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Harini Nagendra,  Bangalore

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Harini Nagendra

Harini Nagendra

Professor, School of Development
Azim Premji University
Bangalore, India

Harini Nagendra is a Professor in the School of Development at Azim Premji University, and Asia Research Coordinator at the Center for the Study of Institutions, Population, and Environmental Change at Indiana University. Her research straddles two major, yet linked areas examining human-driven changes in ecosystems and biodiversity in forests and cities. Harini coordinates a program of urban ecology focusing on Bangalore and Delhi in India. She is interested in seeing how people can be positive and negative agents of change, bringing about ecosystem degradation in some contexts, and providing protection and restoration in others. Harini Nagendra received a Ph.D. in Ecological Sciences in 1998 from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India. She has subsequently held positions at the University of California in San Diego, Indiana University, ETH Zurich, and ATREE Bangalore. Most recently, Harini was a Hubert H Humphrey Distinguished Visiting Professor at Macalester College in Saint Paul in 2013. She is a lead author for the IPCC Annual Report 5 – Working Group III, and a member of the Scientific Steering Committee for the International Council for Science Programme on Ecosystem Change and Society, DIVERSITAS, and the Global Land Project. She received a 2013 Elinor Ostrom Senior Scholar Award for Collective Governance of the Commons for her diversity of work, innovation and use of different methodological approaches, and her active participation as a practitioner on the urban commons.

February 15, 2015
Tiger hunting in India 1880’sFeature

India is on a rapid path to urbanisation. While currently only 30% of India’s population lives in cities, this is changing rapidly. Plans have been recently announced to build 100 new “smart cities” across India, with an ambitious plan that includes the proposed investment of 1.2 billion US dollars in 2015. Many of these predicted … Continue reading The Wild Beast as the Other: Framing of Urban Wildlife in Popular Imagination

May 28, 2014

From my office, on the 9th floor of a tall building in an academic campus in Bangalore, I have a birds-eye view of the city’s peri-urban surroundings. To the west, I can see a 6-lane high-speed highway choked by traffic, full of people frenetically commuting from their homes in city to their jobs in the … Continue reading The Cooperative Governance of Urban Commons

December 10, 2013
Photograph 1: Farmers in a rural Indian village spread a millet crop on the road, so that urban motorists can drive their vehicles onto the dried ears, crushing them to make it easy to remove the loosened grains. Thus, rural areas take advantage of their connection with cities to reduce the manual labor involved with manual threshing of crops. Photo: Harini Nagendra

Popular descriptions of urbanization these days often describe humanity as having entered a “new urban era“, with more people living in cities today than they do in rural areas. Urban areas have a large footprint of impact on the rural countryside, and the line between the urban and the rural is particularly challenging to make in … Continue reading The Village within the City—Rurality in the Era of Globalization

June 26, 2013
Photo: Harini Nagendra

The Nature of Cities collective blog is now over a year old, during which time my friends, colleagues and co-authors have written many fascinating articles on various aspects of nature, and on people-nature interactions in urban environments. Today, in my blog, I’d like to step away from my previous two pieces—a discussion of tree diversity … Continue reading Equity in the Urban Commons

February 6, 2013
6_Heritage trees in Lal Bagh

A predominantly rural country, India is rapidly urbanizing. Although only 30% of India’s population lives in cities now, this proportion is expected to increase to 50% in the next two decades. It is becoming increasingly important, therefore, to have a good understanding of the processes that shape ecology and conservation in Indian cities. Unfortunately, we … Continue reading Biodiversity and the City—Challenges for India

October 7, 2012
BangaloreKids WIDE

There is no single path to sustainability. As Thomas Elmqvist wrote in a recent blog post, each city has its own challenges and opportunities for sustainable growth, and yet we all have much to learn from each other. Reading the past weeks of blogs on the Nature of Cities has been fascinating. Looking at the … Continue reading A Tale of Two Lakes: Collective Action in Cities