Photo of Lyla Mehta

Lyla Mehta - Professorial Fellow

Resource Politics; Cities; Gender and Sexuality
T: +44 (0)1273 915677
E: l.mehta@ids.ac.uk

CV

Administrator:
Alice Shaw

Google Scholar URL:
goo.gl/UjHmTF

Professor Lyla Mehta is a Professorial Fellow at IDS and a Visiting Professor at Noragric, Norwegian University of Life Sciences. She trained as a sociologist (University of Vienna) and has a PhD in Development Studies (University of Sussex).

Her work focuses on water and sanitation, forced displacement and resistance, scarcity, rights and access, resource grabbing and the politics of environment/ development and sustainability. More recently, her projects have addressed peri urban dynamics, the politics of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in Africa and uncertainty and climate change from below in India. She has extensive field research in India studying the politics of water scarcity, the linkages between gender, displacement and resistance, access to water in peri urban areas and climate change and uncertainty.

Additionally, she has worked on water management issues in southern Africa and studied the cultural and institutional aspects of sanitation in Ethiopia, Bangladesh, India and Indonesia and the scaling of community-led total sanitation. Her work uses the case of water to explore conceptual and empirical questions concerning scarcity, power, politics, uncertainty, rights and access to resources, the contested nature of the 'public' and 'private' and the cultural politics of development. She is currently the water and sanitation domain convenor of the STEPS centre.

This project sees uncertainty as a key barrier to efforts to support social transformation to respond to the challenges posed by climate change.

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The Water Justice Programme critically examines the politics and pathways of water and sanitation policy and practice through interdisciplinary research on access, rights and control over these key resources

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This project examines the role of peri-urban spaces in urban expansion and how resilience can be fostered in these contexts.

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The STEPS Centre is an interdisciplinary global research and policy engagement hub, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. It aims to develop a new approach to understanding, action and communication on sustainability and development.

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This EPSRC project focuses on the 'peri-urban' environment, which includes areas outside cities that are characterised by poor infrastructure, and poor access to formal water and sanitation services.

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Water is an invisible passenger travelling on and under roads. Roads also act as dikes altering run-off patterns and sometimes even re-arranging watersheds. Road programs and projects directly deal with existing land and water property and user rights: farmers gaining or losing water resources.

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This study aims to understand and compare processes and relationships associated with the ‘marketization of nature’ – how nature-based commodities and markets for trading them are brought into being – in the context of mangrove afforestation, reforestation and restoration projects in Kenya and India.

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This is the front cover to the book, 'Flows and Practices: The Politics of Integrated Water Resources Management in Eastern and Southern Africa'.

Flows and Practices: The Politics of Integrated Water Resources Management in Eastern and Southern Africa

Book (2017)

For the past two decades, Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) has been the dominant paradigm in water resources. This book explores how ideas of IWRM are being translated and adapted in Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe. More details

This is the front cover to IDS Policy Briefing 142, 'Improving Livelihoods Through
Better Road and Water Integration and Planning'.

Improving Livelihoods Through Better Road and Water Integration and Planning

IDS Policy Briefing 142 (2017)

Poorly planned roads can negatively affect rural dwellers by damaging land-based assets, through water logging and erosion. However, by modifying the flows of water and the quantity of surface and groundwater available, roads can also have positive impacts on the lives and livelihoods of affected populations. More details

Resilience as a Policy Narrative: Potentials and Limits in the Context of Urban Planning

Climate and Development (2017)

The aim of this paper is to analyse the emergence of the concept of 'urban resilience' in the literature and to assess its potentials and limitations as an element of policy planning. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Introduction to the Special Issue – Flows and Practices: The Politics of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in Southern Africa

Water Alternatives 9.3 (2016)

This article provides a conceptual framework to study: the flow of IWRM as an idea; its translation and articulation into new policies, institutions and allocation mechanisms, and the resulting practices and effects across multiple scales – global, regional, national and local. More details

Thematic Expertise:
Accelerating Sustainability; Citizenship; Climate Change; Climate Change Vulnerability and Resilience; Conflict Violence and Security; Environment; Gender; Migration; Politics and Power; Reducing Inequalities; Rights; Science and Society; Water and Sanitation.

Related Programmes and Centres:
CLTS; STEPS.

Geographic Expertise:
South East Asia; Sub Saharan Africa; Bangladesh; Ethiopia; India; Indonesia; South Africa.