About us


With the growth of megacities across the Asia region has come the expansion of peri-urban areas, transition zones where urban and rural activities are juxtaposed and landscape features are subject to rapid modifications induced by human activities. They face unique problems including intense pressures on resources, slum formation, lack of adequate services such as water and sanitation, poor planning and degradation of farmland. These areas face demands from users with contrasting lifestyles and conflicting interests that range from agriculture to residential, industrial and commercial, and the development of green belts and nature reserves.

This project brings experts, scholars, and promising young students and professionals from India and Pakistan together to develop mutual interests and relationships based on a shared exploration of the challenges and impacts of rural to urban transitions and peri-urban interfaces in the South Asia region.

The specific objectives of the project are to:

  • Establish a mutually agreed upon program of research to promote substantive and extended dialogue between Indian and Pakistani scholars, experts, and promising young researchers regarding peri-urbanism, a phenomenon shared by both countries;

  • Work collaboratively to integrate and analyze information and data showing the relative degree of rural, urban, and peri-urban characteristics of selected study areas;

  • Explore and contrast potential environmental, health, and governance issues among rural, urban, and peri-urban areas within the selected areas of each country and between countries; and

  • Jointly disseminate project results within and between countries.

The project seeks to refine and expand a multi-faceted set of activities including building community capacity to collect and analyze data on the relative rural and urban nature of the communities under investigation, explore problems and governance issues in select areas, and develop a community of diverse researchers (young and senior, male and female) in the two countries linked via social networks, face-to-face meetings, and jointly produced products.

The project responds to the need for increased dialogue and better understanding of complex issues that are shared by India and Pakistan. The program is also working on creating new knowledge by developing a better understanding of rural to urban transitions and peri-urban interfaces. The project is structured to allow participants to learn from each otherís experiences and to develop a more realistic understanding of the challenges and opportunities involved in developing an integrative theory of rural to urban transitions.