the idea of material and its compositions does not just limit to the complimenting nature of different materials coming together. As a symbolic expression, it becomes a medium through which conceptions of people, their living and environment are seen to constantly alter and evolve. Just like different musical notes amalgamate to create a symphony, different materials attempt to weave together to create a composition. With an attempt to open out all these parameters, this thesis is titled as ‘material compositions’. This study decides to understand the manifestation of materiality in its experience through architecture colleges because these are places where we are made aware of our consciousness, and our bodies are well sensitized towards the external environment. The argument generated here as a whole tries to question configurations or associations for the design of a space and re- build associations for improved design that could be equally effective.

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> Architecture of shaded spaces - Dirgh Kakadia

After a rigorous site study and analysis of the cases and the conditions of these cases, I have understood a lot related to the shade and its use in a vicinity. The cases of the vicinity had a different level of intensity in terms of the utility of shaded leftover spaces. As an architecture student we have studied the housing scenarios in different states of the country. The cases discussed in this book are one such and one of the scenarios. Here in this book the study talks about how shade and light quality influences and shapes the daily activities of the inhabitants of Ghodapdeo, Byculla East. With a base study of the works and writings of Architect Charles Correa and Louis Kahn, the inferences are laid which become the base for this research study. I understood how the lack of space inside the house, which leads to the increased dependance on the oustside space. I understood how shade and light together create experiences of spaces and how built form and its configuration influences the configuration of these shaded spaces. These influenced shaded spaces further shapes the space utility of the inhabitants. This experience and utility gives meaning to a space and hence derives a sense of utility.

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 08 /  Producing Public 

> Architecture of Repose - Rushabh Dedhia

Open spaces are an integral part of the city. In the city, almost everyone interacts with some form of open space in their everyday. There are efforts by planning authorities to increase the ratio of open space to people. Whenever some sort of relaxation or leisure time is talked about, it can be easily related to open spaces. In
the intensity of life within the city when stress or anxiety is generated, there is an association with open spaces.

In this research, I try to understand what is the relationship between open space and the users. In what ways people perceive, experience and inhabit different types of open spaces in the city. What are the affordances of different types of open spaces. Whether these open spaces help in releasing stress/ anxiety or do they actually
generate it. I acknowledge the research of psychoanalysts who claim, open spaces help in releasing stress and anxiety with the nature and environment of that space. To understand the generation of anxiety and stress, I refer to Anthony Vidler, Rem Koolhaas and Siegfried Kracauer who talk about how modernity has generated strange spaces that completely disassociate people from them. I hypothesize that, various characteristics of open spaces along with different conditions and factors either generate or relieve stress/ anxiety among the user of that space. This relation also depends upon the association of that space each individual has towards it.

I address the study through narratives and diagrams of eight different types of open spaces and their users in the city of Mumbai. The inference of the thesis states three broad understandings of this relation in open spaces in the form of: environment, regulations and users of the space. It is observed that users prefer natural environment for repose. The city requires open spaces that are qualitative in nature and consider the psychological aspects for users. Appropriation of space depends on the proximity and class orientation of user.

The question it generates for architecture is, can there be a form of open space that offers a multiplicity of programs, scales, intersectionality, class and human engagement to exist in the everyday of the city?

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> Interpretative capacities of builtform - Shachi Shah

The image of any built form is often associated with the intent (in terms of the function) it was built with. This provides for a limited imagination of the space. However, there are certain kinds of forms that allow one to imagine or be multiple ‘selves’ and do multiple things. For any space to have such an image, it requires to be seen in various different ways. Spaces which allow the most involvement and interaction between people and elements are ‘Public Spaces’. Hence, for the purpose of this thesis, I chose to specifically look at Public spaces. The capacity of built form to appear in multiple stories and allow multiple ways of seeing it is what I call, its ‘Interpretative Capacity’. What is imagination of space? And how does the imagination occur? The triggers that cause and/or influence imagination have been explored through broader ideas of ‘Analogons’ and the idea of ‘The Self’. Using these as tools, this thesis aims at understanding their relationship with the interpretative capacity of built form and hence being able to develop strategies where public spaces are able to accommodate and hold multiple people and their imaginations. Further, through these concepts, 3 spaces, Bandra fort, Worli fort and Shivaji Park have been evaluated in terms of their architectural differences, the different activities taking place on site and the built form affording those activities. Through a series of unstructured interviews, ideas of certain imaginations have been put together. Through the analysis of these public spaces, key characteristics of the built form that determine the interpretative capacity of it, have been derived. Higher the interpretative capacity, higher the number of imaginations possible.

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 09 /  Housing and Living 

> Spaces of Interplay : Between te planned and te lived in ouse environments - Saniya Ranade

The city of Mumbai is a vast landscape of various housing typologies. I have experienced living in a chawl and an apartment. Being a part of both, I was able to notice differences in behavioral patterns of people. The same set of people would behave differently; their body language and actions would differ too after moving to the apartment. I wasn’t able to grasp what exactly was happening. If the people are the same then what is changing? It led me to the realization that there was something the space itself was doing which was causing these changes. This aroused my interest in understanding how space lets certain things happen or triggers certain movements, behaviors and activities.

Following up on that experience, this thesis aims at understanding spaces of housing and delves into the muddle of what it is that the space itself is doing.

Through the field studies of a wadi, a singly loaded chawl, a doubly-loaded chawl and an apartment which are the formal housing typologies in Mumbai, the thesis argues that the configuration of architectural elements affects the affordance of those elements. Affordance here, through the readings of Gibson, is defined as something that the space offers the animal i.e. what the space can let you do in it. The thesis further introduces the idea of interplay as the effect two spaces tend to have on each other and examines whether the various spaces i.e. unit, corridor, open space, staircase and boundary of the site engage in an interplay with other spaces or not and how that affects the affordance of those spaces. Spaces of high interplay, the thesis concludes, are observed to be generating a new way of life and new programs.

Hence affordance and interplay act as tools to bridge the gap between the planned and lived. The thesis further argues that the concepts of affordance and interplay can be used to shift the prevalent discussion in the context of housing in India, from standards and affordability, to the discussions on lived experience of space.

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> Co-operative Redevelopments - Chinmay Gawade

This thesis aims at understanding how everyday social life and sense of community transforms post redevelopment of co-operative housing societies in Mumbai's suburbs. The housing crisis and the Maharashtra co-operative societies act of 1960 led to extensive development of co-operative housing societies throughout the city, bringing people together to build housing thereby inherently creating a rich sense of community within the residents.

Redevelopments of these societies as observed on site are driven by economic profits to the residents and the developer and regulatory processes of FSI, TDR thereby giving less attention to the social spaces of the society. Such redevelopments lead to a decrease in intensity of everyday social interactions and transforms the community.

Using Jan Ghel's conceptual framework (social activities are resultant of optional stivities which only take place in favorable surroundings) this thesis aims at understanding how built form affects social life by testing the older built form and the redeveloped built form. To do so two redeveloped societies and one older society, were chosen. The sites selected are then studied under the parameters of scale, density, hierarchy of public spaces, movement patterns, and visual connectivity to understand how built form affects social life.

It was observed through the analysis that the new typology is unfavorable for social activities to take place and degrades the community life. The thesis argues that in the current context of suburban redevelopments and its future this newer built form needs to be rethought, incorporating some of the patterns that constituted social spaces from the older built form and understanding the needs of the future residents.

While some of the redevelopments have taken place due to the incentives given to developers, many urban neighbourhoods such as those studied in Borivali are facing a genuine need for redevelopment due to aging and dilapidation. This sets up the design question as to how could this other monetized form of redevelopment be re-imagined through its lived relations? To be demonstrated this the next stage of the thesis would like to take up the redevelopment of one such dilapidated housing society in the. neighbourhood, using some of the learnings in this stage.

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> Handmade Urbanism : The case of Eksar - Vinisha Kuckian

India, like many other developing countries has seen massive influx of population into its cities coupled with urban expansion. Urban villages are widespread  in many parts of the city, providing adequate, affordable and accessible housing for migrants. These urban villages are developed by the indigenous village population based on a self-help approach and in an unauthorized style.

Consequently, urban villages are characterized by rapid physical development. While a substantial amount of study of such informal settlements has been undertaken, they remain largely unstudied in terms of urban form and its transitional development. This paper focuses on examining the development patterns and their effects on social life and activities within Eksar village in Mumbai.

In this study, a framework has been set forth which considers the context in which the informality takes place; the urban village itself; the housing contained within; the dwellers of those houses and their life form/pattern and the processes through which the village has been designed and transformed overtime. By linking the development pattern of the city, the physical and socio-economic evolution of urban villages is found to be a result of natural response of the indigenous village population and migrants in facing rapid economic development and social transition.

However, urban villages are neglected by policy makers and face either aggressive demolition to replace them with formal neighbourhoods or massive unauthorized and unmonitored development done by the residents itself. The urban villages contain people belonging from various economic strata’s of the society who also have a certain sense of attachment towards the place, which is why the redevelopment policy doesn’t seem to be fit and fair towards them. Therefore as the demolition-redevelopment approach would prove to be devastating, this study explores various other opportunities such as upgrading and providing guideline’s for policy making associated with urban village development.

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> Housing, Efficiency and Equity - Akash Vishwakarma

Listening to the everyday conversation about the comparison between slum and apartment building from the people you’re surrounded by seems unfair. The way in which the people are misled to choose apartment building over slum depends largely on the architecture of the area. The dissertation thus tries to define what is the relationship between efficiency and equity with built form. Identifying the different type of built-form into the major types; slum, chawl and apartment, the study tries to identify the best architectural solution for built-form which provide higher efficiency and equity.

