Satellites and Surveys: Wellbeing and Governance in Indian Slums

Nearly one billion people live in urban “slums” – neighborhoods that lack adequate services and secure property rights. Most official data sources omit the poorest and most vulnerable settlements from their databases, making it difficult to generate rigorous empirical evidence from official sources. In this project, we iterate between satellite analysis and fieldwork to build an original sample of slums from three Indian cities. We conduct nearly 10,000 household surveys from over 200 slums, as well as social network census surveys from a subset of 8 neighborhoods. We draw on this extensive original database to answer multiple questions about the range of policy problems as well as coping mechanisms across urban slums. Data collection is completed but we are continuing to author papers based on this evidence.