Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS)

Delhi, India
Date Established: 
Social Policy
Think Tank Website: 
Sanjay Kumar
Executive Director
Over the next 5 years, the Centre’s research agenda will explore the fundamental assumptions that frame political, cultural and social life in India and their ethical and policy implications. Publication of results in the academic and popular press and policy briefs will allow us to engage and influence with the scholarly community, policymakers, and wider public.

The Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) is one of India’s leading social science research institutes. An autonomous institution, the CSDS is frequently engaged in contemporary issues and undertakes research in a number of areas, including democratic representation and governance, development policies, social equity and education.

CSDS supports and nurtures interdisciplinary modes of enquiry, drawing on the tension between rigorous scholarly work and social movements, and between academic commitment and political practices. The Centre has been frequently engaged with contentious contemporary issues that have shaped its academic programme and contributed to social struggles for dignity, livelihood and creative self-expression.

The Centre’s faculty is comprised of scholars from diverse disciplinary backgrounds who pursue different research agendas and follow multiple methodologies. In addition, its programmes and projects facilitate a broader network of scholars, intellectuals and institutions. In addition to pursuing their particular research interests, faculty members also collaborate in the Centre’s activities and projects. The Centre facilitates wider exchange with activists and scholars from around India and abroad through residencies and fellowships. It also organizes annual lectures in memory of its first Chairman, the economist B.N. Ganguli and Giri Deshingkar, a prominent Chinese scholar and member of the Faculty, and is involved in the publication of two significant journals, Alternatives and China Report.

Research Areas: 
religion, secularism and the public sphere
subaltern and minority politics and cultures
transformation in democratic politics
media and information
knowledge and education
the urban question
public policies