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 10 /  Humanising Infrastructure 

> Humanising Infrastructure - Aakash Bhanushali

Over time cities have consolidated their neighbourhoods when new infrastructure is built to respond the requiring city conditions and often they don’t function with the neighbouring context. These are designed to function for a singular purpose which often fails to identify the multiple spatialities, the form and the characteristics of an infrastructure offers. Due to this, the infrastructure and the space it occupies remains dead and disruptive. The designs of the infrastructures de-humanise the space they occupy and the landscape becomes grey.

This work looks at the public infrastructure like flyovers and pedestrian subways in the city and analyses their spatial characteristics such as form, activities, movements, scale and materiality. This analysis is undertaken to understand the spatiality that makes the infrastructure disruptive and dehumanising. The work aims at developing public infrastructure that is less disruptive and sustains the urbanity of the place.

The methods used for the analysis is to sustain sociability, performability, inclusiveness and dynamic quality of place-making with respect to their spatiality of the neighbourhood. This will help on how the design of a flyover/ subway can be humanised with its spatial characteristics. The main question for the research is: - What will be the spatial form of a flyover/ subway which is humanised for the neighbourhood? The thesis aims at developing functions to answer the question.

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> Food and Street : Infrastructure for the city - Hetvi Lapasia

How do Infrastructure of food, shape the experience of streets?

This question emerges in the backdrop, of new entrepreneurial informal economy, in forms of the food streets in various important locations of city. This question was addressed through my personal interests towards food. I explore this question by giving you an insight to the famous street-food places, also known as Khau Galis in the city of Mumbai. Vendors and hawkers set up their stalls on the on the streets, near important landmarks or locations of the city forming these food streets.

I chose these streets on the basis of their location, context i.e. typology and scale. First street is opposite Mithibai college, which I refer to as the "Student's Khau Gali" and second being, below the Vile Parle skywalk near the railway station, "The Local Khau Gali". Third one is behind the Cross maidan, "The Working Khau Gali". Fourth, few "Neighborhood Food Junctions". Fifth "Commercial Night Food Street" at Malad and last an "Informal Food Plaza" opposite Air India Building, Churchgate. I mapped the activities, the typology of the infrastructure and the user space which forms these food streets.

The Central argument of this dissertation is that food streets are an important public need and should be given encouraged to consolidate. The fieldwork helps further to break down into four sub arguments. First, food streets play an important role in the city's emerging social and informal economy. Second, perceived and sometimes actual, poor infrastructural quality in terms of the sanitation and spatial functionality of these food streets becomes a barrier for its legitimacy. Third, in modern terms, a typical street is considered only for vehicular movement, parking, sometimes for pedestrian movement but not for hawking and other informal uses i.e. creating issues of legality for hawkers. And lastly, Infrastructure of food on streets, act as an infrastructure for the city by energizing the city as food becomes a common ground for social interactions thus creating, a blurred
boundary between public and private spaces. Hence how can one reinterpret the food streets as an infrastructure for the city? How can architecture help to consolidate, improve and redesign a food street and present it as an infrastructure for the city?

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> Dancing Acts - Siddharth Chitalia

Following Charles Baudelaire, Walter Benjamin and Sadat Hasan Manto, I argue that the metaphor of the theatre offers us a fertile  methodological lens to ‘see’ and ‘sense’ the street, as it sets a relational play between the characters, objects and spaces. The interpretational possibilities of the street as a theatre of urban life, move our understanding beyond metaphors that frame its space as a ‘disease’ (congestion, hawking etc.) to be cured through surgery or as a ‘right’ to be asserted over public space on the one hand. And even complements those that frame it as a set  of ‘claims’ that impinge to appropriate public space (economies, religiosities,property etc.), or ‘affordances’ offered by multiple objects (furniture etc.), on the other hand.

The research was conducted on a street along the Borivali railway station of Mumbai. Methods like video recording specifics junctions, walking and shadowing people on the street, conducting unstructured interviews and sketching the observation on site were used. Through which archetype like distributor, hawkers, prostitutes, truckers, drunkards etc. were identified. Questions like what is the purpose of these archetypes in the space? How are they setting up the space?

