Sapana Doshi

About Sapana Doshi

Sapana Doshi, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor at the School of Geography and Development and a Faculty Affiliate in the Department of Gender and Women's Studies. Her work on urban social movements explores the nexus of cultural politics and political economy in cities of the Global South and traverses the fields of critical development studies, feminist political geography and urban geography.

Her current research is on the politics of global city redevelopment, eviction and resettlement in Mumbai, India with a focus on social mobilization among displaced residents of informal slum settlements. Using ethnographic and other qualitative methods, Dr. Doshi’s work examines the political economic and cultural processes through which urban transformation is both enabled and contested. She investigates how class, gender and ethnic differences shape experiences of dispossession in the changing city and yield distinct spatio-political subjectivities.

Prior to entering academia, Dr. Doshi spent six years working as a development practitioner in non-governmental organizations in Brazil, Nepal and the U.S. Her areas of work included micro-finance, gender-based empowerment, rural drought relief, urban housing and sustainability. She has also been involved in performance, awareness-raising and rights campaigns with feminist and LGBT groups in South Asian-American communities.

Areas of Study

Critical Development Studies, Urban Geography, Feminist Geography, Cities of the Global South, Social Movements, State Theory, Ethnography


Sapana is working on a new collaborative research project (with Dr. Malini Ranganathan and Dr. David Pike of American University) that explores narratives of corruption as a lens into the experience, contested ethics and political critique of rapid change in cities of the Global South. This project titled, Corruption Plots, Imagined Publics: The Ethics of Space in the Millennial City combines social science methods of ethnography and humanistic analysis of films, novels and other creative work from cities around the world. The project is supported by an American Council of Learned Societies grant

Selected Publications


Doshi, S. L. (2016). Embodied Urban Political Ecology: Five propositions. Area. doi:10.1111/area.12293

Doshi, S. L., & Ranganathan, M. (2016). Contesting the Unethical City: Land Dispossession and Corruption Narratives in Urban India. Annals of the American Association of Geographers. doi:10.1080/24694452.2016.1226124

Marston, S., & Doshi, S. L. (2016). The Janice Monk Lecture in Feminist Geography: The First Ten Years. Gender, Place and Culture. doi:10.1080/0966369X.2016.1257413

Doshi, S. (2014). Imperial Water, Urban Crisis: A Political Ecology of Colonial State Formation in Bombay, 1850- 1890. Review: Journal of the Fernand Braudel Center.

Casolo, J., & Doshi, S. (2013). Domesticated Dispossessions? Towards a Transnational Feminist Geopolitics of Development. Geopolitics, 18, 800-834.

Doshi, S. (2013). Domesticated Dispossessions: Towards a Transnational Feminist Geopolitics of Development. Geopolitics.

Doshi, S. (2013). The Politics of the Evicted: Redevelopment, Subjectivity and Difference in Mumbai's Slum Frontier. Antipode: Journal of Radical Geography, 45(4), 844-865.

Book Chapters

Doshi, S. (2014). Rethinking Gentrification in India: Displacement, Dispossession and the Spectre of Development. In Gentrification, Globalization and the Post-colonial Challenge. Polity Press.

Doshi, S. (2013). Resettlement Ecologies: Space, Citizenship and Difference in Mumbai. In Ecologies of Urbanism in India: Metropolitan Civility and Sustainability(pp 225-248). Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.

Doshi, S. (2012). The Politics of Persuasion: Gendered Slum Citizenship in Neoliberal Mumbai. In Urban India: Emerging Citizenships and Contested Spaces. Sage.

Sapana Doshi's picture

Contact Information

Sapana Doshi
Assistant Professor, School of Geography and Development


PhD (2011) Department of Geography, University of California, Berkeley

B.A. (1997) Department of Economics, Barnard College, Columbia University

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences