The event featured Shri Akhilesh Yadav, Honorable Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, as well first-hand insights from Harvard scholars and Kumbh administrators who were on the ground during the festival in 2013.
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At an event on May 19 at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, faculty leaders from the Kumbh Mela project shared why studying the world’s largest gathering provided so many lessons for fields such as business, public health, and urban planning.
Watch SAI Director Tarun Khanna give a TedX talk about what the world can learn from the Kumbh Mela.
On Monday, January 18, the Harvard South Asia Institute (SAI) launched the book and exhibition Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity in Mumbai at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya.
At the Asia Society in New York on November 6, faculty leaders discussed how the Kumbh Mela is an opportunity to learn about megacities, possibly illuminating solutions to natural disasters that require temporary housing.
“They had six weeks to get a city up and running with infrastructure, water supply, and electricity. That was an amazing surprise. But equally surprising was how quickly they dismantled it,” says Rahul Mehrotra, Graduate School of Design, one of the faculty members who will speak about the project at the Asia Society on Nov. 6
“India is no stranger to confusion and that is why the much-talked-of jugaad, muddling through or miraculously rescuing a situation at the last moment is so common. But the Kumbh Mela, according to the Harvard team, was a carefully planned and efficiently executed operation.”
The Jana Swasthya Project has introduced a new mobile health surveillance system to help keep the millions of visitors healthy while they’re at the festival.
The cornerstone of the project is a unique interactive visual analytic tool (“dashboard”) that provides critical disease surveillance data to health officials in real time.
On Monday, August 17, SAI launched the Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity book and exhibition in Delhi, India. Shri Akhilesh Yadav, Honorable Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, was on hand to launch the book with Harvard faculty, to a crowd of over 250 people.
Read an article from the Harvard Gazette about SAI’s launch of “Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity.”