What feelings and behavioural changes they are generating amongst others? Were used to structure the observations. I advance three arguments through this dissertation. First, through the poem, a summary of my research findings, I argue that the narrative inquiry into a ‘street as theatre’ presents the claims of its characters and their temporal spatiality as a series of non-synchronized, fragmented dancing acts. The affordances
provided by objects in these acts do not emerge only as a property of their form but the meanings that the characters lend to the objects. For instance, prostitutes use trucks and public restrooms as a space where they can serve pleasure. Second, as against a problem, I argue that the non-synchronized and fragmented theatre offers a series of multi-perspective points that dismantle the single perspective through which the space of the street is viewed in many of the metaphors discussed. Such a multiplicity of perspectives could offer architects, urban designers, planners, administrators, activists,lawyers and others, vantage points through which innovative interventions could be framed, that better the surfacing of urban life. And third, I argue that the ‘street as theatre’ offers immense potential to architects and artists to playfully explore the reinterpretation of performance art spaces (theatre,gallery) in the contemporary context.

I, therefore, ask: If the ‘street as theatre’ presents temporal spatiality from multiplicity of perspectives, then how can its inversion, the ‘theatre as a street’ be used to re-imagine the architecture of contemporary performance spaces?

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 11 /   Institutions 

> Of Curricula and Learning Spaces - Manasi Thacker

How does space affect learning? What is the relationship between curriculum and space design?

To understand what really are the aspects of the curriculum that play a role towards designing of space, I have chosen schools as my sample. Learning spaces are often designed according to administrative convenience. Students are divided into grades depending upon their age and further into groups for class allocation. The space too, is typically divided into formal classrooms, admin and common rooms. The approach taken towards design is that of logistical segregation and problem solving and not value centric. I chose to conduct my fieldwork in and around Delhi, more specifically, in the areas of New Delhi, Gurgaon and New Okhla Industrial Development Authority (NOIDA). My rationale for the selection of schools is that I wanted to compare how different educational philosophies, both in the public and private sector schools and across different boards, shape the spaces of learning. I, therefore, chose the following schools that cut across all the above categories, and to which I could find access to conduct primary field research: St. Charles School (Convent, ICSE), Shikshantar (ICSE), The Heritage school (Experiential, CBSE & IB), Mothers international Montessori, Ukti (Waldorf, CBSE), Simple Education Foundation (PPP, MCD, CBSE), Shaheed Anusuya Prasad (government school, CBSE), Delhi Public School (CBSE).

The fieldwork was conducted through three methods: interviews, visual observation and participant observation. After the field work, I analysed the curriculums and drew a comparative study of all the samples. These categories are analysed in two parts which will have sub parts to further relate them with one another. They are: curriculum and typology.

Based on this I came to the conclusion that space does affect learning. Indeed, it plays an important role as the physical environment if thought through well, can translate the philosophy into its physical manifestation. This helps students embody concepts better. Secondly, the curriculums aren’t rich across all categories and hence a mere translation of their curriculum is not enough. They need to be updated and thought through in a more nuanced manner after which they can be translated into physical spaces. Therefore, I ask the question: How can learning environments in Delhi’s state schools be better such that they respond to the diverse structure of the curricula? What kind of architectural strategies could help the spatial environments of the school to respond to the curricula?

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> Urban Temples - Radhika Rathi

This aim of this thesis is to understand architecture of ‘worship spaces’, generating in the dense urban environment. The academia emphasizes on formal structure and romanticizes values of light, scale, symmetry, order and other such attributes of worship spaces. These understanding is extracted from academic studies of traditional spaces of worship in India.

Urban temples part away from such ideals and become part of our everyday life by morphing into the economic, social and physical character of any given site. It Produces unique, collaged, reshaped heterotopic spaces. This challenges our conventional associations, beliefs with ritualistic spaces, otherwise created by several religious practices. Rather, urban temples represent an uncanny mixture of revised rituals for worship for the contemporary city in their material form.

The aim of the study is to analyze how urban temples exist amidst our everyday life within the city and the nature by which the resultant space is generated. Its adaptability and the active hybridization of programs, allows everyday programs like medical shop, dance class, street hawkers, newspaper reading stand becoming part of it. The thesis considers five conditions within the city of Mumbai, wherein specific temple types emerge in response to distinct urban forces.

‘Urban Temples’ sparked my interest as they display how collaged, multi-layered and heterotopic the religious practices in our contemporary city are. They reveal the current understanding of everyday worship in our city. This study tries to open up the imagination of everyday ‘other spaces’, with the help of these urban temples. How these urban temple reshape according to the needs of people and physical constraints. It helps us to understand how religion becomes important instrument for curation of space and produces distinct built typologies within the city.

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> Architecture of Jain Religious Institutions - Pooja Temkar

Different communities are seen in Mumbai. That is formed due to various reasons some by the same kind of work, some by similar beliefs and practices, some are formed where communities of people are brought together by geographic boundaries etc. These communities demands for certain spaces to carry out their daily activities. Such spaces become an important part of their life as they are interdependent on these spaces for their daily routine.

The architecture for religious community, spaces and its institutions has been ignored. My thesis aims at understanding and studying such community in Mumbai which is formed by similar beliefs and practice. Understanding their peculiar actions by the community and their practices that shape space and their requirement of spaces to perform the activities.

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