East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society

East Asia Workshop (Feb. 13) Xuefei Ren, “How China and India Govern Their Cities?”




“How China and India Govern Their Cities 

Xuefei Ren

Associate Professor of Sociology and Global Urban Studies, Michigan State University

UChicago Sociology Alumni


Feb. 13th, Thu 5:00-6:30 pm (NEW TIME FOR WINTER QUARTER!)

Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).

Refreshments will be provided


Urbanization is rapidly overtaking China and India. This transformation has unleashed enormous pressures on land use, housing, and the environment. In this talk, Ren will present findings from her forthcoming book Governing the Urban in China and India: Land Grabs, Slum Clearance, and the War on Air Pollution (2020, Princeton University Press). Drawing upon historical-comparative analyses and extensive fieldwork in Beijing, Guangzhou, Wukan, Delhi, Mumbai, and Singur, the book investigates the ways that Chinese and Indian cities manage land acquisition, slum clearance, and air pollution. She argues that in China urban governance centers on territorial institutions, and in India, urban governance centers on associational politics, encompassing contingent alliances formed among state actors, the private sector, and civil society groups.



Xuefei Ren is associate professor of sociology and global urban studies at Michigan State University. Her work focuses on urban development, governance, architecture, and the built environment in global perspective. She is the author of two award-winning books: Building Globalization: Transnational Architecture Production in Urban China (University of Chicago Press, 2011) and Urban China (Polity Press, 2013). Currently she is working on a number of comparative projects, including a photo-documentary on Detroit and rustbelt China, and a series of articles examining informal settlements, mega-events, and spectacles in urban China, India and Brazil. She is a recipient of a number of distinguished fellowships and grants, including from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Andrew Mellon Foundation, Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies, and American Council of Learned Societies. She received her MA in urban planning from Tokyo Metropolitan University, and Ph.D in Sociology from the University of Chicago.

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* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li: linzhuoli@uchicago.edu

*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance.

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Ren, Xuefei – How China and India Govern Their Cities

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