Jagan Shah
Director, NIUA

Jagan Shah is the Director of National Institute of Urban Affairs, the premier think-tank associated with the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India. The institute conducts research, policy and evaluation work for the Ministry and is presently also executing projects supported by the Cities Alliance, ADB, World Bank, Rockefeller Foundation, Bernard van Leer Foundation, the Tata Trusts, the Bhubaneswar Development Authority and the City & Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra. NIUA is the national PMU for the HRIDAY Scheme for heritage cities.

Shah has 20 years of professional work experience in various aspects of urban development in India. He studied Architectural Design from School of Planning & Architecture (SPA), New Delhi and Architectural History & Theory from the University of Cincinnati and Columbia University in New York. He has served as the Director of Sushant School of Architecture, Gurgaon and has taught at the School of Planning & Architecture (SPA) from 1998 till 2006. From 2007 to 2010, he was the Chief Executive of Urban Space Consultants, providing consultancy in policy formulation, spatial planning, heritage conservation, transportation and livelihoods development.

Shah was deeply involved with revision of the Regional Plan 2021 for the National Capital Region, has devised intervention strategies for the India Foundation for the Arts and the Sir Ratan TataTrust, and has executed large scale urban design assignments such as 27 stations for the Regional Rapid Transit System for the NCR and the Master Plan for the Mizoram University campus in Aizawl.

Shah was a founding member of the Modern Asian Architecture Network. He has authored Contemporary Indian Architecture (Roli, 2008) and co-authored Building Beyond Borders (NBT, 1995) with Satish Grover. His next book, 5000 Years of Indian Architecture: From River Valley to Metropolis will be published by Roli Books.

Kanak Tiwari
Team Lead

Kanak Tiwari is an Urban Designer and Development Practitioner based in Delhi with close to 15 years of work experience on a variety of issues within the urban sector. At NIUA, she works as an Urban Development Specialist handling two projects as Team Lead.
She has her M Phil in Development Studies from University of Cambridge, UK and completed her Masters in Urban Design from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, for which she received the Commonwealth shared scholarship and the GATE scholarship respectively.
At NIUA, she is heading the Child Friendly Smart Cities project. She is closely involved in designing and coordinating programmes and projects, building and leading small and large multi-disciplinary teams, capacity building of diverse stakeholders, liaison with national, state and local level governments, monitoring and evaluation of projects and processes, knowledge management and dissemination, engaging citizens constructively in the dialogue for development, research, writing and editing.
Prior to this, Ms Tiwari has worked extensively in areas of urban governance, participatory urban planning, urban services, smart urbanism, poverty, urban design and urban regeneration with NGOs, Government organizations as well as international development agencies in domains of  urban policy and governance; urban and regional planning; urban design; people’s participation in development; urban reforms; child friendly cities; gender and development and urban mobility.She has also taught students of Urban Design, Urban Planning, Urban Regeneration and Architecture intermittently for the past 11 years as a Visiting Faculty at SPA, New Delhi and JMI, New Delhi. She is also a member of the National Steering Committee which conducts a technology needs assessment for 'Habitat Sector' towards India's Third National Communication (TNC) and Biennial Update Reports (BURs) to United Nation Framework Conventions for Climate Change (UNFCCC) (created under MoEFCC). She is Founder and Director of Centre for Contemporary Urbanism (CCU)

She has also been the Lead Researcher on the books ‘Urbanisation in India – Challenges Opportunities and the Way Forward,’ and ‘Transforming Our Cities – Postcards of Change’ by Dr. Isher Judge Ahluwalia and Associate Editor of two volumes of Urban India (biannual journal of NIUA).

Divya Jindal
Research Associate

Divya Jindal, is an Urbanist, with a masters degree from Delft University of Technology, Netherlands and a Bachelors in Architecture from Chandigarh, India. Divya is a Research Associate at the National Institute of Urban Affairs(NIUA) and is currently involved with a project funded by the Bernard van Leer Foundation (BvLF),Netherlands on developing Child Friendly Smart Cities. Within the project team, her work is focused on developing urban design guidelines for livable, safer and healthier living environment for children in urban India. She has collated an exhaustive compendium of global good practices for child friendly cities, which can encourage cities to take innovative child friendly initiatives. She has keen interest in strategic urban design development with focus on environment and infrastructure planning.

Prior to NIUA, Divya worked with Dutch urbanist and professor, Frits Palmboom in the Netherlands and did research on porosity in cities focusing on larger parts of Antwerp, Belgium (with Palmbout Urban landscapes) and peri-urban governance and urban planning from infrastructure and environment point of view taking the case of Chandigarh, India. As an architect, Divya worked for over four years in Ahmedabad, India with Prof. B V Doshi, a renowned Indian architect and urban planner.

