UH Manoa Department of Urban and Regional Planning Research Highlight: Fall 2019

This article highlights two publications that were recently released by Ashok Das, a faculty member with the UH Manoa Department of Urban and Regional Planning. These works include a book that he co-authored as well as a case study published by the World Resources Institute. Additional information on Dr. Das and these publications are provided below.

Ashok Das is an associate professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM), USA. He is also an affiliate faculty of UHM’s Center for Southeast Asian Studies, and Center for South Asian Studies. He was co-chair (2016-18) of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning’s (ACSP) Global Planning Educators Interest Group (GPEIG). Appointed by the President of ACSP, he now serves (2019-21) on the new ACSP Global Planning Education Committee. He received his Ph.D. in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); M.Arch. and M.A. in Environmental Planning & Management from Kansas State University; and B. Arch. from the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi. Previously, he was an assistant professor in the San Francisco State University’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning; an architecture and planning consultant in the United States and India; and the chief cartoonist for Architecture+Design, India’s leading architecture magazine. Ashok researches institutional challenges and innovations for ameliorating urban poverty through services provision in Asia-Pacific, particularly in Indonesia and India, and affordable housing in the US. Community participation and empowerment, slum upgrading, decentralization and governance, civil society, community-managed integrated microfinance, disaster risk reduction, inclusionary zoning, and planning education are specific research interests. The Ford Foundation, the World Resources Institute, UN-Habitat (The United Nations Human Settlements Programme), and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs have sought his advisory services.

New Urban Agenda in Asia-Pacific: Governance for Sustainable and Inclusive Cities

Dr. Das and Bharat Dahiya of Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand have co-edited the book, New Urban Agenda in Asia-Pacific: Governance for Sustainable and Inclusive Cities. It explores significant aspects of the New Urban Agenda in the Asia-Pacific region, and presents, from different contexts and perspectives, innovative interventions afoot for transforming the governance of 21st-century cities in two key areas: (i) urban planning and policy; and (ii) service delivery and social inclusion. Representing institutions across a wide geography, academic researchers and development practitioners from Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America have authored the chapters that lend the volume its distinctly diverse topical foci. Based on a wide range of cases and intriguing experiences, this collection is a valuable resource for everyone interested in the present and future of cities and urban regions in Asia-Pacific.

Surabaya: The Legacy of Participatory Upgrading of Informal Settlements

Dr. Das is the lead author of the case study, Surabaya: The Legacy of Participatory Upgrading of Informal Settlements, that was published by the World Resources Institute as part of their World Resources Report project, Towards a More Equal City series. The case study focuses on transformative planning which facilitated and preserved affordable housing in Surabaya, Indonesia. It is the final case study in a series of seven similar research papers from around the world.

The New Urban Agenda in Asia-Pacific: Governance for Sustainable and Inclusive Cities is available via Springer.