About Us

CCU is an organization dedicated to promote initiatives, research, knowledge gathering and dissemination that would lead to realization of the real potential of our cities as productive, healthy, beautiful, exciting, and efficient places. It is a collective effort to enhance the knowledge about cities and the emerging urban geographies and cultures. It aims to enhance the pride people feel towards their cities. It utilizes and integrates the existing social and professional capital in our cities for strategic urban initiatives. It strives for newer ways of effective engagement with people to bring them on board for the task of making cities better places.
Every urban dweller by virtue of a deep association with the city, feels an inherent need to contribute towards bettering it but being a single entity, lacks the resources to do so in a meaningful way. CCU provides a platform where individuals can come together and engage in sharing, whetting, integrating and implementing ideas aimed at making our cities better places.
CCU banks on the unrealized potential of the diverse knowledge, experiences and expertise available in cities. It is our firm belief that solutions to the enormous challenges faced by cities lie within them, and would be facilitated by diverse actors, different people, multi-disciplinary organizations and varied instruments. We want to focus on urban strengths to tackle the challenges in a smarter and more strategic way, utilizing the social and professional capital that cities possess but hardly use.

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Projects and Activities

Contact Us

If you want to get in touch with us, please submit an enquiry, or write to us at info@ccu.org.in

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Our Blog

My journey through a small town

I love cities. I feel that most of us who live in cities have a strong connection with the place in one way or the other. Our cities are the location of our experiences, memories and stories, which together, eventually creates......Read More

There..where my heart is

The day never stops, the night doesn’t pass My city beckons me, every second seems to last. As I lay on my bed, or wake up at dawn, Your memories come flooding, there is no moving on. Yellow walls of my room, bring back the Amaltas.....Read More

A hatke guide to urban cycling

Before I come across as a cross-country cyclomaniac, let me tell you that my puffing-panting is the subject of daily ridicule at my workplace. Ironically, and sadly, it’s by those who, like me, drive in their own vehicles to work (although my vehicle is ridden rather than driven)....Read More

Waste Free Versova Koliwada

Bombay61 has drafted a project for Versova Koliwada, a historical fishing village in Mumbai. The project was submitted to Shelter Global’s international competition ‘Dencity’ (2016) and won the 1st prize.....Read More

It felt like an ideal welcome to a first timer, with the entire city lit up – emphasizing streets, landmarks, bridges, waterways – and my eyes kept wandering in all directions from the airplane window to catch the first glimpse of New York! A city that never sleeps!....Read More

Christmassy Public Spaces

A public space is a social space that is generally open and accessible to people. Roads (including the pavement), public squares, parks and beaches are typically considered public space....Read More

Suffocating Childhood in Cities

Deadly pollution levels and their impact on public health, especially the impacts on children, have become dinner table conversation these days. Most parents in Delhi, for a fleeting moment while nursing their children with persistent ...Read More

Flâneur in Shahjahanabad

Every time the thought – ‘it’s been a while since I visited old Delhi’ occurs, I just get up and go there. The flavour, the colour, the hustle and bustle of old Delhi is crazy but infectious, believe me. I don’t lose my temper here while paving my way through the ...Read More

A Spiritual Encounter on a heritage walk through Paharganj, Delhi

Sometimes, it takes mixed expressions to recount an experience that is complex and difficult to explain. Something similar happened to me while writing this article. It is about an experience I recently had during one of the heritage walks I conducted in...Read More

Agra – a glimpse into its lesser known history and heritage

We all have heard of Agra and know about the Taj Mahal, one of the seven wonders of the world, a World Heritage Site, an architectural marvel. Is that all that the city of Agra has or is famous for, or should...Read More

Confounded: The Story of an Urban Planner in an Age of Excitement for all things Urban and Indian

Now, begin as I might try at the end of a sermonizing or descriptive analyses, perhaps even a quaint equation of things Indian and Urban, I have come to a distinct realization, that the only truth I know about cities, or citizenry, or the machinations of urban space...Read More

