Make/Break emerged from a research project about the effect of the ongoing socio-spatial transformation of Mumbai on marginalised communities in the city, and their responses to it. In our research, we approached urban transformation through the concept of structural violence. The exhibition illuminates its tacit and undocumented manifestations. Make/Break was almost ready as a physical exhibition when the Covid-19 related lockdown was imposed in Mumbai in March 2020. The exhibition was then moved to the digital medium as a result, and took a new form.

Amita Bhide

Amita Bhide is a Professor at Centre for Urban Policy and Governance (CUPG) at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai (TISS). Her work draws significantly on her training in community organisation wherein research and action are intertwined. She has researched housing, governance, planning, sanitation, livelihoods and urban development issues from a perspective of equity and inclusion.

Himanshu Burte

Himanshu Burte is an Associate Professor at Centre for Urban Science and Engineering (CUSE), Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. An architect and urbanist, he seeks to map the complexities, possibilities, and justice of urban policy, planning and spatial practice through his research. He researches the spatiality of urban infrastructure, subaltern placemaking, and the critical practice of sustainable architecture in India.

Lalitha Kamath

Lalitha Kamath is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Urban Policy and Governance (CUPG), Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai (TISS). Her early work unpacked the politics and uneven impacts of urban reform processes, public participation and infrastructure projects. More recently, she focuses on the violence and dispossessions of property urbanism in the global south, but also the bottom-up agency of marginalised groups in unsettling dominant urbanisms.

Ratoola Kundu

Ratoola Kundu is an Assistant Professor at the Centre for Urban Policy and Governance (CUPG) at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai (TISS). Combining her training in urban planning and sociology, her research interests lie at the intersection of different trajectories of the production of urban space and the ways in which particular marginalised groups experience, contribute to and actively resist exclusionary forms of neoliberal urban transformations.


  • Sangeeta Banerji
  • Durgesh Solanki

M ward

  • Durgesh Solanki
  • Sabah Khan
  • Purva Dewoolkar
  • Avinash Kaur Bons
  • CORO


  • Shivani Satija
  • Anushyama Mukherjee
  • Durgesh Solanki
  • Aradhana Paralikar
  • Interns: Devashree Ragde, Apurva Gandhi, Kunal Chaturvedi

Nala Sopara

  • Radhika Raj
  • Malay Kotal
  • Kanak Rajadhyaksha
  • Interns: Nirali Joshi, Nitin Meshram, Iain Payne, Sreelakshmi R.


  • Shruthi Parthasarathy

M ward

  • Abrar Nasir Salmani (Abrarbhai)
  • P.S. Abul Hassan
  • P.V Suleman (Hassanbhai)
  • Umar Rahmat Shaikh (Umarbhai)
  • Ajuma Bi (Khala)
  • Prakash Kumbhar


  • Nirmala Thakur
  • Sanjay Kadam
  • Brijesh Arya
  • Pehchan


  • Nitin Kubal

Nala Sopara

  • Ram Anuj Pathak
  • Purva Dewoolkar(M Ward, JVLR)
  • Avinash Kaur Bons(M Ward)
  • Nisha Kundar (Kamathipura, Nala Sopara, JVLR)
  • Aradhana Paralikar (Kamathipura, Nala Sopara, JVLR)
  • Piyali Bhattacharya
  • Kalyani Monteiro-Jayasankar
  • Smita Waingankar
  • Durgesh Solanki
  • Mihir Desai(Nala Sopara, JVLR)
  • Avinash Kaur Bons(M Ward)
  • Aradhana Paralikar (Kamathipura, Nala Sopara, JVLR)

Research for Make/Break was conducted by the Centre for Urban Policy and Governance (CUPG) at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai over 2013-16 through a South-South project titled, ‘People, Places, Infrastructure: Countering Urban Violence and Promoting Justice in Mumbai, Rio de Janeiro and Durban’. Research actively involved youth, activists and leaders from local communities.

The project was funded by IDRC, Canada

Additional research and the preparation of the exhibition was undertaken as part of the Tacit Urban Transformation (TURN) project funded by Ford Foundation, New Delhi

We are grateful to the different communities, individuals and institutions that shared their insights, experiences, information, resources and time with us during the course of our research. Many interactions with our academic collaborators on the two projects the exhibition comes out of have shaped the research in this exhibition. We are also very happy to acknowledge the support of the administration at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).

We acknowledge the following for resources and permissions to use them in the exhibition.

Visual material

M ward

  • Studies done under the project called ‘Transforming M(East) ward’, at TISS, Mumbai.
  • Stock photographs: Dinodia
  • Photographs: Abdul Hassan, Prakash Kumbhar Rimjhim Bajpai, Purva Dewoolkar and Avinash Kaur


  • YUVA and (, for screen grabs from the film Jod Rasta Tod Rasta.
  • Prerna Sanghatana, for photographs and visual material.
  • Nitin Kubal, for copies of correspondence with state organisations.
  • Photographs: Himanshu Burte


  • Stock photographs: Shutterstock, Dinodia
  • Photographs: Ratoola Kundu, Aradhana Paralikar, Devashree Ragde, Apurva Gandhi, and Kunal Chaturvedi

Nala Sopara