Hyderabad Urban Lab produces knowledges about the city to enable durable responses to challenges of urban coexistence. We do this through research, teaching, offering services and through direct engagement with different actors in the city. Our coordinates, both human and ecological are our main resources. Outputs of our work are available in multiple formats and designed to facilitate further action.
We “do” many things.
At HUL we think, talk, discuss, explore, learn, teach, walk, draw, map, write, view, record, present, sing, dance, tell stories, agree, argue, shoot photographs, create videos and GIFs, organise events, invite people and much else.
As an urban research organisation our primary commitment is of course to the production of knowledge related to multiple issues and challenges that urban existence throws up. Since it is public money that allows us to do all this it is only reasonable that we make most of our work available to the public.
We try to share our work with people in our neighbourhood and with whoever else has use for it. The sharing happens through interactive sessions, exhibitions, publications, presentations and talks, through social media and through the engagement and pedagogy strands of our work. Students, social science researchers, urban activists, planners, designers and those who work in the areas of advocacy and policy making at the local, national and international levels have access to the material we produce and also to the processes through which we produce them.
One of the FAQs that HUL receives is, “What is the use of this work? Why don’t you do something useful?”
We read the question as a need to understand the utility and relevance of research and our FGA (frequently given answer) is that producing knowledge entails deeper examination of things which in turn leads to a better understanding of issues. The importance of HULF’s work lies in asking relevant questions and seeking well informed answers from all available sources.
Challenges of the urban are mostly about the multiple claims on limited resources. We are wary of offering pat solutions. Instead we try to present a clear picture of the ways in which problems impact people, regardless of their socio economic status. Different actors and stakeholders can use this knowledge to initiate campaigns, make interventions, design solutions or make any other contribution that their capacities allow.