An ode to times past… and people present…A piece of my Delhi…

Recently, all newspapers covered the sad news of the demise of SH Raza, a wonderful, wonderful artist. Most of the articles were accompanied by his famous...Read More


A weeklong celebration was dedicated to cherish the founding day of Madras and its 377th birthday. Madras has witnessed a lot since being Madrasapatnam to becoming Madras to the transformation to the present metropolitan Chennai. The city is changing, and with it are vanishing some marvelous foot prints of the past. ...Read More

A City and its Dynamics – Khirkee, New Delhi

The city of Delhi is a cluster of many historic capital cities scattered across its expanse. It has many ancient medieval monuments, historical settlements, archaeological sites and remains. Most of these historical places still exist, full of old buildings, artefacts and other features of heritage and cultural value. ...Read More

The Silver Screen and the future of Cities – How would people get from A to B?

I look outside my window and see an elderly lady and a child enjoying a colorful story book, laughing and playing on their way to school in a small floating self driven pod. Quality time on the road! The rest of the view is...Read More

The Numburban Human

I am a numburban human being - living in an urban place and so benumbed by numbers that I shudder to teach my daughter nursery rhymes because some of them go - 'one two buckle my shoe....'! Are you a numburban human too? Read on to figure ...Read More

Are We Smart Enough for Smart Cities?

Smart city is the most trending term in India these days. The concept originated at the time when the entire world was facing one of the worst economic crises. In 2008, IBM began work on a ‘smarter cities’ concept as part of its Smarter Planet...Read More


As soon as I open my Instagram account, and type Delhi, the search results give my eyes and taste buds a wake up call, be it any hour of the day. Sometimes, not eating out is compensated by surfing on zomato and checking out food hotspots in the city that are yet to be tried. Ask a movie star, any college student.....Read More


Everybody is waiting for 16 May 2014 as it would finally put to rest the discussion and debates that have been raging for the past one year of whether Mr. Narendra Modi is our next Prime Minister. Every PM has a unique development agenda in general and also for urban areas/cities in particular. Cities have come to the forefront after economic liberalization of 1991.....Read More


There are two kinds of people in cities – those who like to ask for directions when lost, and those who hate asking for directions even if they are getting late for their own wedding.
For all the people who ask for directions, there must be people who give directions. These are of 4 kinds:
– Those who give extremely detailed directions – they tell you exactly how many shops you’ll pass or how many trees or dogs you’ll see on your right on the way to your destination. Meanwhile, you’ll be blocking traffic behind you, wondering whether this direction-teller can hear all those horns honking or is stone deaf….you’ll have your hand on the handle to roll up your window quickly or you’ll be revving your accelerator while pressing on the brakes at the same time ….....Read More


Open air theatres (OATs) are part of our education campuses, parks/gardens, art/cultural centres and now even IT Parks. Similar space/form has also started appearing as symbolic element in the enclosed manicured landscape spaces set on top of 2 level parking basements in the newer apartments and high-rise gated societies in NCR, Bangalore, Mumbai, Hyderabad and many other cities.
It was very unusual to encounter an OAT; a designed one, inside a RaIn-Basera(Night Shelter), set within the residential quarter along Shankar Gali, behind the now demolished old wall of Shahjahanabad (now Old Delhi).
Wow! was my first expression; an expression of an architect to see a deliberate design of an open space by another architect/designer/CPWD or PWD Engineer.....Read More


Like Bhelpuri, the city has a number of ingredients, and like the city, this blog has a number of contributors. Now, experiencing the city is very much like having Bhelpuri – every person tastes the city in her/his own particular style – some elements are tangy for some but bland for others; sweet for some but bitter for others. But on the whole it makes a great snack!!
The contributors to this blog have two things in common – (i) they are volunteering for the ‘Centre for Contemporary Urbanism’ in some capacity and, (ii) each one of them feels strongly about the urban environment and would like to help make it better......Read More

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CCU is a unit of "Collaborative for Contemporary Urban Studies Pvt. Ltd." registered as a Not-for-profit company under Section 8 of the Companies Act, 2013. Development Partner