Current facets (Pre-Master)

Joop de Wit on informal governance and the Mumbai municipal elections

Joop de Wit
Joop de Wit

ISS Senior Lecturer Joop de Wit will be a panelist at the Modern South Asia Seminar on 'Money, Muscle and Manoeuvring: Understanding Informal Governance in Municipal Elections of Mumbai'

Joop de Wit will be one of the panelists during this panel discussion which will focus on the informality of everyday politics in the slums of Mumbai. It will further touch upon various aspects of mobilizing voters through clientelism, mediation, vote buying, machine politics.

Discussion background

Megacities like Mumbai have been the focal point of many studies on aspects of urbanity and modernity in the post-colonial literature. Similarly the municipal corporations, responsible for governing these cities also do get a lot of attention focusing on local governance and urban studies. However, the richest municipal body in Asia, with a budget outrunning many of the state government budgets in India, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has come to define the metropolis of Mumbai in more ways than one.

This panel discussion focuses on the informality of everyday politics in the slums of Mumbai and touches upon various aspects of mobilizing voters through clientelism, mediation, vote buying, machine politics.

The basic aim is to highlight on the workings of everyday politics in the urban spheres of mega cities like Mumbai. Basing on their exensive fieldwork in the city, the Panelists will try to unravel the functioning of informal patronage networks in the wake of municipal elections and the effect these informal networks have on the formal governance and administration in the civic body.

Filled with rich insights from the field, the discussion aims to cater to those interested in understanding the everyday informal politics of big cities as well those who deal with topics of law and governance, electoral politics, clientelism and patronage.

Panelists

  • Lisa Bjorkman, Dept. of Urban and Public Affairs, University of Louisville, USA. Lisa is the author of a book on Mumbai titled, 'Pipe politics, contested waters' and has also written extensively on vote buying and its meanings.
  • Joop de Wit, ISS. Joop has just completed his new book on Mumbai titled, 'Urban Poverty, Local Governance and Everyday Politics in Mumbai' (Routledge, 2017).

Discussants

  • Ward Berenschot, KITLV, Leiden. Ward has worked on communal violence and patronage networks in India and has authored the book titled, ‘Riot Politics’ based on his fieldwork in the city of Ahmedabad, Gujarat.
  • Sarthak Bagchi, Leiden University Institute for Area Studies (LIAS)
    Sarthak is a doctoral fellow in LIAS and is working on his thesis titled, ‘Cientelism and Patronage in Indian Elections: A comparative study of Bihar and Maharashtra’

Time and place

Date - Wednesday 10 May 2017
Time - 17:00-18:30
Venue - Conference Hall,  Huizinga Building, Faculty of Humanities, Leiden University

More information

All are welcome to attend.