Environment in India


India’s environment is rapidly changing in the face of unprecedented urbanization, industrialization, agricultural development and population growth. Water supply, sewage and waste present major challenges to local governments in urban areas, whilst modern agricultural technologies and the politics of land and water are serious issues in the countryside. The forests, mineral-rich earth, rivers and the seas have become sites of growing conflict between local residents, government and multinational corporations. India’s policies on climate change, industry and energy are now hotly debated in global discourses on environment, which could have far reaching geopolitical and social consequences. This eclectic module looks at some of the major environmental issues facing India today and discusses a number of scholarly debates on environment.

The aim of this module is to encourage students to think critically about how the Indian state engages with environmental challenges, where it falls short, and what lies beyond its purview. The course is expected to develop students’ ability to construct empirically informed arguments about environmental issues in India, to draw on a range of theoretical approaches, and to foster a critical engagement with literatures across disciplines. This course of six 2 hour lectures requires no prior background in environmental studies. 

Take a look at...

Baviskar, A. In the Belly of the River: Tribal Conflicts over Development in the Narmada Valley. Delhi: Oxford University Press, (1996).

World Bank ‘World Development Report: Development and Climate Change’, Washington, (2010).