Gender Inclusive Urban Spaces: Issues and Questions / India, Chennai

India, Chennai
Indian Institute of Technology Madras


This MOOC examines the theme “Gender Inclusivity of Urban Spaces” and highlights the question of unbalanced and inequitable urbanisation in the Global South. It brings into focus the urban processes and policies in the two south Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, known for their long-standing collective political mobilisation and claim-making.

The lectures are organised broadly around three themes: 1) conceptual questions concerning gender inclusivity in cities, 2) relations between the urban infrastructure and exclusionary practices and 3) intersectionality and marginalisation in the urbanisation process. The course delves into urban mechanisms that effectively marginalise sexual minorities, gender minorities and people with disabilities. It offers insights into the physical, mobile and planning infrastructure as well as into the prospects of sustainability. The lectures will also delve into and explore the intricacies of gender in urban governance mechanisms and urban labour markets. They are offered by a team comprising of academics, social and political activists, NGO representatives and policymakers.

To better understand the conceptual issues and their translation into field contexts, effective pedagogical methods such as short video stories (15–20 minutes) for each theme, carefully curated reading lists and mind maps of lectures will be included in the MOOC. Rima Mathew, film director and journalist, will produce the short videos as a media activist partner. Benoy Peter, Executive Director of the Centre for Migration and Inclusive Development (CMID), will be our NGO partner.

SDG#11 Target and Indicator

The course aims to address the target 11.7 under SDG #11. This target reads as follows: “By 2030, provide universal access to safe, inclusive and accessible, green and public spaces, in particular for women and children, older persons and persons with disabilities”. By foregrounding experiential knowledge, and attempting to interrupt the dissemination of conventional epistemic flows of urban theory, the MOOC aims to bring to the forefront voices and narratives that are often sidelined in the urban planning process.

Lead Partner

Assoc. Prof. Binitha V Thampi

Development Studies


Rima Mathew
Benoy Peter