SOAS University of London

Department of Development Studies

Ms Roshni Menon

  • Teaching
  • Research


Roshni Menon
Department of Development Studies

Graduate Teaching Assistant

Ms Roshni Menon
Email address:
Thesis title:
Land-pooling for the ‘smart city’ of Amaravati, Andhra Pradesh: Inclusive development or land dispossession in a different guise?
Year of Study:
Internal Supervisors


Roshni has degrees in International Relations from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex in Brighton, UK. She has consulted for over a decade at UNDP and UN Women on issues spanning human development, gender equality, environmental sustainability, democratic governance, and the sustainable development goals (SDGs). She began her career working for an NGO focused on microfinance, natural resource management and women’s empowerment in Karnataka, India.

PhD Research

Roshni’s PhD research focuses on India’s biggest experiment in urban development: the construction of Amaravati, a new capital city for the Southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Of a required 35,000 acres of (private, agricultural) land for the core of the new capital, 33,000 acres was accumulated within a year through a process known as land pooling. The emergence of land pooling combined with the political dynamics of state-society relations, raises a series of questions centered on the nature of the relationship between the state and different groups of landowners and users (i.e.
farmers, tenants and landless laborers). Her thesis will unpack and elucidate the diverse and overlapping reasons for why authorities in Andhra may have pursued the strategy of land pooling and its impacts on different groups of social actors in the rural sector.


SOAS Postgraduate Journal – Editor (2016/2017)



Accumulation by dispossession, Andhra Pradesh, agrarian change, cities, caste, governance,
India, land acquisition, land dispossession, land pooling.