Principal Investigator

Prof. Ayona Datta, Professor in Human Geography (University College London)

Ayona Datta

Prof. Datta works at the intersections of urban futures, gender citizenship and smart cities, focusing on new configurations of gender-power relations in the digital-urban margins.  She is author of ‘The Illegal City (Ashgate, 2012); co-editor of Mega-Urbanisation in the Global South’ (Routledge, 2017) and Translocal Geographies’ (Routledge, 2011). She is currently editor of Urban Geography and on the editorial boards of Antipode, Dialogues in Human Geography, Digital Geography and Society and Society and Space. She received the Busk Medal from Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) in 2019 for her contributions to understanding of smart cities through fieldwork. Ayona blogs as The city inside out.



Dr Padmini Ray Murray, Partner (Design Beku, Bengaluru)

Padmini Ray Murray

Dr Padmini Ray Murray is founder of Design Beku, a feminist collective that endeavours to place an ethics of care at the heart of digital and design practice. As a creative practitioner, Padmini creates new media work which reflects her research and interests, such as “Darshan Diversion” (with KV Ketan and Joel Johnson), a feminist video game about the Sabarimala temple controversy (2016); “Halt The Hate” (with Pratyush Raman) an interactive database of crimes against minorities for Amnesty India (2017), “Visualising Cybersecurity” – a project that aims to alter how cybersecurity is depicted and discussed in the media (with the Centre for Internet and Society and Paulanthony George); and a speculative comic on the personal data protection bill, “Designing for Democracy” (with Paulanthony George).


Local Research Assistant (Delhi)

Arya Thomas, PhD Researcher (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi)

Arya Thomas

Arya is PhD research scholar in Political Science in New Delhi, India. Having an interest in migration, women workers and sexuality, her work mostly focuses on trying to understand the emerging new sexual subjectivity of the working class women in the new industrial nodes in India.

Local Research Assistant (Bengaluru)

Syeda Zainab, Independent Researcher (Srishti School of Design)