Governing the Environment of Small Cities: The Role of Municipalities in Gujarat and West Bengal

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Tuesday, June 25th, 2019

Tuesday, June 25, 20192:00PM - 3:30PM208N, North House, 1 Devonshire Place
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There is a widely shared belief that decentralization has the potential to lead to more efficient, responsive and accountable government. In the Indian context, however, the existing literature indicates that state (provincial) governments failed to devolve substantive powers and funds to municipalities. This presentation discusses municipal-state relations through the lens of urban environmental governance and in the case of small cities, which are generally understudied. While our findings based on in-depth research in Gujarat and West Bengal largely confirm the conclusions from the literature, they also point to important differences between the two states and to differing degrees of municipal agency and relative autonomy influenced by institutional frameworks and the flow of funds and personnel.

René Véron is professor of social geography based at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. His research focuses on urban environmental governance with a regional specialization on India. He is particularly interested in exploring socio-environmental processes related to urban environmental services, waste and pollution using an approach of urban political ecology.


René Véron
Professor, Social Geography, University of Lausanne, Switzerland; Visiting Professor, Asian Institute

Rajyashree Narayanareddy
Assistant Professor, Department of Geography and Planning; University of Toronto at Scarborough

Main Sponsor

Asian Institute


Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance

Centre for South Asian Studies

Department of Geography and Planning

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