Scaling City Institutions for India Initiative (SCI-FI)

The Scaling City Institutions for India (SCI-FI) programme aims to better understand ‘governance scale’ in Indian cities in tandem with ‘sector specific socio-economic scales’. Through research, the programme aims to inform stakeholders, including the three tiers of the government, to develop better informed policies and programmes enabling improved governance and service delivery. It has two key thematic focus in areas of Land, Housing and Planning, and Water and Sanitation. The SCI-FI programme is nested at the Centre for Policy Research (CPR) since 2013.

The Land, Housing, and Planning (LHP) initiative under the SCI-FI programme aims to deepen the understanding of the interrelated governance and sector specific challenges in the land, housing and, planning in urban areas in India. The SCI-FI: LHP initiative envisages to inform multiple stakeholders, including the three tiers of the government, on demand-driven, sustainable, alternative, and scalable models for delivering and operationalizing housing, basic services, and property rights for the urban poor.

The Water and Sanitation initiative under the SCI-FI programme seeks to understand diverse reasons for poor water and sanitation and to examine how these might be related to technology, service delivery models, questions of institutions, governance, finance, and socio-economic dimensions. The SCI-FI: Water and Sanitation initiative seeks to support national, state, and city authorities to develop policies and programmes for intervention with the goal of increasing access to safe and sustainable sanitation in both urban and rural areas.

Adopting a multidisciplinary approach, SCI-FI is organized around clusters of legal studies; water science and engineering/planning; economics; and social and anthropological studies to systematically undertake sector analysis, bottom up review and research. It works across thematic clusters to do academic research, programme analysis, action research, strengthen the capacity of government stakeholders, support policy formulation, and programme implementation. The programme continues to engage with various partners, including academicians, practitioners, civil society organisations, donor agencies, and government bodies at the national, state, and city levels.