Ishleen Kaur
Research Associate

Ishleen Kaur works as a Research Associate with NIUA. She is gold medallist in Masters in Urban Regeneration from Jamia Milia Islamia university, New Delhi and a Bachelors in Architecture. At NIUA, she is working on looking at urban design and planning aspects of cities which make them people friendly, particularly for children. 
She has over five years of experience. In the past, she has worked with United Nations Development Program (UNDP) as an Architect Planner for the implementation of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana. She has also worked with Society for Participatory Research in South East Asia (PRIA) for a participatory panning project intended at creating responsive cities by engaging citizens. She has worked as an architect in the Housing and Urban poverty alleviation wing of Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and has been an active volunteer in Centre for Contemporary Urbanism(CCU) since 2015.
Her research interests include Urban policy implementation, Urban Planning and Design, People friendly cities, and Livable cities.

Aparajita Ghatak
Project Manager- GIS

With a Ph.D. in Geography and P.G Diploma in Remote Sensing & GIS, Ms Aparajita has 18 years of professional experience with National & International Projects on Geospatial Application.  Presently she is associated with NIUA as Project Manager – GIS and managing the geospatial operations. Prior joining to NIUA, she was associated with ICF-GHK Consulting Ltd. UK and provided technical assistance as a GIS Expert to Ministry of Housing & Poverty Alleviation, Govt. of India for effective implementation of Support to National Policies for Urban Poverty Reduction Project (SNPUPR) funded by DFID. Under this project, she worked with MoHUPA on geospatial policy formulation, implementation of its urban poverty alleviation schemes, especially Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY) which envisaged a “Slum Free India” with inclusive and equitable cities in which every citizen had access to basic civic and social services and decent shelter.

Aksheyta Gupta
GIS Expert

Aksheyta Gupta is a GIS Expert with NIUA. She has done her Masters in Geoinformatics from TERI University, Delhi.  She specializes in GIS, remote sensing, mapping, earth sciences, socio-economic environment, urban planning, climate change, sustainability, Smart cities and green landscape.
At NIUA, she is working under various project head such as SCBP (Sanitation Capacity Building Program) CFSC (Child Friendly Smart Cities) SHLC (Sustainable, Healthy, Learning, Cities & Neighbourhood), Smart Net & AMRUT Capacity Building. SCBP (Sanitation Capacity Building Program) - Creation of various thematic maps on Sanitation parameters for the cities of Uttrakhand. CFSC (Child Friendly Smart Cities) - Plotting of Aanganwadi & School in Delhi. Series of Choropleth Map made for CFSC project (Category: Crime, Population, Gender, Education, Sanitation, Water, Health etc.) Police Stations & Fire Stations were also plotted. Mapping of Night shelter. SHLC (Sustainable, Healthy, Learning, Cities & Neighbourhood) -Time Series analysis for metropolitan cities was generated using Satellite imagery (1995-2004-2013).Smart Net - GIS Database Creation for 12 Hriday Cities.GIS database creation of 69 cities completed. Rest 31 cities are in progress. Regular monitoring of progress of geotagging exercise and submission of weekly update to MoHUA.

Previous Employee

Sabina Suri,
Team Lead (2015-17)
Ajith Kaliyath,
Team Lead (2017)
Jyoti Dash,
Research Associate (2014-15)
Neelam Jena,
Research Associate (2017)
Debashrita Chatterjee,
Research Associate (2017-18)

Interns at CFSC

Ar. Debjani Saha
Masters in City Planning, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur

Intern, 2018.

Sumer Drall
Dual BA Program between Columbia University (USA) and Sciences Po (France)

Intern, 2018.

Surbhi Zutshi
Master’s in Urban Design, School of Planning and Architecture (SPA), New Delhi

Intern, 2018.

Naina Seth
Master’s in Public Policy and Governance, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Hyderabad

Intern, 2018.

Shubhajit Bagchi
Master’s in Urban Design, School of Planning and Architecture (SPA), New Delhi

Intern, 2018.

Prasenjit Shukla
Masters in Urban & Regional Planning (MURP), CEPT University Ahmedabad

Intern, 2017.

Gargi Mishra (Intern)
Masters in Urban & Regional Planning (MURP), CEPT University Ahmedabad

Intern, 2017.

Sean Watson
Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, International Affairs concentration, Major in Geoscience, Trinity University (USA)

Intern, 2016.

Himadri Dodeja
Master's of Planning, Department of Housing, School of Planning and Architecture (SPA)

Intern, 2016.